Knicks great returns to drop some knowledge on RJ Barrett

Knicks coach David Fizdale is hoping Bernard King turns into the team’s lottery-pick whisperer.

Last season, the Hall-of-Fame scoring forward was assigned as rookie Kevin Knox’s mentor and they got together for four sessions, even spending some time together on the road for breakfasts. Now it’s on to RJ Barrett, the Knicks’ third-overall pick in June’s draft.

After Thursday’s practice, Barrett sat for several minutes with King, who has been invited for the second straight year to training camp. King, the Brooklyn-born scoring machine, will be with the club until Saturday.

“It’s obvious to me he wants to be an outstanding player,’’ said King, wearing a vintage Knicks jacket. “I shared with him, the key is hard work. I said ‘Hey, when I was an all-pro, I’d go in on Sunday. And nobody was in the gym but me. So I was constantly working on my game.’ ”

King, who starred for the Knicks from 1982-87, doesn’t have an official title, but Fizdale has leaned on prominent alumni to help. Knicks legend and former Senator from New Jersey Bill Bradley also attended Thursday’s practice.

Barrett, a 6-foot-7 swingman, can use the tutelage as a rookie. During summer league play in Las Vegas, the 19-year-old lefty struggled with his outside shot. Scouts have wondered if he will be able to get to the rim with the same deftness as he did at Duke.

“I didn’t see the summer,’’ the 62-year-old King said. “Obviously I saw him play in college. One of the things I told him [was]: When I came into the league I couldn’t handle the ball and I excelled at that at one point. And I didn’t have a jump shot beyond 15 feet. I developed those aspects of my game. In any profession, you have to build your skill sets. He’s obviously a tremendous talent. He’s going to have a great career. He’ll continue to grow as any young player would.”

King addressed the team before practice and also had a one-on-one chat with Knox. The 2018 lottery pick from Kentucky absorbed plenty of knowledge last season.

“Just trying to pick his brain,’’ Knox said. “He’s one of the greatest scorers of all time. He pretty much watched all the games, so he’s just giving me some tips. He’s got spots on the court that he works on before practice, after practice, before games. He just wants me to go to each spot before the game and knock this shot down. So he’s telling me to master some of the shots before moving to something else.’’

The Knicks will need either Barrett or Knox to become an All-Star if this franchise has a chance to return to playoff prominence. Before joining the Knicks, King starred for the Nets, the team with which Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving decided to set up shop.

“Surprised? It’s really not a surprise,’’ King said of the free agents’ decision to sign with Brooklyn. “It’s similar to LeBron [James] going to Miami with [Dwyane] Wade. You had a similar circumstance with Durant. Kyrie and he are very good friends and they wanted to play together.”

So why not play on the biggest stage at the Garden? King laughed.

“You have to ask them that,’’ he said. “I can’t get into their heads and minds.”

Carmelo Anthony — in contrast to Durant and Irving — wanted the brightest lights of Broadway. Anthony considered King his idol, but now is unemployed. NBA sources believe Anthony is still on the outs because he hasn’t displayed a willingness to accept a smaller role.

“Melo is one of the greatest players to ever play the game,’’ King said. “I’m honored he patterned a large part of his game after mine. It’s a little surprise for everyone. The league changes and shifts and sometimes you have to adjust your game accordingly.’’

King thinks these Knicks could have the right mixture of veterans and young players to do damage.

“I think they have some very talented players,’’ King said. “When you think of having [Julius] Randle, and some of the experienced players they have with [Marcus] Morris, [Taj] Gibson and you have some good, talented young players who will continue to develop, I like what they’ve done. I think they’ve done an effective job of bringing free agents that like to be here and would like to play in this market of New York.’’

Former Knick Kristaps Porzingis responded to Barrett’s answer — in an online fan chat — that the 7-3 Latvian would be the player the rookie most wants to dunk on.

“That’s fine,’’ Porzingis said Thursday in Dallas. “I’m a shot-blocker. I don’t know what some people are saying. I’m one of the best shot-blockers in the league. I’m always up for the challenge. I think that’s a pretty good goal for him to try to dunk on me. I respect that.”

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