Kevin Knox riding the bench for Knicks

Young Knicks forward Kevin Knox played 28.8 minutes per game as a rookie last season, starting in 57 of 75 games.

This year, he has come off the bench for 17 of 18 games, playing nine fewer minutes per outing than as a rookie.

The New York Post reports the following: “Sometimes they’ve got to go through some tough love to find themselves and watch the game from 25,000 feet, see it, and see the things that I’m emphasizing,” Knicks coach David Fizdale said when asked about Knox after practice Saturday in Tarrytown. “I was tough on Frank last year and I just feel like Frank has come back with a whole different mindset about how he’s going to go about this season.”

It’ll be interesting to see how Knox progresses this season. If he’s able to raise his shooting percentage and overall game, it would make future Knicks roster decision-making a lot easier.

Frank Ntilikina still developing his offensive game

 

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The 7-16 Knicks are 30th in the league in field goal percentage. Considering that there are 30 teams in the league, there’s room for improvement there. They are 25th in three-point shooting percentage, so that’s slightly better. But shooting is an issue. While it’s a team thing, young guard Frank Ntilikina is scoring 5.9 points per game on 33.3% FG and 26% from three-land. For more on him, here’s New York Newsday:

A scoreless night in a one-sided loss on 0-for-5 shooting, which came a night after another scoreless night in Detroit, raised questions again about the progress and development of the second-year guard, a former lottery pick and now a mystery in the Knicks’ rebuilding plans.

A lost rookie season in which he missed summer league, much of preseason and then found himself buried by since-fired coach Jeff Hornacek led to this sophomore season. While new head coach David Fizdale arrived with a mandate to focus on player development, Ntilikina remains a project without a clear direction.

Ntilikina’s defensive skills are nice. His shot and offense are a work in construction.

Mitchell Robinson back to bench for Knicks

The Knicks season thus far has focused on rookie development, and one of the key guys to watch is center Mitchell Robinson. Here’s the New York Post with the latest on him:

Mitchell Robinson had his taste of starting and is fine with Knicks coach David Fizdale’s decision to bring him off the bench. The company line was to keep the 20-year-old project out of severe foul trouble.

In the Knicks’ stunning 117-109 win at Boston on Wednesday, Robinson played just 16 minutes but registered six blocks and was 4 for 4 from the field. It was his second straight game coming off the bench for newly promoted center Enes Kanter.

“As you seen, I didn’t get into foul trouble until late in the game,’’ Robinson said. “If I started, I would’ve gotten in trouble and would’ve sat almost the whole game. My teammates need me to come in and challenge shots.’’

For the season, Robinson is averaging 5.2 points, 4.2 rebounds and a very impressive 2.0 blocks in 18.1 minutes per game.

The Knicks play host to the Pelicans tonight.

Pregame: Trail Blazers vs Knicks game notes

Trail Blazers (11-5) vs Knicks (4-13)
Madison Square Garden, New York
Tuesday, November 20, 2018
7:30 p.m. ET

KNICKS NOTES

If the New York Knicks win vs POR then, they will improve their overall record versus ORL to 48-64.

If New York wins tonight vs. POR, then New York will snap a three-game losing streak vs. POR. The last time New York defeated Portland was Nov 22, 2016; 107-103.

If Noah Vonleh posts a double-double vs. ORL, then he will set a new career best for double-doubles in a season with five (previous four in 16-17).

New York recorded 15 team blocks on 11/11/18 vs. ORL.

– The 15 blocks tied a franchise record for blocks in a game (at WAS, 1/28/88)

– The 15 blocks set a blocks record at the present MSG (previous 14 blocks vs. PHL 4/4/15)

– Mitchell Robinson recorded nine blocks. The nine blocks set a new Knick rookie record (previously seven blocks by Kristaps Porzingis 2x and Lonnie Shelton)

Mitchell Robinson is T-fourth in the NBA in blocks per game in the month of November at 2.44.

BLAZERS NOTES

The Trail Blazers average the second-most defensive rebounds in the NBA (39.9) while the Knicks average the third-most offensive rebounds in the league (12.6).

Damian Lillard led the Trail Blazers with 40 points (12-29 FG, 3-10 3-PT, 13-15 FT) against the Wizards on Nov. 18. It was the third 40-point game of the season for Lillard, which is the most in the NBA. Lillard has 19 career games with 40-plus points, which is the most in franchise history (Drexler, 17). Lillard is averaging 26.6 points per game, which is the seventh-most in the NBA (Walker, 29.6).

With 13 points and 14 rebounds at Washington on Nov. 18, Jusuf Nurkic recorded his fourth straight double-double (tied for longest streak in his career) and his 10th straight game scoring in double fi gures (second-longest streak of his career). In his last four games, Nurkic has averaged 16.3 points, 14.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.50 blocks.

CJ McCollum was named NBA Western Conference Player of the Week for games played from Nov. 5 to Nov. 11. His week was highlighted by 40 points, four rebounds, six assists and four steals against the Bucks on Nov. 6 and 23 points and seven rebounds against the Clippers on Nov. 8. Portland went 3-0 on the week, with all three wins coming against teams with winning records. It is the first time McCollum has received the award.

The Trail Blazers lead the league in free-throw percentage (85.4%), are fi fth in free throws per game (20.4) and are 14th in free throws attempted per game (23.9).

Enes Kanter plays just 15 minutes in latest Knicks loss

 

 

 

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Every player wants to step up during a contract year (a year when they will or at least might be a free agent after the season). But it’s hard to do that while receiving limited minutes. Such is the situation for many veterans on rebuilding teams that are more focused on the development of rookies and other young players than they are about the immediate dividends that may come from giving veterans more minutes.

Speaking of which, here’s New York Newsday discussing the Knicks and veteran center Enes Kanter, who received 26 minutes of court time three games ago, 22 minutes two games ago, and just 15 minutes on Friday:

When Knicks coach David Fizdale put all three of his rookies in the starting lineup Friday he made a statement. And then a stronger one when, with the game on the line, he inserted all three with the game on the line, admitting he wanted to test the trio under fire.

But the bigger test might be how Fizdale can manage the veterans on the roster. Enes Kanter, left on the bench as the New Orleans Pelicans dominated the Knicks’ young frontcourt that night to turn the game, left the locker room quickly with no comment night, then went, as he often does to social media. He tweeted out just a line of periods and asked about it Sunday morning, he didn’t reveal the meaning but said with a smile, “It’s only going to grow bigger.”

Kanter may be the most pressing case, a player who has established himself as much of a star as there is on this lottery-bound development project. He is a free agent at season’s end after opting in to the final season of his contract over the summer, and while his minutes and numbers have for the most part remained steady, he was pulled from the starting lineup after five games in favor of Mitchell Robinson. And on nights like Friday when he played just 15 minutes, there was clear frustration.

It would not be surprising to see Kanter receive more minutes again, but the reality is his future may very well be elsewhere so unless they market him in order to trade him, the team’s focus may likely remain on their youth.

Knicks starting a flock of rookies

The Knicks have a solid, fun flock of rookies who aren’t big-time NBA players yet but have talent and have been enjoyable to watch this season. Here’s the latest update on several of them, and the starting lineup, from the New York Post:

The Knicks’ rookie power trio will start together for the first time this season.

David Fizdale has made one more starting lineup tweak, adding undrafted rookie guard Allonzo Trier in a small-ball shuffle that sends power forward Noah Vonleh to the bench and 2018 lottery pick Kevin Knox from small to power forward.

Amid a lousy start record-wise at 4-11, the lone upside is Fizdale buying in completely to a youth movement and showcasing the three promising rookies.

Center Mitchell Robinson has started over Enes Kanter since the season’s sixth game and will make his New Orleans homecoming Friday vs. the Pelicans.

Each rookie has shown flashes. They may not be winning much so far this first month of NBA action but they’re providing entertainment and the potential for legitimate growth as pros.

Knicks rookie Mitchell Robinson blocks 9 shots in one game

The Knicks are rebuilding, awaiting eventual return of Kristaps Porzingis, and mostly relying on very young players to compete. There will be some wins, but plenty of losses, and hopefully positive signs from their youth along the way. And although the Magic won a decisive victory against the Knicks yesterday, center Mitchell Robinson put on a block party. Here’s the New York Post reporting:

Knicks rookie center Mitchell Robinson was drafted 30 slots behind Orlando’s rookie Mo Bamba, but only one of them made the history books Sunday at the Garden.

Robinson set a new Knicks rookie record for blocks with nine as the lone home-team standout in Sunday’s 115-89 shellacking by Orlando. Robinson, who had a handful of rejections at the perimeter, broke the record shared previously by Kristaps Porzingis and Lonnie Shelton, who both had seven.

“I can thank coach,” Robinson said of David Fizdale. “He puts me in position to get those blocks. He was like drop back, don’t worry about my guy. If you see him going full speed at the rim just go get him and meet him at the rim.”

Robinson was one off the Knicks franchise record for blocks — which he said he believes he will break one day.

Full Article

Knicks reveal City Edition uniform design

The New York Knicks today unveiled their City Edition alternate jersey, which features the New York City Skyline as the central design element and a symbol of the diverse cultures united across New York City.

The Knicks will debut these uniforms on Sunday, November 11 when the team takes on the Orlando Magic at Madison Square Garden and will continue to wear the jerseys at various theme nights throughout the 2018-19 season.

According to the team, “the City Edition design was inspired by what it means to be a New Yorker and utilizes one of the City’s most iconic and defining attributes – its skyline—as a representation of the many cultures that make up New York and their shared ambitions and dreams. To unveil the uniforms to the team, six Junior Knicks members were invited to the Knicks practice facility where they read letters describing how the Knicks inspire them as New Yorkers.”