KEY POINTS

  • Knicks need to get more out of RJ Barrett and Mitchell Robinson
  • Barrett and Robinson need to find ways to play maturely
  • Knicks could target the NBA playoffs to see what else needs to be done to the team

The New York Knicks are ahead of the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA Eastern Conference with a 10-24 card. That is hardly comforting considering this is a team that was supposed to perform better than last season. At the rate they are going, they could end up toting a slightly better win-loss record if not the same.

The 2019-20 NBA season has just been disastrous for the Knicks once more. They opted to fire David Fizdale and are now guided by Mike Miller on an interim basis. Former Cavs head coach David Blatt is on board but it appears this move was meant to prep for the future. So what do the Knicks do for this current season?

Technically, the Knicks can still make a final run for an NBA playoff spot. The best chance is an 8th seed at the best. Even if they reach that goal, they are unlikely to go deep. But achieving that is the right path towards something positive.

With their current cast, catching the last bus to the postseason will be tough but doable. As of this writing, they have won three games in a row. Miller may want to push rookie RJ Barrett and sophomore Mitchell Robinson to do more since they are deemed the future of the franchise. Hence, sharpening their skill sets should start as early as now.

Barrett has proven that he has the hops to be in the NBA. Being a rookie, it comes to no surprise that his decision-making is a work in progress. Most of the time, he forces the issue and such has been hurting the Knicks on offense. He has been holding up good defensively, unafraid to challenge opposing players. Given more time, Barrett will show his true worth.

As for Robinson, he is practically in the same vote as Barrett. He lacks maturity but has shown glimpses of brilliance. Much of that has been seen recently in the Knicks three-game winning run. He has been progressing very well and currently leads the NBA in field-goal percentage despite coming off the bench, the New York Post reported.

Defensively, Robinson is not afraid to mix it up. He is also altering shots, if not denying them. The sophomore is also doing his job of cleaning the boards. The only thing he needs to work on is to stay out of foul trouble.

With the NBA trade deadline approaching,  names such as Marcus Morris, Dennis Smith Jr., and Julius Randle have been mentioned. The only thing that seems certain is that Barrett and Robinson are off the table.

RJ Barrett RJ Barrett #9 of the New York Knicks high fives teammates during a game against the Phoenix Suns at NBA Summer League on July 07, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo: Cassy Athena/Getty Images





Source link