Atlantic Notes: Porzingis, Thomas, Poeltl

Second-year big man Kristaps Porzingis knew early on that the Knicks weren’t going to be a competitive team this season, citing a lack of chemistry and teamwork. Marc Berman of the New York Post wrote about the sophomore’s troubling realization as the franchise finds itself staring at a 27-42 record.

I think it was pretty easy to tell from the inside that we’re not that good of a team,” Porzingis said of the Knicks. “We can win games based on our talent, but it’s not going to last long. [We needed] more work, attention to details, to keep growing as a team. A good team needs time to play together.”

The forward, whose averaged 18.0 points per game across 58 contests so far this season, acknowledged that the transition process can be difficult and that the Knicks did add several fresh faces like starting point guard Derrick Rose, but it was a disappointing year nonetheless.

Of course, we all expected big things out of this year, but from the beginning it didn’t feel like — I felt we’d make big runs, but we weren’t there at that level where we wanted to be,” Porzingis said. “We can see now we’re not where we want it to be.”

  • After a two-game hiatus, guard Isaiah Thomas is back in action for the Celtics, Chris Forsberg of ESPN tweets. The All-Star had been nursing a knee bruise. The 29.2 point-per-game scorer returns as the C’s sit 2.5 games back of the Cavaliers for the top seed in the East.
  • Though sparsely used for the majority of his rookie campaign, first-year big man Jakob Poeltl is earning the trust of Raptors head coach Dwane Casey, Doug Smith of the Toronto Star writes. “Every time you put him in, he does something positive,” Casey said. “There’s that trust, not only with myself but with his teammates. He’s doing positive things, he plays with physicality.” Poeltl has averaged 16.8 minutes per game in his last five contests.
  • Pressed to talk about the city of Los Angeles, Carmelo Anthony told the New York Post’s Marc Berman that he thinks L.A. is a relaxing place and that his family feels comfortable there. He also said, “Nah, don’t start, I haven’t thought about it,” though, so take it for what it’s worth. “I try not to think about it,” Anthony told the reporter. “Especially now when I’m still playing with the New York Knicks.

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