Atlantic Notes: Kanter, Irving, Sixers, Raptors

Enes Kanter has expressed a desire to play more minutes, with the clash between him and the Knicks only just getting started, Marc Berman of the New York Post writes. Kanter has averaged 26.6 minutes per game, starting in 23 of the team’s 37 games this season.

“We’re down by like 40 or 50,” Kanter said, according to Berman. “It’s very embarrassing. I understand we want our young guys to get better, but it’s very painful to watch it. … I have no idea why they’re doing that.”

Kanter is referring to the Knicks’ blowout loss at Utah last weekend, a game in which New York trailed by as many as 40 points. He shot 0-for-6 from the field and registered a minus-30 rating in 17 minutes of action, only adding to his frustration.

Kanter and the Knicks could explore a buyout or trade in the coming weeks, Berman notes, but Kanter’s love for the fans and city of New York may play a role in his eventual decision.

“I like it here,’’ Kanter said, as relayed by Berman in a separate story. “I like the fans here. Lot of good people here. Lot of good teammates. And I’m trying to stay positive, trying to support my teammates. All I can do right now, it’s a test and it’s definitely one of the hardest tests of my career. I’ve just got to stay positive.

“I do love New York. I’ve got no problem with New York. I’ve got no problem with the team, the organization or the fans. I love the media. [But] I want to play.”

There’s more out of the Atlantic Division today:

  • Celtics guard Kyrie Irving suffered a scratched cornea in his left eye against the Spurs on Monday, according to A. Sherrod Blakely of NBC Sports. Irving was on the receiving end of an accidental elbow from Marco Belinelli, but later re-entered the game for his team. “It’s both eyes,” Irving, who was wearing sunglasses, said postgame. “He [Belinell] smacked the s— out of me. He caught me pretty good.” Celtics coach Brad Stevens noted Irving would take antibiotics, but that he isn’t sure what the injury holds beyond Monday.
  • The Sixers are interested in adding perimeter help before the end of the season, Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer notes. Philadelphia completed a blockbuster deal to acquire All-Star Jimmy Butler in November, but the team club lacks the perimeter talent needed to become a well-rounded contender outside of its “Big Three.” The NBA’s trade deadline falls on February 7 this season.
  • Several Raptors players have seen their roles change over the past 12 months, Doug Smith of the Toronto Star writes. The Raptors hired a new head coach in Nick Nurse, re-signed Fred VanVleet on a multi-year deal, and struck a blockbuster trade to acquire Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green in the summer of 2018. Despite the moving parts, Toronto currently holds a 27-11 record and the No. 2 record in the Eastern Conference.
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12 thoughts on “Atlantic Notes: Kanter, Irving, Sixers, Raptors

  1. Z-A

    Most of the 3 and D guys will cost you Chandler, which hurts the roster if you are relying just on Muscala at the 4. Its buyout wizardry again this year.

    • emac22

      What do you think Chandlers expiring contract gets you?

      Trade Fultz and a pick. get a good player instead of a salary dump.

      The window isn’t open forever and they shouldn’t waste a single year of it.

      • dust44

        Exactly… There’s some pieces to trade. Amir Johnson is on an expiring contract. Plus yes Fultz and they have a lot of picks. Go get a legit rotation piece and go for it.

      • Z-A

        You’ve heard of Salary Matching right? Anything beyond a 1 year rental on a low salary isnt worth trading Fultz and a 1st. That would be a poor use of assets. They either need to use Fultz in a trade for a quality player like Beal or a health Love (matching salary). Most of the guys mentioned are tweener similar to Chandler tho, like Morris. Ariza youd have to trade Chandler to match the salary.

      • Z-A

        The trade for Beal is Chandler, Fultz and picks. So you have Muscala and Amir at the 4 until buyout period. Not ideal. Is Beal that much better on D than Redick to justify the move?

  2. emac22

    Berman is such a obvious paid tool its embarrassing. Unlike you guys, he writes about Kantors complaints without including his pathetic “contribution” of 0-6 and Minus 30. Why didnt he include “paid advertisement” in his article since Kantor is obviously paying him to lie to fans.

    not only is Kantor completely blind to the feelings of other people but he insults trammates that play well while not seeming to realize what a terrible player he is or even how poorly he played in that specific game where he confessed he doesnt even understand why teams develop players.

    He should be sent home until his agent find a trade partner. He makes me sick and is doing as much to hurt the future of this team as he can.

    His empty stat lines arent going to get him paid for the same reason they don’t help teams win. Lets just call him King Minus to properly recognize his contribution.

  3. formerlyz

    If Kanter learned how to defend the pick and roll by moving his feet better, he would get more minutes

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