Dennis Smith Jr. has done nothing to boost his trade value during the Knicks’ first two preseason games, Marc Berman of the New York Post notes. Though new coach Tom Thibodeau praised Smith last week, the guard hasn’t produced on the court. Smith, who could be a restricted or unrestricted free agent next offseason, logged 37 minutes and shot just 33% from the field. He also looked out of sorts when the Pistons trapped him on Sunday while posting a minus-15 in 16 minutes, Berman adds.
We have more from the Atlantic Division:
- Nets guard Kyrie Irving finally complied with league rules and met virtually with the media on Monday, Malika Andrews of ESPN writes. Irving had called the media “pawns” in an Instagram post and was fined by the league for refusing to speak to journalists prior to Monday. Irving made a point of praising coach Steve Nash, after previously making a comment that was construed as a knock on Nash when Irving said on a podcast he didn’t see the team “as having a head coach.” “Steve’s been amazing,” Irving said. “He kind of commands the respect. I think I’ve got to take back my comments in terms of the head coach back a few months ago.”
- Chris Boucher will have an expanded role with the Raptors this season now that Serge Ibaka and Marc Gasol are gone, and he plans to do the dirty work, according to Doug Smith of the Toronto Star. The big man re-signed with the club on a two-year, $13.5MM deal as a restricted free agent. “You’ve got to come in the game, play defense, block shots, rebound, make the good reads,” Boucher said. “I think I was a little trigger happy before … We’ve got good shooters with me when I’m playing now, so I don’t really need to be taking those shots.”
- The Knicks are planning to hire Pops Mensah-Bonsu as president and director of their G League operations, The Athletic’s Mike Vorkunov and Shams Charania tweet. Mensah-Bonsu was the GM of the Wizards’ Capital City Go-Go G League team last season after a stint as a Spurs scout.