Knicks Notes: Knox, Brazdeikis, Robinson, Noel

After a disappointing second NBA season, Kevin Knox is taking advantage of a fresh start with the Knicks‘ new coaching staff, writes Marc Berman of The New York Post. Knox has emerged as a dangerous outside shooter, making nine of his last 10 from beyond the arc.

“Looking at his career, when he’s taken good shots, he’s always made them. Or at least had a good chance to make them,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “And when he’s eliminated the tough shots, it makes him a much better player. He plays with a lot more energy defensively. But I want him to get himself going — with his defense first, running the floor, rebounding and then spacing the floor. … Kevin has worked extremely hard to get himself ready for the season.”

Knox, the ninth player taken in the 2018 draft, turned in a strong rookie season, averaging 12.8 PPG in 75 games. But his playing time was cut from 28.8 to 17.9 minutes per game last year and his performance declined across the board. Knox is still only 21 and was counting on a strong preseason showing after the coaching change.

“It’s good, it’s always good to see the ball go through the net,” he said. “But with preseason over now, starting Wednesday we get the real games going, so I want to continue to get the work in, watch a lot of film, get a lot of shots up. It was great to see the ball go through the net these last two games, and hopefully I can continue with that confidence and play with it consistently like I’ve been playing.”

There’s more on the Knicks:

  • Ignas Brazdeikis was in the G League for most of his rookie season and opportunities are still coming slowly, observes Peter Botte of The New York Post. Brazdeikis sat out the Knicks’ first three preseason games before playing 17 minutes Friday night. “I’m just working every single day to get better,” he said. “That’s the main focus is just developing my game. I’m still young. I’ve got to improve a lot. I’m not even close to the player I want to be.”
  • New York wasn’t able to upgrade its roster in free agency, so the focus turns to developing players into tradable assets, notes Steve Popper of Newsday. He adds that the Knicks weren’t able to find anyone willing to give up a draft pick for Dennis Smith Jr. or Frank Ntilikina and states that Mitchell Robinson might have the most trade value on the roster.
  • Nerlens Noel is seeking a new agent after ending his relationship with Rich Paul and Klutch Sports, tweets Alex Kennedy of Basketball News. Paul and the agency say it was an amicable separation (Twitter link).
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19 thoughts on “Knicks Notes: Knox, Brazdeikis, Robinson, Noel

  1. alproof

    Don’t trade Robinson or Brazdeikis—you won’t end up with anything better than them. The old Knicks would trade them for a burnt vet.

  2. Sillivan

    Knicks past 10 years 2 top 5 picks
    RJ and KP

    76ers four straight years 4 top 3 picks
    Fultz 1st pick overall
    Simmons 1 overall
    Embiid 1 overall if not injury
    Okafor keep 1 overall 10 months

    Also 76ers draft Evan Turner at 2nd pick

  3. Sillivan

    76ers now are about the 5th best team in east
    if Knicks have 4 straight years top 3 picks they would be the best team in East

    • KnickerbockerAl

      Take up another sport, please. What is your fascination with the Knicks. Basketball is not fiction. Even at its worst. There’s a direction.

  4. “Looking at his career, when he’s taken good shots, he’s always made them. Or at least had a good chance to make them,” coach Tom Thibodeau said.

    So when he takes good shots, he at least has a good chance of making them? Not exactly a ringing endorsement, Coach.

    • bravesfan88

      Yeah, that was phrased oddly for sure by Thibs..Kind of a no s**t type of

      I mean obviously, we understand the point he was trying to get across, but still Thibs never fails to deliver one of these gems per press conference/

      Honestly though, all joking aside, it would be HUGE for the Knicks to really get Knox’s confidence up and if they can get him to show some significant improvements this year..

      It shouldn’t be all that difficult to get some better results from Knox, as he almost can’t go anywhere but up, but if Thibs can really get him to buy in defensively, then I think Knox could be on the verge of turning his career around..

      Knox has all the tools and the talent in the world, and if he can lock in defensively, I think we could see Thibs mold him into his “new Luol Deng.”

  5. KnickerbockerAl

    Anyone who takes good shots has a chance of making them. It’s called good looks. Rookies take bad shots it’s called. Learning from your mistakes. I get that most don’t watch to see what’s really going on. But real fans do for most part. I can tell you real Knick fans we watch. We don’t need someone to tell us about a player. Not even a coach. We can see for ourselves. Knox has been yanked in and out of rotation. His growth has suffered cause of the disfunction of management. As has most our young players. It’s what happens on bad teams. Everyone looks out for themselves. It becomes territorial. It’s why it’s a good thing Thibs is here. He will get the most out of guys like Knox. And either play them or trade them. Knox is 21 has talent. Needs mins to get his act together. He absolutely has a future in NBA. Maybe not with us. But it will be up to him. NY is not for the weak. What kills me is Berman the Knick hater. He actually said this

    “ Marc Berman of The New York Post. Knox has emerged as a dangerous outside shooter, making nine of his last 10 from beyond the arc.”

    So he has two descent games. And now he’s dangerous. This guy Berman is a fraud. If he knew ball and cared at all about a young player with potential. He would say what I say. And just want someone like Thibs. To give him an honest chance. And do their job in developing their players. I mean the guy is younger than Toppin. Their draft pick this yr. It’s just hilarious.

    Thibs is the right choice and coach for this team. He will give them an honest shot to show up. He knows what NY can do to a young player. He will also look out for the team. And do what’s best. Even if it means trading them. In Thibs I trust ….
    Knox, Nttilikina will get better under Thibs. Smith imo can’t handle NY. He’s better off in a small market franchise. I hope he gives Brazdeikis a chance.

    • El Don

      Thibs is a bum & a bust, dude!
      One of the worst HC’s in the league!
      Gotta be in NYC where fans believe in him, hilarious, right?

  6. Simmons>Russ

    How to turn the Knicks around.

    Step 1: get a capable and Upto league standard point guard.
    Trade Juilius Randle and a second round pick for Terry Rozier.
    Rozier as a first year starter put up 18-4-4, he’s only 26 and his personality suits the Knicks franchise.

    Step 2: Don’t make this year your year.
    I know everyone says be patient but it’s been how many years since the playoffs.. but in all seriousness your not going to make the playoffs there’s the Magic, Wizards and Hawks all trying to get that eight seed.
    Plus in this years draft your going to have some real superstars available in the top 5 picks you want to be atleast in the top 10 and as close to the top as possible.

    Step 3: Draft a SF
    You have PG settled for now, you have Barrett locked at the 2, Toppin at the 4 and Robinson still developing into the long term 5. What you need is a superstar talent at the 3. Kevin Knox is not ever going to be that guy. I’m talking Jalen Johnson, Zaire Williams, Johnothan Kuminga, Scottie Barnes, these are the types of guys you should be scouting heavily.

    Step 4: Lastly don’t get superstars in FA
    Don’t overpay, don’t chase players but look for who will be useful on the court, great in the locker room, and will help these young guys improve.

  7. KnickerbockerAl

    I’d like Rozier or Dinwiddie. Randle seems to be trying to play better. I think he sees writing on the wall. Toppin is the future at PF. Knox will be given chance at SF. RJ can play it too. Thibs needs to settle on bench. I agree they have to get a PG. They will by TD or at draft. Knicks have potentially 50 mill coming off books. To make a big splash in FA or trade. We have to build a good core. Thibs will do that. I’m confident he will. Patience it’s coming. We are one of youngest teams in NBA.

    • Nbabrothers

      Starting five should be: 240 total minutes
      Mitchell/Noels 30/25 minutes
      Obi/Randle 30/20 minutes
      Knox/ RJ 30/10 minutes
      RJ/DSJ 20/10
      Quickley/Elfrid/DSJ 30/28/7

      • Nbabrothers

        Frank is a bust IMO. Burks can take some of Elfrid’s minutes and DSJ’s minutes

  8. nentwigs

    Nerlens Noel is going to change his name.
    He will become Nerlens Noe.
    That way there will be NO “L” !!

    • hiflew

      Gelatin seems like it would be a decent defender. Have you ever seen how it locks up peaches and grapes? They can’t escape the smothering defense.

  9. bravesfan88

    You’re clearly a bum and a moron if you think Thibs isn’t a good coach. You can ask anyone around the game of basketball, and he is one of the most well respected coaches in the NBA, and his players absolutely would follow him off a bridge if he told them to..

    Thibs knows how to create a winning culture, he knows how to create a tough, hard-working, and defensive minded atmosphere for his teams, and he knows how to help players get better.

    He might not like starting rookies, but behind the scenes he is constantly working with those same guys, and he is getting them ready to put them in the best position to succeed. That is exactly what he is going to do with all the younger Knicks that have been yanked around the past few seasons.

    Those players were put in a no-win situation, with a selfish culture around this entire team. That is something Thibs will NOT tolerate, and he will get these guys to play together amd as a team. That happens to be the number one thing this team needs. He will instill knowledge, excellent working habits, a defensive mindset, teach them how to be professionals, and he will infectiously eliminate this team’s “me-first” culture and atmosphere. He was the perfect hire for this Knicks team and their current needs!! If they buy in, unlike some of his former talented younger players in Minnesota, then they will definitely grow and develop as players and as a team..

    @El Dung – You’re either obviously a troll, or you just severely lack any basketball knowledge..I’m choosing the former, because I refuse to believe anyone is seriously that ignorant, that calls himself a basketball fan..

  10. I'm a starboy not a Dr...

    Knicks sure love to keep underachieving young players around (Ntlikina,Knox) clueless franchise indeed. Dolan is a clown….

  11. Ant1485

    Good points concerning trying to obtain rosier or dine idle. We need that sf.
    With next year draft full of talented guards the Knicks can play with what they got and next year draft a true pg or Sg and move rj to sf. But right now IQ looks like he may be able to handle the pg role. Nevertheless we can also start focusing on our reserves to build that up as well. A good rotation of about 3-5 solid players will do.
    I will keep an eye out for the sf mentioned who may come out.

    Lastly some of us posting are coming up with some sound ideas which shows we are thinking and managing intelligently. We may have some disagreements on some players or moves but some of us should be offered a position in the Knick organization as junior advisory board members.

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