While it may appear that Knicks coach Derek Fisher has begun to replace rookie Jerian Grant in the team’s rotation with Sasha Vujacic, the coach insists it is more about keeping the veteran ready rather than the coaching staff losing faith in the struggling Grant, Marc Berman of The New York Post writes. “I’m trying to give us a spark, see if he can make a shot or two, bring some energy and tenacity to the game,’’ Fisher said. “We’re going to need Sasha through the course of the season. It’s important not to have guys have a down vibe by sitting and watching too much. You got to get some action.’’
Fisher did acknowledge that teams have figured out how to defend Grant, who will need to figure out a way to counter the adjustments teams have made against him, Berman adds. “People watch us play, the same way we watch them play,” Fisher continued. “Some guys have made adjustments to how they’re defending him. He’ll learn how to still do what he does best in terms of getting penetration.’’
Here’s more from the Atlantic Division:
- The Raptors assigned rookie Delon Wright to the Raptors 905, their D-League affiliate, the team announced. This is Wright’s first D-League trip of the season.
- Nets center Brook Lopez was mentioned in numerous trade rumors connecting him to the Thunder last season. When asked what it would be like playing in Oklahoma City with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, Lopez said, “It would have been interesting. You can ask them about it tomorrow and report back to me,” Mike Mazzeo of ESPN.com relays (ESPN Now link). The big man did note that he was happy in Brooklyn, Mazzeo adds.
- Knicks camp cut DaJuan Summers, who plays for the team’ D-League affiliate, has suffered an injury to his left Achilles tendon and will miss the remainder of the season, the Westchester Knicks announced (Twitter link). The 27-year-old appeared in three D-League contests this season and was averaging 25.3 points and 10.3 rebounds per game.