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  1. #1
    Veteran mafra's Avatar
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    Default 2020-2021 NY Knicks

    Here we go... season about to rev to life.

    Thibs is here... He got both CHI and MIN to improve their win total by 10+ games his first season with those respective clubs.

    How does he mold and handle this neophyte roster of gym rats?

    Payton and Rivers and RJ will play heavy minutes, along with the next 2 guards to step up. I imagine Frank, with his defensive, will be in the mix... this means DSJ, IQ, Powell and the rest will be fighting for 1 role of 10 minute scraps.

    Payton
    RJ
    Bullock
    Randle
    Robinson

    Thatsís the starting 5 I see Thibs going with.

    Frank, Burks, Noel first 3 off the bench. Obi or Knox, DSJ or IQ see 4 battle for 2 spots.

    Thatís probably what weíll see early from Thibs?

    Or, do you suppose, itíll be all about playing the kids, and employing the more experienced players as reserve mentor types?


    DSJ
    Frank
    RJ
    OBI
    Robinson

    Will any of the lottery teenage kid club types finally blossom? DSJ, Frank, Knox? Will RJ morph into Jimmy Butler or just be an average player with poor shooting percentages and mediocre peripherals? Did RJ suffer from no spacing, not having a PG, or lack of shooting? Can he rise above that or could coaching and system forge him into that?

    This team is healthy. Itís going to be interesting to see if they can at least battle for the 10th seed.

  2. #2
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    But while the Knicks arguably did the smart thing this offseason by adding to their draft capital and keeping their payroll flexibility for another run at stars next offseason, their current roster leaves a lot to be desired.

    The above will be a challenge for new head coach Tom Thibodeau, who will have to balance development of his young core with making progress in the win column.

    How exactly will Thibodeau do it? And what does he think about the offseason moves -- or lack thereof?

    "There's obviously different roads you can go down," Thibodeau told reporters Tuesday via Zoom. "And I think if you study how teams are built -- and I went through this in Minnesota. And obviously the draft is critical, free agency is critical, player development is critical and trade opportunities are critical. And when you look back at Philadelphia and what they went through -- and obviously they went through a lot of losing and were able to get (Joel) Embiid and (Ben) Simmons. But when they added veterans, thatís when they took off.

    "I think you look at the four avenues and try to build your plan that way. I thought we had a well thought out plan and we took advantage of some things we thought were good for us. But we wanted to be disciplined. And we were. There will be other opportunities moving forward. But we concentrate on the players we have here. Concentrate on our improvement. And hopefully good things will happen."

    When it comes to playing time, Thibodeau said it will not be given to anyone, regardless of status. Instead, players will have to earn their time.

    That would be a departure from how things went under former head coach David Fizdale, though it's fair to wonder how much of Fizdale's strategy was due in part to a front office/ownership that actually expected to be competitive last season.

    For Thibodeau, he's focused on both individual development and team development.

    "When you look at a guy like RJ (Barrett) and look at a guy like Obi (Toppin) and Immanuel Quickley and Kevin Knox and our point guards, we have several players there," Thibodeau explained. "And I like that there's competition. Nothing will be given to anyone. Youíre going to have to earn your minutes. And those decisions on rotation will be based on performance and what gives the team the best chance of winning. A player is not just going to get minutes just to get minutes.

    "You have to impact winning, you have to put the team first. There has to be sacrifices made. And that's what we're going to strive for every single day. We have a very strong staff. The focus is going to be on teaching and work. We know there's a lot of work to be done. If we look at where we stood last year, there's a lot of ground to be made up. When you look at the rosters of the teams we're competing against, the challenge will be how together we will be. The degree of how together and how smart is going to be critical for us."

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    But Toppin is the focus right now, because Toppin is the one so many of them saw torch college basketball last year, enjoying a storybook run right up until the pandemic robbed Daytonís Flyers a chance to write an otherworldly final chapter. Toppin is the one who reported for work as quickly as he could get here, who has already impressed with his work ethic in individual sessions.

    ďIíve really been connecting with him,Ē said Barrett, whose workout times coincided with Toppinís. ďGreat dude, heís a hard worker for sure. Very talented, very athletic, very versatile. Exciting to have him on our team. I feel like weíll play well together.Ē

    Said Thibodeau: ďWe liked the fact that we felt he would be ready to play right away. I think the big thing for him was the shooting piece of it, the way he can stretch the floor, we think that will be a big plus for us. Of course, the defensive part is something we have to work on. And we have to do that as a team. But I think his ability to play multiple positions, his ability to put the ball on the floor and make plays, I think thatís a big asset in todayís NBA.Ē

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    Starting lineup opening day. Might be disappointing to some but no rookie team is going to be playing over vets with a short training camp and 4 preseason games. Maybe we get to see the rookies get some serious burn a month into the season, guys still selling JR short, Obi is not starting over the Knicks best player. I hope either Nits or DSJ have improved enough in the off season to take EPs starting PG spot but as of the end of last season Payton was the best PG on the roster and deserves the nod as the starter.

    EP
    AB
    JR
    RJ
    MR

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    Thibs said he is only playing the younger guys if they give us a better chance at winning. Guys need to earn playing time and honestly, if Ntilikina, DSJ, and Toppin canít outplay Payton and Randle, they probably belong on the bench.

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    Amen. I imagine heíll lean on ďvetsĒ early in... Randle, EP, Bullock, Rivers, Burks, and either they play themselves out of rotation or kids take their jobs by performing well in practice and producing in their 16-22 minute reserve role.

    I feel RJ and Obi will be part of the rotation, with Mitch & Noel taking all the C minutes.

    Frank, DSJ, Knox, IQ and the rest will have to fight and earn it.

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    Austin Rivers with a thoughtful answer on why he joined the Knicks:

    "We're in an era where everybody likes riding a wave...people have lost interest in going somewhere and making something great again."

    "People not wanting to come here? Our job is to change that."

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    Another year another lottery pick. I just hope to see Obi, Mitch, Frank and RJ develop

    And i would like to see Julius no handles Randle gone as well as Kevin Knox. Wouldnt mind seeing them traded together

    Its make or break time for DSjr. I do hope he can show us something so the Krippledstaps Porzingis trade doesnt look as bad

    As great as Porkneetwist looked in the playoffs with the Mavs, it remains to be seen if he can stay healthy

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    There are some serious reservations about OTís ability to move laterally and backwards, which are necessary skills to be a decent defender. He also lacks defensive awareness.... but, he has Thibs and showed up in phenomenal shape!

    IQ-RJ-Obi-Mitch is the foundation. I just hope these 4 play a ton of minutes together. If we are to flip the narrative and attract talent like Giannis... these 4 need to be impactful rotation pieces in a 35+ win team!

    So, why not just start EP, Rivers, Bullock, Randle-Noel. Then play Burks with the core-4. Knox, DSJ and Frank and everybody else fighting for scraps unless performance in practice and production on the court dictate otherwise.

    Let the experienced guys set the tone and start the game. Sub in the second unit and let them run the show and the adjust roles in n the fourth based on the first 3 quarters.

    But if I am Thibs I am walking into the first 20 games with the thinking I am treating the start of the season as an extended raining camp for the kids under 24...easing them into their roles gradually, and forging them in the crucible of earning yours.

    I am coaching them. Let them watch and see how game develops and then face the second units. They need to learn his brand of bball.

    Defer to the guys with experience bc of the short camp, because itís in the best interest of the team to this season, to get off to a good start, but thinking this way.

    Now, if you ďsee it and know it to be trueĒ and somebody steps up or somebody falters, then you adjust according here. But, the best for all is to establish a role and vision immediately, and pit the experienced vs the inexperienced. Use it to bond them in healthy competition, and to understand they need each other to excel individually.

    Then, air back and evaluate.


    Donít count Knox our just yet.

    ďI prided myself in staying in the gym,íí Knox said when asked if he feels he has something to prove. ďThis season is huge for me. Going into the season, I have a lot of confidence right now. The coaching staff has a lot of faith in me. Iím expecting a huge season from me.

    Obi and Knox are redundant, unless either prove capable of playing the 3... but this is year 3 and he has a solid support structure. Will he get a legit opportunity? Will he force the issue?

    With Randle, I feel itíll be hard to develop both Knox and Obi. Sink or swim kids.

    The problem with DSJ and Frank, is I donít see them offering more than what EP and Rivers bring. Toss in Bullock and Burks... and even IQ... just seems like there are 7 guys for 4 roles...

    Other than Mitch and Noel as starter and backup and gobbling most of the C minutes... I have no clue what to expect from the other 4 spots.

    With the off court stuff from last year, itís possible DSJ and Bullock are twice the player this year they were from last year.

    Anyway, I kind of like all the uncertainty. Iím interested to see how it plays out. We saw what Miller was able to get from the team, more than Fiz.

    Can Thibs make the sum greater than the parts here?

    Rivers-Burks-Bullock-Randle-Noel are going to truly force the kids to earn it. Letís see...
    Last edited by mafra; Dec 04, 2020 at 02:06.

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    Would be nice if DAL struggles this year for whatever reason and NYK end up with a second pick in the lottery, are even a top 20 pick. This draft is loaded!

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    Nyk Logo

    I would like to have Frank & DSJ as the Knicks starting backcourt in the 2020-21 season.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiyaman View Post
    I would like to have Frank & DSJ as the Knicks starting backcourt in the 2020-21 season.

    I posted I saw Kenny Wooten knock down 11-14 corner 3s in a workout and they cut him. Wooten was a good defender as well but they thought he reached the limit of his potential. This has to be a breakout year for Nits in the last year of his rookie deal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tiger0330 View Post
    I posted I saw Kenny Wooten knock down 11-14 corner 3s in a workout and they cut him. Wooten was a good defender as well but they thought he reached the limit of his potential. This has to be a breakout year for Nits in the last year of his rookie deal.

    I too, was hoping for a new president/and new head-coach having FA/Trading clout to get the 2020-21 Knicks team a star leadership starting PG (Chris Paul or Westbrook) for the next two-season to mentor our two final year rookie contract PG Frank/DSJ into keepers.

    Coach Thibs & Rose decision-making in the draft was ok (Quickly & OBI)! However .. But! When it came to the trade-market, and the FA market to get the Knicks some team-ball veteran-players .....Rose/Thibs and company has Failed badly! Bad enough to get the Knicks a Top-3 pick in the 2021 Draft .. We may become lucky if we could win 20 games out of 72 gms. SAD !!!

    Austin Rivers passing-skills experience to get the ball to a moving Barrett, Knox, Randle or MitchRob may become the Knicks best assist PG in the upcoming season. I recall back in the daze when his Pops (Doc Rivers) were the Knicks starting PG, we were a playoff team back then.

    Rookie Quickly is a fast moving quick-shooter that performance may demand more minute than RJ Barrett at the guard spot.

    Does coach Thibs have a offensive system yet ???

  14. #14
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    Best case scenario is that DSJ and Frank force Thibs to start them!

    DSJ
    Frank
    RJ
    Randle
    Mitch

    With Obi, Knox and IQ as 6th men scoring dynamos....

    Win 32 games with this 8 predominately and then weíll attract Giannis type talent.

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    When asked about his initial impression of Mitchell Robinson, Tom Thibodeau said "he's got a long way to go."
    ďHeís had some really good moments, but I think heís got a long way to go,Ē said Thibs. ďThe work part, the professionalism to continue to grow to impact winning, thereís a lot of room for growth Ė I think the discipline to practice well each and every day.Ē This isn't the first time Robinson's commitment has been questioned, as he reportedly rubbed a lot of the coaches with the 2019 USA Select Team the wrong way by showing up late and leaving early, and attitude issues are why he fell to the second round in the 2018 NBA Draft. He also averaged 7.6 fouls per 100 possessions last season, and if he can't get that under control, it won't matter how many minutes Thibs has planned for him. He'll be battling Nerlens Noel for the starting center spot at camp, but we're not huge fans of him after last year's immensely disappointing season.

    SOURCE: NY Daily News
    Dec 5, 2020, 9:48 AM ET

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