The New York Knicks are coming off a less than ideal 2021-22 season after finishing six games out of a play-in spot with a 37-45 record. Julius Randle slumped hard after an All-Star 2020-21 campaign, and the rest of the Knicks supporting cast couldn't pick up the lefty's slack, including Obi Toppin, Randle's primary backup, who failed to carve out a bigger role for himself two years after being selected eighth overall in the draft. But one of the Knicks' latest additions in particular could perhaps unlock Toppin's considerable potential.

Speaking with reporters during Knicks training camp, Obi Toppin raved about the addition of center Isaiah Hartenstein from the Los Angeles Clippers on a two year, $16.7 million deal, and with the two slated to share an ample amount of minutes together off the Knicks bench, their chemistry will be immense to the Knicks' hopes of being better than last season.

“It's gonna be amazing ‘coz [Hartenstein's] definitely a great passer. It's crazy ‘coz every chance that we're on the sidelines watching another group go or something, he's telling me ‘Oh, if you do this on this play, if you cut like that, just look for it, it might be late, it might be early… just always know I might pass it,'” Toppin said. “Having a big like that being able to pass out the post and being able to stretch the floor… it's amazing. We've been working this whole summer.”

Isaiah Hartenstein was a revelation last season with the Clippers amid their injury-plagued season. He emerged as one of the best backup centers in the league, averaging 8.3 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 2.4 assists to go along with active hands on defense as evidenced by his 0.7 steals and 1.1 blocks in only 18 minutes a night. If Hartenstein could cut down on his fouls after averaging 2.5 last season in limited minutes, he'd soon be pushing Mitchell Robinson for the starting center spot.

Knicks fans will look forward to the Obi Toppin-Isaiah Hartenstein connection next season, as it could lead to tons of highlights especially as they feast on opposing bench units. However, Toppin will be eager to show that exciting dunks are not the only thing he should be known for, and with Hartenstein by his side, he will find life easier on both ends of the court, which will be much to the Knicks' benefit.