David Fizdale doesn’t plan on moving Kevin Knox to the bench
For the New York Knicks, this season has been about preparing for the future and developing a young but talented roster. One of their core young pieces moving forward is Kevin Knox, who the team drafted ninth overall in the NBA draft last summer. While he has shown incredible potential at times, he has also faced struggles, particularly shooting.
Head coach David Fizdale isn’t looking to do anything other than use this as an opportunity to help him grow, though. Marc Berman of the New York Post detailed Fizdale’s comments on the possibility of bringing Knox off the bench:
“We thought about it, but I want to force him through this right now. This is from a lesson standpoint for Kevin is not to reset him, to force him to play through all of these struggles and all of this pain right now and fight his way out of this. So that’s why I want to keep him in that lineup, keep him against starting threes as much as possible and let him go through the bumps and the bruises.”
Knox has started in 39 of the 57 games he’s played in his rookie year. For the season, he is averaging 12.4 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 1.0 assist per game while shooting 36.1 percent from the field and 33.1 percent from beyond the arc.
Knox was named a starter during the month of December and his efficiency since has experienced some decline. Since the start of 2019, the rookie is shooting 34.8 percent overall and only 29.9 percent on his 3’s. Much of this is due to being guarded by, and having to defend, other teams starting small forward.
Fizdale is on to something by mentioning that this experience will help him grow and become a better player. Even if it costs them a few games here and there in the meantime, that may not be the worst thing that could happen for the Knicks, who are destined to have some great odds in the upcoming draft lottery.