Entering his first full season as one of the cornerstone stars of the New York Knicks, Dennis Smith Jr. intends to use the summer to work on his game.
At this point, the 21-year-old will reportedly be focusing on developing his shooting and conditioning during the offseason.
“He’s focused on shooting and conditioning, 1000 percent,” Smith Jr.’s longtime trainer, Shawn Farmer, said in a phone interview Friday with Ian Begley of SNY.
“Besides repetition with his shooting, he’s going to do some mechanical tweaks. He’s realized that there are some things in his mechanics that have to change,” Farmer said of Smith Jr., who shot 42 percent overall and 32 percent from behind the arc last season. “From what I’m hearing, he’s going to work with a couple of the Knicks assistant coaches. And he’s going to do some stuff on his own, which is to be determined. But his main focus is mechanics.”
Smith Jr. and his camp appear to have successfully pinpointed the specific area they want to work on in terms of improving his shot, and hopefully for the Knicks faithful, this comes to fruition in the upcoming season.
Moreover, the 6-foot-3 point guard also recognizes the need to take his conditioning to a whole new level as he embarks in what should be the most challenging season of his career to date.
“His goal, from just talking to his dad, is to be in the best shape of his life,” added Farmer. “Being in shape, some guys think they’re in shape but then when you start playing an 82-game season, then you realize, ‘Hey I’m not really not in shape like I thought I was.’ …. So he’s definitely on board with trying to be the most well-conditioned athlete on the floor.”
A lot will be riding on Smith Jr.’s shoulders in the coming year, and it seems that he is prepared to face the challenges head on.