Veteran guard Evan Fournier began the 2022-23 season in the starting lineup for the New York Knicks. Seven games into the season he was moved to the bench. Yesterday against the Utah Jazz, he didn’t get off the bench.
Fournier wasn’t sure why he didn’t play, but he understands Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau’s decision as per Steve Popper of Newsday Sports.
Talked to Evan Fournier about being out of the rotation: "I always try to put myself in other people’s shoes. Thibs is trying to find a solution. I don’t think he made that decision because he don’t like me or anything like it’s a personal thing. He just wants to win, man."
— Steve Popper (@StevePopper) November 16, 2022
The Knicks have gotten off to an inconsistent start and currently sit at 7-7. They are in seventh place in the Eastern Conference Standings and it’s left Tom Thibodeau trying to find lineups that work. Not too long ago, Derrick Rose spoke out about his reduced role this season. A couple of days ago Thibodeau had to field questions about his decision to bench RJ Barrett.
A year ago, Evan Fournier was one of the Knicks’ most consistent players. He started in 80 games and was averaging 14.1 points per game while shooting 38.9 percent from three-point range. This season though, his production had taken a hit. He was only playing around 20 minutes per game while putting up 6.9 points. He is also shooting a career-low 34.4 percent from the field and 33.3 percent shooting from three-point range.
If the Knicks aren’t able to turn things around soon, Thibodeau could ultimately find himself on the hot seat amid disgruntled veterans. The Knicks offense has been okay and they are in the top half of the league in points per game at 114.9. It’s their defense that has been shaky. They currently sit at 24th in opponents points (116.4) and 22nd in defensive rating.