When Tom Thibodeau took over new York Knicks, many things were certain. The Knicks would play tough basketball, they would play defense and the starters would play 450 minutes per game. Although no one expected the Knicks to be anything but disappointment. The only light at the end of the tunnel was the fact that they would get a decent pick in the draft. Knicks playoff prospects were not even discussed.
After failing to sign any major free agents and once again not getting top 3 picks, a classic tank season was expected in preparation for better years. But the Knicks surprised everyone who ensured playoff basketball for the Big Apple.
Knicks playoff chances
did you ask anybody nba What the Knicks playoff chances are in the off-season, everyone would say zero. If you ask Knicks fans they’ll probably be a little more optimistic but not by much. Vegas set over/under 22.5 wins which ranked them among the worst teams in the league.
As everyone knows, Vegas was terribly wrong as the Knicks won 41 games which was good enough for the fourth seed.
off season move
Somewhat surprisingly, the Knicks didn’t aggressively pursue any free agents this summer. Leon Rose, the new President of Basketball Operations, placed a strong emphasis on developing the youth corps.
Once again the ball didn’t go in his favor so Knicks was selected obi toppin With the 8th pick. It was a solid pick widely considered a good pick but the home run that turned out to be number 23 which became Emmanuel Quickly.
A remarkable trade was the one that landed them Derrick Rose With Detroit because, well, Thibodeau. they signed nerlens noel and Alec Berksow Which was great move especially considering the very team friendly contracts. was the biggest offseason move Recruitment of Tom Thibodeau Who once again showed what a good coach he really is.
how was it
The Knicks entered this season without too much optimism and you can see why in the first 15 games.
On February 10, the Knicks had an 11–15 record, good enough for 11th in the Eastern Conference. However, things were slowly starting to work out. Until the All-Star break, he had a 19-18 record.
The biggest driving force behind this was Julius Randall Joe deservedly went on to become an All-Star and soon you start to feel a sense of optimism in the Big Apple. After the break, he played .500 basketball for most of April. From April 10 to April 24, he won 9 games in a row and took a lead of over 500. His scintillating play continued in the end and he ended the year with a 41-31 record. A big boost in that heroic effort was Derrick Rose who played his best basketball in years during that stretch.
New York’s undisputed major player is Julius Randall. He played the best basketball of his career this year and should easily win best player award.
Randall, showing his full potential, bangs the Knicks completely. His numbers across the board are at career highs.
Another impressive thing is his three-point shooting which jumped from .277 to .413 this year. And he’s shooting two-thirds more per game than last year.
The Knicks will enter the postseason with the starting unit they relied on most this season. It is a unit that has shared floor 29 times this season. its elfrid payton, rj barrett, reggae bull, Julis Randall and Nerlens Noel. A key ingredient would be Derrick Rose and Taj Gibson from the bench. Both should see increased minute after season.
Knowing Thibodeau, the rotation would be shorter (7-8 players), with Toppin, Quickly and Nitlikina possibly getting minutes. There will be a noted absence Michelle Robinson Joe will miss the season after due to injuries.
Knicks playoff chances: Final thoughts and hopes
The New York Knicks is the biggest surprise of the 2021 season. One cannot draw different conclusions when you compare forecasts from analysts and sportsbooks.
Proper basketball returned to MSG And everything looks good. Thibodeau Eternal managed to make a playoff team from the losers. The roster managed to see it through on paper, but their status was earned after the season. The franchise eventually pursued developing young players instead of pursuing free agents.
Job coach Thibodeau should not go unnoticed as he will surely be on the shortlist for the Coach of the Year award.
The Knicks playoff prospects this year aren’t huge, but neither are their hopes. The fact that they would be playing post-season basketball is a success in itself, not a minor one. However, they should not be underestimated and they can spell trouble for any team in the past. They can advance to the second round as the Hawks are a good matchup for them. However, this would probably be the maximum limit for such a young and inexperienced team.
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