NBA

Thibodeau: Knox, Ntilikina & Smith Jr. Are Out of the New York Knicks’ Rotation

Jan 31, 2021; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau reacts as he coaches against the LA Clippers during the second quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

According to Ian Begley, a reporter covering the New York Knicks, the team’s rotation is about to be a bit shorter. The Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau claims Kevin Knox, Frank Ntilikina & Dennis Smith Jr are out of the Knicks’ regular rotation.

The average age in The New York Knicks’ roster is a bit under 25 years old, making them the 4th youngest team in the league. A lot of people credit the team’s early success to their young core playing better. Unfortunately, not all young guys are getting to show their growth on the court.

As reported by Begley, Tom Thibodeau said Kevin Knox’s role is “situational” right now. To elaborate, the Knicks plan on playing a 10-man rotation. And, with players at his position being healthy, there is no room for Knox. The 21-year-old forward started the season shooting great from three. Unfortunately, as the minutes started to decrease, so did his percentages behind the line. We’ll see what the future holds for the former 9th pick of the draft.

Dec 26, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II slam dunks the ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday, Dec. 26, 2020, in New York. The 76ers defeated the Knicks 109-89 at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports
POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

Knox isn’t the only young gun who isn’t playing as much as he hoped for this year. Dennis Smith Jr. found himself out of the rotation for eight straight games.

However, he doesn’t plan to sit and wait for an opportunity. Instead, he asked to play in the G League. The team granted his wish. According to the same source, Dennis Smith Jr. is heading to the G League bubble in Vegas to play for the Westchester Knicks. This is where he hopes to prove he is still NBA material.

Frank Ntilikina also lost his place in the rotation. He hasn’t played in the last 18 games, and his future in the league is questionable at the moment.


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