In part one we look at the impact Cole Anthony could have on joining the roaster and what that could look like considering his offensive upside and on-ball defense.
Players like Anthony Edwards and LeMelo Ball could both potentially fit with the team.
However, Knicks fans know luck is NOT the Knicks friend but if there’s any lottery luck coming the Knicks way, a fan should maybe use it on this NBA betting guide.
Volume shooter, better version of Cole Anthony; however needing more shots to be in rhythm.
Frankly, if it wasn’t for Zion this past draft, we’d be talking about the physical gifts he has at 18 and his ability as a two-way player much differently. Edwards, Frank, and Barrett roaming around is NOT something any offense wants to see.
Best passer in the draft, odd form but it seems to work for him (Shawn Marion). Floor general, not as good off-ball. Better finisher than one might think for his size could be bullied in the NBA. Despite all of that, if he’s 70-80% of the hype any team would be lucky to have him.
Now as the focal of part two takes the belief in RJ Barrett being a true number one option. Whether it’s believing the Knicks can’t have good fortune or just doubt in his game, most don’t believe he is. Now deciding players with the skills, body, and focus RJ Barrett has in their rookie year isn’t wise. He has not even been properly surrounded by complementary talent.
Another floor spacer who’s passing ability is 2nd in the draft, great on AND off-ball could really allow Barrett to blossom. As the NBA world grows, the Garden grows with it. Expanding their draft pick to Europe could create a product on the court we’d call The French Connection.
The French Connection: Killian Haynes
Currently, the pick the Knicks have per tankathon (4th* worst record before play on March 6) Killian Haynes could be one of the key pieces next to Barrett and Mitch long term. Add the other French guard on the roaster and that’s already the prototypical** starting five one would want around Barrett.
Knox being the spacing four right now might seem haphazard but the issues with him are more between the shoulders, confidence. Assuming more investment and time is put to developing his game and fit to a team built around RJ has more promise of remedying that than the current system.
*Tied in wins with Atlanta and Minnesota
**Killian Haynes, Frank Ntilikina, RJ Barrett, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
Off the praise RJ gave Frank after the Houston game there’s no longer an argument for signing Frank long term or not. Respect the foundation player in RJ and keep players who not only complement his game but whom he also respects.
Back to Killian, his per-game numbers won’t jump out because of the structure on his team; however, he projects to be an above league average floor spacer, an excellent passer with the ability to play off-ball. He can get a bit too creative with his passes, leading to turnovers. Defensively he fouls a bit too much but he’s good at forcing turnovers and reading passing lanes. Being 18, he also has the time to grow his game on both sides.
Much how having floor spacing with Cole would open the floor for RJ, Killian would do so with less usage and being a better passer. The ball would be on a string, whirling down the tracks towards winning basketball; hence, The French Connection. If Killian can develop a P&R game alongside Robinson, that would mean there would be three perimeter players who can all feed him as he rolls to the hoop.
Mixing in some shooting from a more confident Knox, a more in control RJ, and a projected plus shooter in Killian, there’s not going to be many games when the offense can be stopped. Defensively Killian can focus on passing lanes, feel the safety of Mitchell behind him while Frank and RJ focus on-ball.
Teams will have fits trying to score themselves assuming these players are healthy.
Young players are always going to struggle to adjust to the NBA and their growing bodies, but a Knicks team centered around The French Connection could be competitive and fun ever game they hit the court.
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