Despite the New York Knicks showing serious optimism in regard to the future of the organization, there has been a glaring weakness that has been present so far this season.
The Knicks suffered a 128-112 loss to the Houston Rockets over the weekend, which should already unveil the weakness. The defense has been horrendous. On one side you have three rookie players that’re receiving significant playing time, which is ultimately the developmental steps that head coach David Fizdale needs to be taking. On the other, you have aging veterans that are failing to pick up the slack.
Fizdale has made it a priority to get his youth plenty of live-game experience, and their offensive prowess has been impressive. Their defense on the other hand needs plenty of work. Big man, Mitchell Robinson, has showed a keen ability to record blocks using his 7-foot-1 frame. He has recorded 14 blocks so far this year.
Other than Robinson, the only other quality defender on the team is Frank Ntilikina. Rookie Allonzo Trier has the offensive shimmy but lacks quality on the defensive side. Now, I believe that this team will need time to progress to a point where they’re strong on both sides of the ball. The physicality of the NBA requires experience and veteran strength, something the Knicks simply don’t have.
How did the youth on the New York Knicks perform against the Raptors?
Ntilikina and Damyean combined for 7 for 23, making only 2 of 10 from beyond the arch. Trier struggled against lengthy defenders, finishing just 2 for 6. Without Kristaps Porzingis’ impact, the Knicks have lacked the star-power to push them over the hump. With KP and another veteran star the Knicks could be on the the best teams in the East.