Cam Reddish’s emergence buys Knicks more time for Quentin Grimes’ recovery

Cam Reddish, New York Knicks
Oct 19, 2022; Memphis, Tennessee, USA; New York Knicks forward Cam Reddish (0) reacts with guard Evan Fournier (13) after making a three point basket with 3.3 seconds left in regulation against the Memphis Grizzlies at FedExForum. Mandatory Credit: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks are not in a rush to bring Quentin Grimes back. The second-year wing will sit out Friday’s game against the Detroit Pistons as he continues to recover from left foot soreness.

The injury didn’t occur in a single incident during the training camp. It’s just the accumulation of the heavy workload he’s done preparing for the season.

“They said it was kind of an overuse thing. Just being in the gym a lot (in the summer). Coming back at night, going back to Houston, working on it and working on it. Then [Tom Thibodeau] had us in there for sure, working out [in training camp]… It was an overuse thing really.”

Quentin Grimes via SNY

Grimes split his time in the offseason working out in Houston with NBA skills trainer Ben Perkins and Memphis with ex-Knick and current Tigers coach Penny Hardaway. His hard work bore fruit with an All-NBA Summer League Team selection in Las Vegas last July after leading the Knicks to the finals.

After Day 1 of the training camp, Grimes was seen on a walking boot. He briefly returned in the Knicks’ preseason finale last week. But it flared up, and the Knicks decided to shut him down. There is no clear timeline for his recovery but the Knicks have a good reason to be patient.

Cam Reddish’s sensational season debut in their tough 115-112 overtime loss in Memphis in their season opener may have bought them more time for Grimes’ recovery.

Looked lost for much of his time in New York since his arrival in January via trade, Reddish became an afterthought until his 22-point explosion Wednesday night.

With his confidence back, Reddish looks to make a fitting follow-up against the rebuilding Pistons.

“Let me say it like this: I know what I can do. I wanted to make sure I still got it.”

Cam Reddish I Knicks-Grizzlies postgame

After going 6 of 28 in the preseason, Reddish found his rhythm early in Memphis, hitting his first two three-pointers that set the tone for him.

His confidence, and Thibodeau’s confidence in him, grew as the game went on to the point that he was given the opportunity to make the final shot in the regulation.

“I think I was like an option. I don’t it was set for any specific person. It was kind of just making the right read and Jalen (Brunson) made a great pass. I was open and took that shot.”

Cam Reddish I Knicks-Grizzlies postgame

It was the same play that Thibodeau ran with Derrick Rose and Reggie Bullock during their magical 2021 playoff run.

Despite his preseason struggles, Reddish kept on pushing until he broke through. But one solid game doesn’t cut it. He knows it.

“I’m just trying to stay grounded. That’s one game. We got 81 more. So I’m just trying to stay focused.”

Cam Reddish I Knicks-Grizzlies postgame

After an awful shot selection in the preseason, Reddish went to his main strength — his athleticism and length. He abandoned the low-percentage perimeter jumper that plagued him earlier. His defensive effort fed off his game as he relentless attacked the rim in the open lane. He was unstoppable against the Grizzlies.

Cam Reddish’s shot chart vs Grizzlies

Reddish showed the potential that the Knicks saw in him when they gave up a conditional first-round pick to acquire him from the Hawks. Now the question is, can he sustain it with some level of consistency?

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

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