Coachability is something that must be present in players looking to take their game to the next level. For the New York Knicks, rookie Immanuel Quickley is already taking to the new system Tom Thibodeau has deployed. With an aggressive defensive style, Quickley is still finding his sea legs in the NBA, but heâ€™s already flashed signs of great offensive prowess.
The Knicks acquiring Derrick Rose was an interesting move, but his relationship with Thibodeau and some of the coaches on the roster make him a mentor and a situational player. At 32 years old, Roseâ€˜s best days are behind him, but he can still make an impact by helping Quickley reach his potential.
â€œIt shouldnâ€™t be too hard with him,â€™â€™ Rose said. â€œWeâ€™re similar. Heâ€™s getting double-teamed in his rookie year. There ainâ€™t too many rookies getting that type of attention. For him to see that kind of early, itâ€™s just going to make his game better. The game is going to slow down more. And he listens. Thatâ€™s the greatest thing about him, he listens. With that, you always got room for improvement. Heâ€™s a dog. Heâ€™s a dog. I canâ€™t explain it. Youâ€™ve got to be a player to understand it. Weâ€™re in a fight, I know heâ€™s fighting.â€™â€™
The New York Knicks can still extract value from Rose on the court:
In Derrickâ€™s first game as a Knick, he played 20 minutes and scored 14 points. He was adequate to start his second stint with New York, as Quickley played 21 minutes and scored seven points.
Rose offered the rookie plenty of advice, and as Quickley always does, he listened carefully to each and every word. The Knicks made this move to help mentor their young players, and what better person to do it than one of the best point guards of all time.
â€œHe just stressed to me â€” first of all he gave me his number â€” said anything I need just hit him,â€ Quickley said. â€œBut he sat down with me a little bit, me and Obi actually, just told us heâ€™s here to help us, heâ€™s here to help us grow and things like that. Itâ€™s good to get a chance to talk to him a little bit last night.â€
Despite the motivating talk, the Knicks fell to the Miami Heat 98-96 on Tuesday evening. The game came down to the final moments, and it has become increasingly clear that New York struggles to close out games. They have a long way to go, but Thibodeau is laying out a strong foundation for them to build on, so I expect positive growth in the near future.