Donte DiVincenzo is ready to prove he is worth every penny of the four-year, $50 million contract he signed with the New York Knicks this summer.
DiVincenzo Brings Championship Experience to the Knicks Bench
Stefan Bondy of the New York Post shared how DiVincenzo views his new opportunity with the Knicks as more freeing, saying:
“Last year I’m essentially on a one-year deal. Your anxiety, that’s more pressure. And you’re playing — when you’re playing with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson and Draymond [Green], what they’ve done, that’s pressure.”
DiVincenzo has dealt with high-pressure situations since his days at Villanova University but has spent most of his playing career as a reserve. He led the Wildcats to a thrilling NCAA National Championship as a spark plug off the bench before quickly capturing an NBA title with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021.
Though he started all 66 games for the Bucks that year, most of his tenure was spent backing up shooting guards Malcolm Brogdon and Grayson Allen and continued on the Golden State Warriors’ second unit last season.
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Is DiVincenzo Destined for a Breakout Season in New York?
Now DiVincenzo enters a Knicks lineup backing up Quentin Grimes in the rotation but could very well experience the most playing time of his career under Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau.
‘Free-flowing’ may not be the most accurate characterization of Thibodeau’s offensive play calling and former Knicks point guard Derrick Rose alluded to that during Memphis Grizzlies training camp. Yet and still, DiVincenzo’s playmaking ability gives strength to the Knicks’ bench.
DiVincenzo is a reliable three-point shooter and has no problem creating his own shot off the dribble. His skill set is needed for a Knicks team that struggled to generate easy opportunities in the half-court. He comes from a Warriors offense that freed up easy looks off of backdoor cuts and baseline screens better than any other team in the NBA.
His career 42 percent clip from the floor is a weak point in an otherwise strong offensive arsenal for the 26-year-old scorer. With a New York offense that runs a lot of set plays, DiVincenzo figures to be the recipient of many open looks from outside and carries over his career-high 39.7 percent marker from downtown into this season.
The Knicks’ bench is filled with high-energy players including Josh Hart and Isaiah Hartenstein. They give Thibodeau the option to up the ante and play with more pace when in for the starting unit.
DiVincenzo has ample time to continue his steady play in a Knicks uniform. It would not come as a surprise if the five-year veteran finds himself in the starting lineup at some point in the season.