The key to the New York Knicks having a successful 2022-2023 season was their consistency on the defensive end. New York boasted the second-best defensive rating last playoffs in 11 games played, better than the MVP-residing Sixers and a star-studded Phoenix Suns team. The optimism for this upcoming season is rooted in defensive prowess, but the ability to maximize success lies in consistency on the offensive end.
The Knicks have a young core of players
Head coach Tom Thibodeau insists on developing the Knicks’ encouraging young core, saying, “We’re looking forward to the development of the guys we do have.”
With wide speculation of various disgruntled stars making their way to the Mecca, the Knicks have a treasure chest of great talent and high expectations valuing their development over any rumors.
Last playoffs the New York Knicks ranked 13th in offensive rating after boasting the fourth-best in the regular season. Consistency and sustainability on the offensive end make the Knicks not only playoff-bound but an NBA championship contender.
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Can RJ Barrett develop into a superstar?
The development of Knicks star RJ Barrett is the perfect way to highlight the potential this team possesses. Speaking with Steve Aschburner, Thibodeau stated in regards to building on last season, “Trial and error is a big part of learning so the more experience you get in big games the better it is for you.”
Representing Team Canada in the 2023 FIBA World Cup, Barrett took home Bronze following an impressive win over Team USA. Barrett averaged 16 points throughout the tournament. He finished strong, averaging 23 points, and six rebounds over the final three games, demonstrating the ability to be a consistent second option in big-stakes games.
Barrett, now with gained confidence going into year five, must display the ability to translate his dominant performances and go into this year in mid-season form.