New York Knicks: Who will have more impact in 2019 – Kevin Knox or RJ Barrett?

New York Knicks, Kevin Knox, RJ Barrett

The New York Knicks drafted Duke star RJ Barrett with the 3rd overall pick just a few short months ago, but will he be a focal point during the 2019-20 season or will Kevin Knox finally blossom.

Knox, who struggled tremendously during his rookie campaign, is looking to break out after an impressive string of Summer League game. However, these development-driven games don’t always translate to the NBA where the defenders are more physical, and the offenses are well-oiled.

The Knicks’ 2018 first-round pick has the potential to be an impact player, but it ultimately comes down to playing time and finding a way to get into the court after numerous veteran free-agent signings. He will battle Marcus Morris and others to continue building upon his skill-set.

It’s even possible head coach David Fizdale elects to start him at the beginning of the season in hopes he rises to the occasion, but Barrett will surely test his competitive nature in seek of playing time himself. Knox’s primary strength is getting to the rim and using his length to beat defenders on the interior.

He struggled to beat more prominent defenders and attack the rim with the same tenacity he did in college. While this could be a bi-product of his lack of muscle mass, this season should see him improve in that department. Additionally, his three-point show was a focal point during the offseason, which should help the momentum of the offense and add an essential part to his game.

How will the New York Knicks utilize RJ Barrett?

The Canadian rookie had a tough Summer League but progressed well with every passing game. The expectation is that he will be a starting player at some point in the season. Whether or not it’s right off the bat is to be seen. Barrett is an extraordinary scorer that has a high motor and can push the floor with speed. He’s also a quality passer.

He will have an impact in his rookie season, but it won’t be significant. His development will take 1-2 years, but he has the potential to be an All-Star-caliber player. If he can add a consistent perimeter shot and adapt to the physicality of the NBA, he can be an essential puzzle piece for the Knicks moving forward.