The New York Knicks desperately need to improve in one category

New York Knicks, Tom Thibodeau
Dec 31, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA;New York Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau reacts against the Toronto Raptors during the first quarter at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks having impressively won four of their last five games against difficult opponents. Their most recent victory over the Atlanta Hawks showed that they can beat teams with elite scorers like Trae Young.

The second half comeback secured the Knicks’ fourth win of the season, thanks to 28 points from Julius Randle and 26 from RJ Barrett. However, I would be remiss not to mention the 16 points that Immanuel Quickley secured, going 6-for-6 from the free-throw line. However, one specific category remains an issue for the team as they continue to gel and develop with one another.

The New York Knicks need to cut back on the turnovers:

Over the last three games, the Knicks have averaged 15 turnovers in each. To open the season, they landed at 16 and have since reached a high 25 against the Cleveland Cavaliers. The biggest victim to the turnover bug has been Julius Randle at 4.9. Behind him, Elfrid Payton is at 2.9, indicating a large margin between the first and second-ranked players in the category.

Nonetheless, New York continues to win games despite elevated numbers in the turnover section. Head coach Tom Thibodeau realizes this is an issue, but he does feel as though his team is playing good basketball.

“I think the togetherness is a big part of it. I think the willingness to share the ball, to play hard for each other,” Thibodeau said after Monday’s 113-108 win over the Hawks. “[But] it starts with our defense and the rebounding. We still have to get our turnovers down but I think just the overall way they’re playing for each other. I think that’s a big part of winning. They come in and they work every day.”

It is interesting that he mentions the team is playing for each other. Not only do they care and feel they have a special group that can do improbable things, but the youngsters are contributing as well. Quickley seems to be a potential solution at point guard for the long term, and while they are still waiting for Obi Toppin to return from a calf injury, second-year player RJ Barrett has looked phenomenal at times. He is currently averaging 18.3 points per game and 7.6 rebounds. If he can continue to develop and refine his game, the Knicks will be in great shape moving forward.