The New York Knicks did the best thing for their youth in free agency

New York Knicks, Kevin Knox, RJ Barrett

Some might argue that the New York Knicks did their team a huge disservice by signing multiple veterans that will ultimately pick up a ton of playing time in 2019. My argument is the opposite.

As an organization, babying your players and not allowing them to compete hurts them more than anything. Competition brings the best out of athletes, and that’s why signing a slew of veterans to come in and steal playing time away from guys like Kevin Knox, Allonzo Trier, Mitchell Robinson and Damyean Dotson makes perfect sense.

Complacency is a dangerous thing, but it can be avoided by testing the younger players’ will power and ensuring they’re mentally ready to take on the challenge.

Who did the New York Knicks sign?

This offseason, the Knicks signed Marcus Morris, Julius Randle, Elfrid Payton, Reggie Bullock, Wayne Ellington, Bobby Portis, and Taj Gibson. Knox might be hurt the most by the excessive amount of power forward the team brought in, but it’s necessary for his development.

A majority of these deals are one/two-year deals with a team option, allowing the Knicks the theoretically move on after one season and open up cap-space to pursue a superstar in 2020-21. This is the right way to do things, as guaranteeing another year without playoffs just won’t fly in NY anymore. It’s simply time to contend no matter the cost.

Why will Kevin Knox struggle the most?

Selected ninth overall in 2018, Knox was never seen as a superstar right off the bat, but rather a long-term play for the team. Finishing his rookie campaign with 12.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and a 47 true shooting percentage in 57 starts, it was realized that the forward needed more time than expected to reach his potential.

With playing time being the primary need, the Knicks added a ton of power forwards to shuffle him to the bottom of the roster. Knox has the ability to play both forward positions, but Randle and Portis will be frequent flyers at power forward and Bullock/Morris at small forward.

The logic behind this move doesn’t make much sense to me, but he was the only player that really struggled out of the Mitchell Robinson, Trier and Dotson grouping, and he was their first-round pick last year. Next season will be his time to show he can be the player the Knicks desperately need him to be.