SPANISH HARLEM, NY – Kristaps Porzingis is having the time of his life right now. Not only has he played well but he is starting to talk like a superstar when asked about his improved play. Ask yourself this question “how many people in the NBA are playing better basketball than the UNICORN?” Some can say James Harden or Giannis Antetokounmpo but only the Greek Freak is scoring more per game than KP. At this point you can actually say Porzingis is a top 15 talent in the league without someone slapping you in the face. He has become the leader of a young team that seems to be gaining confidence each day. Back to back wins in a row can do that for a team but what has surprised many is that they came back to win from a deficient of 10+ points in both games going into the 4th quarter.
So just how good has this season been so far for KP? If you look up the New York Knicks history books, it will tell you that KP has scored the most points EVER through the first 9 games to start a season. When you start adding your name to players like Bernard King and Patrick Ewing, you are definitely playing lights out because those two players were some of the best scoring athletes that New York had ever seen at MSG. What’s even more impressive is that those points are coming in the flow of the game and when he gets hot, the players around him are getting him the ball. When you add that there isn’t a second scoring option on this team, it shows just how efficient the Unicorn has been.
But that’s enough about KP, let’s get to more good news. Frank Ntilikina is growing up right before our very eyes. With big minutes in the 4th quarter the last two games, Frank has given the city reason for hope that they have finally found their point guard of the future. And to Ben’s assessment that some will give Phil Jackson credit for this, I say to you “let it go man, Phil sucked and deserved to be fired“. Ntilikina was a projected lottery pick going into last season and a top ten pick in the minds of many. So far he has proven those experts right and filled a role on this team that has been a weakness for too long.
Frank’s play on the defensive side of the ball is mature for someone who is only 19 years old and he is taking on all comers (Check out his defense on James Harden). The offense will come around as he gains more confidence but he needs to penetrate the lane a lot more for him to fully reach his potential. On a negative side his handle is not great by any stretch of the imagination but his instincts and the way he gets the ball to players in easy ways to score is something that was talked about by many to be his 2nd best attribute. His assists are up and his turnovers are down, which shows someone who is getting more comfortable in this offense. He is improving with every minute he is given and that’s a good sign for the Knicks.
By the way, the Garden is rocking again and the fans have been tremendous. It’s important to win at home and get the fans behind you but New York is a different beast. If you play your heart out and show the fans that you are in every game, they will bring the energy needed to help propel this team when they have a chance to win. I’m not saying the Knicks are back but I will say they are improving and playing hard, that’s all I ask for.
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