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  • McDermott, Hardaway Jr. Shine, Knicks Lose to Wizards to Mark Winless Preseason

McDermott, Hardaway Jr. Shine, Knicks Lose to Wizards to Mark Winless Preseason

Porzingis and Ntilikina sat in the preseason finale against the Wiz, which featured playing time for young guys like Dougie and THJ.

 

On Friday night, most New Yorkers and sports fans, in general, had their attention on Game 1 of the ALCS. However, while the Yankees battled the Astros in Houston, a more intense game was going in Madison Square Garden: The 0–4 Knicks’ final preseason game.

In all seriousness, this game was relatively important for New York’s young squad. After going winless in their first four preseason games, winning their final exhibition could set the tone for the beginning of the regular season. Friday’s game provided an extra look at how the new Knicks are doing, and how Coach Hornacek would look to run the team come the regular season.

With that being said, here are a few notes on the final installment of the Knicks’ preseason against Washington:


  • With Kristaps Porzingis (hip) and Frank Ntilikina (knee) out with minor injuries, Hornacek rolled out a starting lineup of Ramon Sessions, Tim Hardaway Jr., Courtney Lee, Michael Beasley, and Enes Kanter. Hornacek favored the Hardaway–Lee combination at the 2 and 3 this preseason, hinting at what we’ll most likely see in the starting lineup this regular season:

 

 

  • Doug McDermott put on a shooting display against the Wizards, shooting 8-of-12 from the field and 4-for-6 from three-point range, scoring 21 points. New York’s offense continuously flowed through McDermott when he was on the floor, and he was consistently able to get the Knicks quick buckets when they needed it. Doug could end up being a crucial part of the Knicks rotation this season, as he very well may be the best shooter on the roster:

 

 

  • The most valuable Knick this preseason has been Tim Hardaway Jr., who again impressed with a 23 point game. Hardaway is certainly one of, if not the most polished scorer New York has, and he’s shown it in these exhibition games. He’s not afraid to take command and score when the Knicks need a basket, and can score from nearly anywhere. Where THJ will be looked at to improve this season is on defense. It’s been hard to see if he’s truly evolved on the other side of the ball since his last stint as a ‘Bocker, since preseason basketball usually lacks defensive effort, but if Hardaway can hold his own on defense, that massive contract may very well end up being worth it:

 

 

  • The battle for starting center position developed some more tonight, as we saw Enes Kanter get the majority of big man minutes. Kanter performed well, rolling to the hoop for easy buckets and even making a couple of nice passes leading to scores. Kyle O’Quinn and Willy Hernangómez each had relatively quiet games, both receiving about 15 minutes of playing time. While Kanter is clearly the most skilled big man the Knicks have, I maintain that Willy should start alongside KP at the 5 to further develop his game while Enes provides a mentor role to the young bigs.
  • Michael “Walking Bucket” Beasley got the start against the Wizards, and had a bit of a rough game. Beasley forced a lot of his shots and couldn’t really get into the flow of things but hey, it’s the preseason. Come regular season Beas should be settled in and show us that “LeBron James/Kevin Durant” potential we all know he has.
  • After struggling from deep earlier in the preseason, the Knicks shot well from three, putting up 40.7 percent shooting from three-point land against the Wizards, mostly in part to Hardaway Jr. and McDermott’s hot shooting. It’ll be interesting to see if New York’s shooting can be consistent this year with so many good shooters on the roster. Hopefully KP, Courtney Lee, THJ, and Doug will all provide consistent shooting throughout the season.

While the Knicks were unable to get a win all preseason, we learned some valuable information about the additions to the roster and how the coaching staff will use their players now that Phil Jackson is out of the picture.

Next time the Knicks will be playing meaningful basketball, and until then, The Knicks Wall has you covered for all things New York basketball.


Peter Saclarides, staff writer

 

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TKW’s resident youngin’. Steve Novak is my hero.

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