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Kevin Knox

 (Russell Isabella)
(Russell Isabella)

The Knicks weren't able to land any high-profile free agents this past summer, which led to now ex-team president Steve Mills and GM Scott Perry signing a group of veterans to short, expendable deals. 

Now, with a new vision in the front office with Leon Rose the team president, those players -- and even some others -- might be on the chopping block. 

In this series, we'll look at whether or not the Knicks should let these players stay -- or let them walk. We'll focus this time on center Taj Gibson:

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
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SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley looks at the development of Knicks forward Kevin Knox and reveals what some scouts have said about his future.

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Dec 7, 2018; Scottsdale, AZ, USA; Spire Institute guard LaMelo Ball warms up prior to facing Bella Vista Prep at Chaparral High School. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Camporeale)
Dec 7, 2018; Scottsdale, AZ, USA; Spire Institute guard LaMelo Ball warms up prior to facing Bella Vista Prep at Chaparral High School. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports (Joe Camporeale)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...


We got a few questions about LaMelo Ball and the possibility of the Knicks moving up in the draft: 

@PrimeCarmelo: Do you think the Knicks trade up for Lamelo if they don't move up in the lottery?

@Jiggyx_1: How would the lottery results for this draft affect our motivation to trade up?? Is there a specific player they key in on?? How likely is that?

This shouldn't surprise anyone who has followed the 2020 draft class, but the Knicks have LaMelo Ball ranked as the top point guard on their draft board. One opposing scout said he assumed most teams have Ball at the top. But since @PrimeCarmelo asked specifically about LaMelo, it's worth pointing out that Knicks people think highly of the young guard. 

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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While the NBA is looking to finish its 2019-20 season somehow, the Knicks and new team president Leon Rose are already looking toward the NBA Draft and evaluating their current roster. And among that evaluation should be what to do with 2018 first-rounder Kevin Knox.

Knox had a slow start coming out of Kentucky in his rookie season, but many believed he'd make a jump forward in year two. But when that didn't happen after posting 6.4 points per game over 65 games, the question became whether or not the Knicks should pull the plug on Knox. 

So, with that over Knox' head, SNY's Ian Begley believes this is a make-or-break year for the 6-foot-7 forward if he wants to stay in New York.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Scott Thompson
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Chris Paul
Chris Paul

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

If you're looking ahead to free agency for the Knicks, the first question to ask is: Will New York trade for Chris Paul

As noted last month, some people with the Knicks believe Paul would provide strong leadership for their young players and help jump-start the winning culture that New York wants to establish under president Leon Rose

It's unclear, at this point, if the Knicks will aggressively pursue a Paul trade, or if Oklahoma City is willing to move him. 

Tags: Allonzo Trier, Damyean Dotson, Dennis Smith Jr., Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Scott Perry will serve as general manager under new Knick president Leon Rose, league sources confirm to SNY.

"Scott is a well-respected basketball executive who I have known for more than 20 years, and I look forward to continuing to work closely with him as we look to build a winning team in New York," Rose said in a statement on the news, which was first reported by Newsday.

Perry has a new one-year deal for 2020-21. He had previously been general manager under former team president Steve Mills.

Tags: Allonzo Trier, Bryan Mitchell, Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Knox, Kristaps Porzingis, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Feb 27, 2020; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Knicks guard Dennis Smith Jr. (5) dribbles the ball against the Philadelphia 76ers during the second quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)
Feb 27, 2020; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Knicks guard Dennis Smith Jr. (5) dribbles the ball against the Philadelphia 76ers during the second quarter at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports (Bill Streicher)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...


@SRF_NY: What has happened to Dennis Smith Jr.? Despite his efficiency stats, in his first year with the Mavs he was at least a serviceable starting point guard and definitely passed the eye test. Now it seems like he's on his way out of the league. What's with the regression?

Suggesting Smith Jr. is on his way out of the league is a little strong, @SRF_NY, but earlier this season, several teams had similar questions about Smith Jr.'s play. They wanted to know what was at the root of his struggles.

My best guess is that there were a few factors at play. First off, Smith Jr. suffered several injuries in 2019-20, including one in training camp. That hampered his play. He also lost his stepmother in late October. The death, as you'd imagine, had a tremendous impact on Smith Jr. off the court.  

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks president Leon Rose (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

About a week before the 2020 trade deadline, some with the Knicks organization were optimistic that they had the framework of a package in place that would land D'Angelo Russell from Golden State. 

Any momentum in the talks with Golden State stalled when then-president Steve Mills was removed from his position. 

Tags: Allonzo Trier, D'Angelo Russell, Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Knicks' Kevin Knox (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks' Kevin Knox (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Last season, David Fizdale introduced Kevin Knox to LeBron James after a Lakers-Knicks game at the Garden.

James and Knox spoke for several minutes in the hallway outside of the visitors' locker room at MSG. James' message that day has stayed with Knox as he navigates life in the NBA's biggest market.

"One of the biggest things that he said was really just staying locked in throughout the whole season, through ups and downs. Social media is going to try to bring you down. There's going to be times when they're going to hype you up. He was just telling me to stay level-headed," Knox said in a Q&A on Twitter for the league's "NBA Together" program during the coronavirus crisis. "Because there are times when he doesn't have great games. He was telling me that he's not really worried about what people are saying.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Ian Begley
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Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy and Tom Thibodeau (Treated Image by SNY)
Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy and Tom Thibodeau (Treated Image by SNY)

Here's our weekly Knicks mailbag with SNY's NBA Insider Ian Begley...


@Jdazz6: I would like to know if the Knicks do not retain Coach Miller, who's the most realistic replacement as coach? And of those options, who would be the best at developing these young players?

The most realistic replacement at coach is a tough one to answer. I'd think that the Knicks could get any of the following coaches if money isn't a mitigating factor: Tom Thibodeau, Kenny Atkinson, Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy, Mike Woodson. Usually, money isn't a holdup when the Knicks are pursuing a coach. Steve Kerr is one recent exception to that rule.

Also, I see John Calipari as a less realistic option because of the money it would likely take to lure him from Kentucky. He's also publicly said he's not interested in the job. But because of his relationship with Knicks president Leon Rose, I'm not taking him off of my list of candidates until Rose hires someone else.

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Knicks president Leon Rose, interim head coach Mike Miller and several players offered a thank you to healthcare workers battling the coronavirus crisis in a video posted Thursday. 


Knicks' Kevin Knox (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks' Kevin Knox (Treated Image by SNY)

Though they may try to skip steps to playoff contention, the New York Knicks are in the developmental stage. One of the key players in New York's rebuild is forward Kevin Knox

In his second year in the league, Knox's growth and development as a player has stalled. With one more season before he's up for a rookie extension and two more seasons before he would become a free agent, it's important for the Knicks to crystallize what Knox's role and future would be in New York. 

It feels like a decade ago that Knox was being christened New York's latest savior after a splashy Summer League showing in 2018. While he piled up the points, Knox shot 35.1 percent from the field. That would be a hint at what Knox would really contribute in the NBA. The 6-foot-9 forward has yet to shoot at least 40 percent from the field in either of his two pro seasons in the NBA.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
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Feb 12, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks small forward Kevin Knox II (20) drives to the basket against Washington Wizards small forward Davis Bertans (42) during the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Feb 12, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks small forward Kevin Knox II (20) drives to the basket against Washington Wizards small forward Davis Bertans (42) during the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

John Calipari, who coached Kevin Knox during his time at Kentucky, spoke at length about the Knicks' second-year pro on Tuesday about his adjustment to the NBA, his work ethic, and more.

Calipari, who announced Tuesday that, through The Calipari Foundation, he would be donating groceries to 400 families during the coronavirus pandemic, also implored the Knicks to not give up on Knox too soon.

On the adjustment period for Knox given his age

"He was so young. Some guys are even younger than their chronological age, which is young. And guess what? He's one of those. He was the youngest player in that draft. And he was learning about himself. And i come back to: you've got to conquer yourself before you can conquer anybody else. Being in that league, I've never heard him complain one time. How about that? That he's accepting, 'I'm responsible for me. I am what my stats say I am. I'm responsible. And I've got a ways to go.'"

Tags: Kevin Knox, Danny Abriano
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Frank Ntilikina (Geoff Burke)
Frank Ntilikina (Geoff Burke)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Mike Miller sees a subtle difference lately in Frank Ntilikina's approach: 

"Before, when he had a defender in front of him, he made the pass to Mitchell [Robinson] or Bobby [Portis] or whoever. And now he's seeing open lanes to the basket, and he's going," Miller said Tuesday. 

That change is significant for Ntilikina, who scouts had seen as too passive on offense in his first two seasons. 

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Mar 8, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Elfrid Payton (6) dribbles the ball against the Detroit Pistons during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Mar 8, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Elfrid Payton (6) dribbles the ball against the Detroit Pistons during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Some notes from the Knicks' win over the Pistons...


Kevin Knox had two blocks against Detroit, tangible evidence of what Mike Miller has been talking about for weeks: the young Knick is improving on the defensive end.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Dec 13, 2019; Sacramento, CA, USA; New York Knicks forward RJ Barrett (9) celebrates during the fourth quarter against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports (Sergio Estrada)
Dec 13, 2019; Sacramento, CA, USA; New York Knicks forward RJ Barrett (9) celebrates during the fourth quarter against the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports (Sergio Estrada)

The Knicks are headed for another season out of the playoff picture and another year in the lottery. The team has a sizable collection of veterans, however, the franchise's focus should center on their young core of recent draft picks.

The team is in for another massive rebuild, and there is a lot to look at for new president of basketball operations Leon Rose. Though much is made of who the Knicks can pursue in free agency or the draft, the focus right now should be the evaluation of New York's prospects already on the team.

There is talent, but there are major questions. Is Kevin Knox a lost cause? Is Damyean Dotson a keeper? Can you build around RJ Barrett? Here's a look at the Knicks' top prospects based on their value...

Tags: Allonzo Trier, Damyean Dotson, Dennis Smith Jr., Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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Knicks' Kevin Knox (Treated Image by SNY)
Knicks' Kevin Knox (Treated Image by SNY)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

A few weeks into Kevin Knox's rookie season, his college coach, John Calipari, said that NBA teams would have to be patient with the 6-9 forward. 

"I told the Knicks and everybody recruiting (Knox) -- they're 19, 18, 20, not 25 years old. But what you have is a 6-9, 6-10 player who's multi-dimensional, who can score and is just going to get better and better when he matures and physically fills out," Calipari said. 

Tags: Kevin Knox, Ian Begley
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Feb 29, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (23) shoots the ball as Chicago Bulls center Wendell Carter Jr. (34) defends during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Feb 29, 2020; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (23) shoots the ball as Chicago Bulls center Wendell Carter Jr. (34) defends during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

As the Knicks host the Utah Jazz at 7:30 p.m. from Madison Square Garden looking for a three-game winning streak, New York does so with one key player unavailable.

Prior to tip-off, the Knicks announced that center Mitchell Robinson was out with a sore hamstring.

Kevin Knox (leg contusion) is available to play, the Knicks announced. Interim head coach Mike Miller added that wing Reggie Bullock (illness) is also available.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
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Mitchell Robinson dunks during Knicks game
Mitchell Robinson dunks during Knicks game

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Knicks big man Mitchell Robinson turned in another strong performance on Monday, dropping 12 points on 5-of-8 shooting and 13 rebounds (five offensive) in New York's win over Houston. 

Tyson Chandler, a former Knick and current Rockets vet, was impressed by what he saw. 

"I love his game. Very talented young player. He's very raw. But his athletic ability and what he can turn into and things that he can accomplish, I feel like are limitless," Chandler said. "I don't think he even knows how talented he is yet."

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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On his first day as Knicks president, Leon Rose spent some time before the game speaking to players and coaches. 

Though the team wanted to keep specific details of the conversation in-house, Kevin Knox shed some light on Rose's message to the team. 

"He's just here to make us better," Knox said. "He's here to make the team better. He knows we've been through a lot of up and down this year, coaching changes, president changes, a lot of family tradgedies, but he really wants to stick with us. He's going to make sure that we get better, the team gets better."
 

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The Knicks entered Saturday's game against the Bulls with some sour news, as guards Dennis Smith Jr. and Reggie Bullock were going to be unable to suit up and play.

Additionally, Frank Ntilinkina played despite being listed on the injury report earlier in the day with a sore groin.

But with their guards core beaten down a bit heading into what felt like a must win game for the Knicks, the bigs, including Mitchell Robinson and Julius Randle, came to play, helping New York secure a 125-115 win over Chicago.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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Feb 26, 2020; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) drives in to the basket during the first half against the Charlotte Hornets at the Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 26, 2020; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) drives in to the basket during the first half against the Charlotte Hornets at the Spectrum Center. Mandatory Credit: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Knox Sr. is biased, but he firmly believes his son -- second-year Knicks forward Kevin Knox -- is on the verge of something great.

In an interview Friday with Marc Berman of the New York Post, Knox Sr. opened up on Knox's progression through nearly two seasons.

A former professional athlete himself in the NFL during the 1994 campaign as a wide receiver for the Buffalo Bills out of Florida State (1990-93), Knox Sr. told Berman that he sees his son blooming like a rose after 2019-20 is complete.

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Dec 28, 2019; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) prepares to shoot as Washington Wizards center Anzejs Pasecniks (18) defends during the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)
Dec 28, 2019; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) prepares to shoot as Washington Wizards center Anzejs Pasecniks (18) defends during the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)

Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Kevin Knox says he isn't worried about his struggles on offense. He also thinks, despite the subpar offensive numbers, he's a much better player this season than he was last year.

"I definitely think I've gotten a lot better. I go out there (and) really just try to get better defensively. That's something I really tried to take on this summer, just have a better defensive approach," Knox said Wednesday before the Knicks' loss to Philly. "So that's kind of been my mindset this whole season.

"I'm not really worried about the offense, I know that's going to come, the shot's going to fall. But I really just want to lock in defensively, lock in on making those extra plays."

Tags: Kevin Knox, Ian Begley
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Knicks forward Kevin Knox hasn't had an ideal second season with the team, as he's averaging just 6.8 points and 2.9 rebounds per game.

The No. 9 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft has focused on getting better on both sides of the ball, and taking advantage of his opportunities.

"Just going out there, just trying to play aggressive on both sides of the basketball floor," Knox said. "Really just going out there and trying to compete, and opportunities that I have to score out there. Just trying to leave it all on the floor. I'm not going to do everything right, not every player does everything right, but just trying to give it all I got with the most of the opportunities I get."

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All season long for the Knicks, there have been questions about the team's focus on developing young players versus playing more of their veteran signings to try to win games.

Those questions seemed to reach a fever pitch once the team fired head coach David Fizdale and later parted ways with team president Steve Mills.

On Wednesday night, the Knicks dropped their second straight game, falling to 17-38 on the year, and interim head coach Mike Miller was once again asked about the team's development of the roster's young players.

Tags: Damyean Dotson, Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox
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With everything the Knicks have gone through in the past few months, from missing out on the superstar free agents in the summer, to David Fizdale's dismissal, to Scott Perry's ousting as team president, somehow the playoffs aren't completely out of the picture just yet.

Thanks in part to the Knicks' recent four-game winning streak - one that came to a heartbreaking end on Sunday in Atlanta - New York is just six games back of the Orlando Magic for the eighth seed in the East.

The bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff picture may not be anything to write home about, and the Knicks are still 20 games under .500, but they've already equaled last season's win total, and interim head coach Mike Miller believes they're heading in the right direction.

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As rumors swirl on who the next Knicks head coach will be after this season, one name that's come up is Kentucky head coach John Calipari.

However, his former player and current Knicks forward Kevin Knox believes that Calipari will stay in Kentucky.

"When Cal says he's not going to do something, he's pretty solid that he's not going to do it," Knox said Tuesday at Knicks practice. "...He runs that state, the fans love him there. He's got the basketball program on lock there."

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Jan 30, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier (3) dribbles past Washington Wizards guard Ish Smith (14) during the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)
Jan 30, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Terry Rozier (3) dribbles past Washington Wizards guard Ish Smith (14) during the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)

The Knicks don't have strong interest at the moment in trading for Terry Rozier, according to SNY's Ian Begley.

Begley reported on Monday that the Knicks and Hornets had discussed a deal involving Julius RandleTerry RozierMalik Monk and Dennis Smith Jr. were among the names that came up in discussions between the two franchises, per SNY sources.

Rozier, who was a free agent target for the Knicks this past summer, ultimately signed a three-year, $58 million deal with Charlotte.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Danny Abriano
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Nov 24, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) handles the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Nov 24, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) handles the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

With the Knicks interested in trading for Warriors PG D'Angelo Russell, they are reportedly open to including Kevin Knox in a potential deal.

"One player I am told they have included -- which is interesting -- is Kevin Knox, Shams Charania of The Athletic said Tuesday on the HoopsHype podcast with Alex Kennedy when talking about the Knicks' discussions with th e Warriors.

Charania added that he believes the Warriors' "preference is actually to keep" Russell.

The 20-year-old Knox, who was the No. 9 overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, has not progressed as quickly as the Knicks would have hoped. He is averaging just 7.1 points and 2.7 rebounds per game this season while playing 18.6 minutes per game -- a slice of roughly 10 minutes per game from what he averaged during his rookie season.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Danny Abriano
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

A few notes in the aftermath of the Knicks' loss to the Lakers:

NYK looking for more aggressive Knox:

Before Wednesday's game, Mike Miller laid out what the organization is looking for from second-year wing Kevin Knox:

"Our key points there are just his overall aggressiveness on everything... He's rebounding better. That was an area that we wanted to see (from) him and he has increased that. And you can see our team rebounding has gotten better and he's part of that equation. Being more aggressive where he's driving the ball, where he's cutting, where he's running in transition, where he's having opportunities to get fouled. I think we're seeing those things. And just the consistency of doing all that. And then on the defensive side having a real presence on the ball and using physicality, using his length, getting three to five deflections a game, that type of activity defensively."

Tags: Damyean Dotson, Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Ian Begley
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

There are a couple of things worth keeping in mind amid another lost season at Madison Square Garden: 

1. How the young Knicks develop over the final 39 games

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Nov 23, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Marcus Morris Sr. (13) shoots the ball during the first quarter against the San Antonio Spurs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Nov 23, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Marcus Morris Sr. (13) shoots the ball during the first quarter against the San Antonio Spurs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

After recently passing the halfway point of the 2019-20 season, the New York Knicks find themselves tied for the third worst record (12-32) in the NBA after 44 games. The franchise is headed for their seventh consecutive losing season and sixth consecutive season with at least 50 losses.

After losing out on star free agents Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving last summer, the Knicks front office attempted to save face by adding mid-tier free agents such as Julius Randle, Marcus Morris, and Bobby Portis. The result of mixing numerous veterans to a young core has not worked as planned. The Knicks have a multitude of questions to ask as they play out the second half of another lost season. Here are the five most important.

Is Marcus Morris a part of the team's future?

Two seasons ago, the Memphis Grizzlies signed swingman Tyreke Evans to a one-year, $3.3 million deal. Coming off of multiple injuries, Evans' deal was a bargain and the former Rookie of the Year excelled immediately. Though Memphis struggled as a team, Evans posted 19.9 points along with a career-high 39.9 percent from three. 

Tags: Allonzo Trier, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
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Jan 7, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) dribbles the ball as New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) defends in the second half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)
Jan 7, 2020; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) dribbles the ball as New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) defends in the second half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports (Kirby Lee)

On a three-game losing streak as they wrap up their road trip with Wednesday's 9 p.m. ET game against the Utah Jazz, the Knicks are limping to the finish line.

New York announced a handful of injuries, starting with forward Kevin Knox (sprained right ankle) and center Mitchell Robinson (sprained left big toe), who are both probable.

Rounding out the injury report, point guard Dennis Smith Jr. (strained left oblique) is questionable while small forward Marcus Morris (sore neck) is doubtful. Power forward Julius Randle, meanwhile, is out due to personal reasons.

Tags: Dennis Smith Jr., Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

In addition to Dennis Smith Jr. and Marcus Morris, some teams have interest in trading for Knicks forward Bobby Portis, per sources familiar with the matter. 

Portis signed a two-year $31 million deal with the Knicks over the summer, but the second year is a team option. So a contending team looking for front-line depth could view Portis as, essentially, an expiring contract. 

The 24-year-old enters Tuesday's game against the Lakers 10.1 points and 5.7 rebounds in 21 minutes per game for the Knicks. Portis is shooting 44 percent from the field (38 percent from beyond the arc). With the Knicks at 10-26 and uncertainty surrounding the future of the front office, it's unclear if the club will look to players like Portis for future assets or seek players who can help this year's team. 

Tags: Kevin Knox, Ian Begley
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

Mark Edwards is a life-long Knicks fan. So he knows how desperate the fanbase is for a winner. 

Edwards is also a long-time basketball trainer. In his 26-year career, Edwards has trained dozens of pros, including Terrence Ross and Mike Scott, as well as hundreds of college players. 

This summer, he worked with Knicks' second-year wing Kevin Knox, and Edwards has a message for Knicks fans keeping an eye on Knox: be patient. 

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, RJ Barrett, Ian Begley
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Dec 28, 2019; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) shoots over Washington Wizards center Ian Mahinmi (28) during the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)
Dec 28, 2019; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; New York Knicks forward Julius Randle (30) shoots over Washington Wizards center Ian Mahinmi (28) during the second quarter at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Mills)

The Knicks turned the ball over 21 times but still found a way to beat the Wizards 107-100 on Saturday night. >> Box Score

Five things to know from Saturday's game

1) The Knicks came out of the opening gates playing very sloppy basketball, turning the ball over four times in the first two minutes of the game. But after Washington jumped out to a five-point lead, the Knicks began to find their groove. Julius Randle led the way as the Knicks went on a 17-0 run during the late stages of the first quarter, pushing their lead to 33- 23 after one. The Knicks fell back into their bad ways in the second, though, and a 17-3 Wizards' run put Washington back on top. But a couple of threes from Kevin Knox and RJ Barrett gave the Knicks a 59-58 lead at the break.

In the second half, the Knicks appeared to right the ship, with Randle continuing to lead the way. Despite a 7-0 Wizards run to end the quarter, the Knicks entered the fourth with an 86-78 lead. Turnovers continued to plague the Knicks in the fourth, allowing the Wizards to regain the lead 90-89 with under nine minutes to play. The teams went back and forth during the home stretch, but Randle made sure the Knicks wouldn't let this one slip away, as the Knicks held on for the win.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Tim Hardaway Jr.
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For the second straight night, the Knicks never led during Saturday's 123-102 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks. >> Box Score

Five things to know from Saturday's game

1) Similar to Friday night, the Knicks came out of the gates very slowly. Milwaukee jumped out to a 17-4 lead in the first three minutes of the game, and they were on fire from beyond the arc, eventually sinking their first six three-point attempts. But to the Knicks' credit, they didn't fold completely, fighting their way back into the game. Still, the Bucks were up by 14 points at the half.

In the second half, things started to fall apart. Thanks in part to hot three-point shooting and Giannis Antetokounmpo taking over, the Knicks found themselves down by 23 midway through the third. All five Bucks' starters scored in double-digits without playing many minutes in the fourth, with Khris Middleton leading the way at 23 points.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

The Knicks put together not just their best game this season, but one of their best performances in recent memory, in what was a full-team effort during their 143-120 win over the Hawks on Tuesday night.

Six Knicks scored in double figures Tuesday, and every Knick that touched the floor managed to score, as they showed what this team could look like if they put together united efforts like this one on a consistent basis.

"A hundred percent," Dennis Smith Jr. said after the game when asked if the vibe of the team was to go have fun out there on the floor Tuesday night. "We put up 140 and it was like spread across, you know everybody got touches and everybody got shots so we want to try and put out that effort every night."

Tags: Dennis Smith Jr., Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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Th Knicks (7-21) came to play right out of the gate after returning from their west coast trip, as they absolutely dismantled the Hawks (6-22) 143-120 in what was Vince Carter's final game at Madison Square Garden >> Box Score

Five things to know from Tuesday's game

1) The Knicks were happy to return to the Garden on Tuesday night and they showed it, scoring a season-high 41 points in the first quarter, by far their best 12 minutes of the year that included a 13-0 run to end the quarter.

New York continued its dominance into the second and third quarters, extending that run to 21-0 and scoring 77 points in the first half alone. At 81-53 in the third, the Knicks took their largest lead in a game this season and extended it to 84-53 to take a 31-point lead at a point.

Tags: Dennis Smith Jr., Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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Ian Begley, SNY.tv Twitter | 

The Knicks have parted ways with head coach David Fizdale. Now, the focus turns to Knicks president Steve Mills

Mills and Knicks general manager Scott Perry hired Fizdale after an extensive coaching search in 2018. 

The plan then was for Mills, Perry and Fizdale to build a winning culture in New York by developing young players and attracting stars. 

Tags: Kevin Knox, Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, Ian Begley
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Dec 1, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks head coach David Fizdale reacts after a turnover against the Boston Celtics during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Dec 1, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks head coach David Fizdale reacts after a turnover against the Boston Celtics during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

We are at about the quarter-way point of the NBA season and the Knicks find themselves with the second worst record in the league and at the bottom of the Eastern Conference.

At 4-17, the Knicks have fallen to new lows and are on pace to break the record they tied last season for the worst season in team history. 

Head coach David Fizdale has been in an extremely hot seat ever since Knicks president Steve Mills and GM Scott Perry held a rare press conference after the team started the season 2-8. 

Since then, the Knicks have gone 2-9.

Tags: Dennis Smith Jr., Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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Nov 24, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) handles the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Nov 24, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Kevin Knox II (20) handles the ball against the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Second-year forward Kevin Knox will start for the Knicks on Sunday against the Celtics with Marcus Morris out, the team announced.

Knox was a DNP-CD on Friday night in the team's loss to the 76ers, and has seen more than 12 minutes in a game just once over the past five games.

Knicks head coach David Fizdale has elected to play veterans like Morris over Knox so far this season. Before Friday's game, Fizdale spoke about Knox's playing time.

Tags: Kevin Knox
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Nov 10, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Marcus Morris Sr (13) drives past Cleveland Cavaliers forward Cedi Osman (16) in the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports (Wendell Cruz)
Nov 10, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks forward Marcus Morris Sr (13) drives past Cleveland Cavaliers forward Cedi Osman (16) in the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports (Wendell Cruz)

The Knicks will look to break out of their current five-game losing streak when they host the the Boston Celtics on Sunday, but they may without their leading scorer.

Following the team's practice on Saturday, the team announced that forward Marcus Morris is questionable to play on Sunday due to cervical spasms.

The free agent pickup has played in every game this season with the Knicks, and he's taken on the role as the team's leading scorer during his first season in New York. He's averaged 18.7 points this season, easily the highest total of his NBA career. He's also scored 20 points or more in 11 of the Knicks' 19 games. 

Tags: Kevin Knox
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Nov 24, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks head coach David Fizdale watches play against the Brooklyn Nets during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Nov 24, 2019; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks head coach David Fizdale watches play against the Brooklyn Nets during the second half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

The Knicks lost their first matchup of the season with the 76ers 109-104 on Nov. 20, as the Knicks were up 17 points in the third quarter before the Sixers went on a run in the fourth to win the game.

Sixers star Ben Simmons had 18 points, 13 assists and 7 rebounds in the win, including the first three-pointer of his NBA career. Before Friday's game between the two team, Knicks head coach David Fizdale spoke about how his team will try to defend Simmons.

"Unless you got some kind of robot that I don't know about, I'm trying everybody on him," Fizdale said. "The kid can flat out play basketball. He understand the game, he has an incredible I.Q. His motor is second to none. He reminds me of this guy I coached in Miami for a little bit, with that size and that speed. And the ability to see the floor and make other people better."

Tags: Kevin Knox
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RJ Barrett (Bill Streicher)
RJ Barrett (Bill Streicher)

The Toronto homecoming for Knicks rookie RJ Barrett may not be too joyous, as the team announced he is dealing with an illness and is currently questionable to play. 

It would be a shame if Barrett couldn't play in his first game in his home country, especially considering the Raptors are reportedly planning a tribute for the 19-year-old, per The Post's Marc Berman. Barrett has played for Team Canada in the past, while his father, Rowan Barrett, is the GM for the Canadian national team. 

Barrett actually sat out of his first game on Sunday against the Nets with an illness, but it was only as a precaution. If Barrett does have to sit out again, it wouldn't just hurt the Raptors' plans for him, but would hurt the Knicks' production as well.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, RJ Barrett
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 (Vincent Carchietta)
(Vincent Carchietta)

The Knicks will be without rookie guard RJ Barrett on Sunday night against the Nets, as he sits out with an illness.

Kevin Knox will replace Barrett in the starting lineup as the Knicks try to win the second installment of the "Battle of the Boroughs" this season.

Considering Barrett put up 16 points, three rebounds, three assists and a career-high six steals against the Nets in their first meeting, the Knicks will sure feel his absence.

Tags: Kevin Knox, RJ Barrett
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Knicks second-year player Kevin Knox saw just 10 minutes of action on Wednesday night in the team's 109-104 loss to the 76ers, as head coach David Fizdale mentioned that the No. 9 pick in the 2018 NBA Draft needs to put the work in on defense.

"I wouldn't call it disappointment at all, but I am definitely riding Kevin, to challenge him to go to another level, especially defensively," Fizdale said. "I think offensively he's starting to figure some things out. His shooting percentage is up, finishing around the rim is much better, he's seeing the floor better. But now I want him to take a big step, a big jump forward defensively. So that's why I'm really being hard on him right now."

Knox scored three points on just one three point shot attempt, while grabbing two rebounds and two assists in his limited action against Philadelphia. The forward from the University of Kentucky is averaging only 8.7 points per game in 21.3 minutes of action this season, but like Fizdale said, his shooting percentages are up -- shooting 40 percent from three in 2019 compared to 35 percent in 2018.

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Since 2014, the New York Knicks have been in search of a center. Since Tyson Chandler manned the position for years, the team has struggled to find a quality starter at center and it-along with many other problems-has greatly affected New York in the win column. 

After an attempt to sign superstars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving went awry, the Knicks ended up adding several veteran free agents who have spent time at the center position, including Julius Randle, Taj Gibson and Bobby Portis in free agency. The Knicks invested $57.8 million this year alone in those players and forward Marcus Morris. 

These decisions immediately received backlash for creating a lack of positional balance on the roster. As the Knicks look to right the ship after a 3-9 start, the crowded center position comes with many questions and very few solutions.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson
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The Knicks earned their third win of the season on Thursday night, beating the Mavs 106-103, as two of their wins have come against Dallas.

Head coach David Fizdale talked about the team's struggles at home earlier this week, and also mentioned what went wrong after beating the Mavs on Nov. 11.

"I don't think it was complacency. I really don't," Fizdale said on Friday. "I really felt like this team is just trying to do so well for the city. I really do. Their intentions are right. They're trying to carry the weight of the city on their shoulders. I just told them you can't do that. I said it's an impossible task. You've got to focus on who's around you in the locker room and put forth effort for the people in the locker room and the city will appreciate that kind of effort. So hopefully we learned that lesson from last night."

Tags: Dennis Smith Jr., Frank Ntilikina, Kevin Knox, Kristaps Porzingis, Mitchell Robinson, RJ Barrett
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Steve Mills/Scott Perry/David Fizdale (Brad Penner)
Steve Mills/Scott Perry/David Fizdale (Brad Penner)

Amidst the wreckage of their disastrous start to the season, Knicks president Steve Mills is setting up head coach David Fizdale to be the "fall guy," a league source told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski and Malika Andrews.

According to Wojnarowski and Andrews, Mills has started to lay the "internal groundwork" for the potential firing of Fizdale.

Questions about Fizdale's job status grew louder after Mills and GM Scott Perry held a postgame press conference at Madison Square Garden following the Knicks' blowout loss to the Cavaliers on Sunday -- an occurrence SNY's Ian Begley noted was extremely rare.

Tags: Kevin Knox, Mitchell Robinson, Danny Abriano
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