At this point in the season, the Knicks are beginning to give minutes to their young guys for evaluation, and what their potential could hold for the future of the franchise. For 2017 second-round pick Damyean Dotson, those minutes have been very few.
Dotson, a Houston product, has been on the bench the past two games with a right foot injury, and it very well may be the worst time for an ailment to keep him off the court. New York wants to see how their young prospects can perform under the big lights, and Dotson wants nothing more than to show the front office what he can do.
"Eventually I'll get my time on the court and I can show what I can do," Dotson told Newsday's Al Iannazzone.
However, it will be tough for Dotson to see significant time that players like C Luke Kornet are getting with a logjam present at his position. The 6-foot-6 prospect is a swingman that can play both shooting guard and small forward. However, with Tim Hardaway Jr., Courtney Lee, and Lance Thomas in the way, the three doesn't have any holes.
Also, with Trey Burke, Frank Ntilikina, and Emmanuel Mudiay at point guard, Hornacek has been pairing this group at the point and shooting guard slots.
So where does that leave Dotson? Well, his foot needs to heal first, and since the All-Star break, he has only averaged 8.5 minutes over 12 games.
"The whole year I've been back and forth, back and forth, nothing consistent," Dotson said. "I think I had a pretty good game in the G League the last game before [injuring] my foot. I feel like I was getting the hang of things, getting a rhythm. I'd come in, hit a couple of shots, get some assists, play pretty good.
"For me it's all about confidence and knowing things will get better if I keep working."
Before his injury, Dotson, who is known as a good perimeter shooting and on-ball defender, is averaging just 2.9 points in his limited time. He is also shooting 31.1 percent from beyond the arc.
But numbers don't seem to bother him at this stage in his early career. Experience and developing his game to fit the NBA is what is on his mind.
"I really didn't know what to expect," he said. "I just came in and tried to work as hard as I could. It's all about development. That's what they keep preaching, 'Development. Development. Just go down there and develop.' I think I learned a lot about myself this year."
With seven games remaining, Dotson's window is closing to showcase his skills this season. But, even if he doesn't get in enough, he said he will stay around the New York area this offseason, while also participating in the summer league to further his Knicks development.
"Just keep developing," he said. "Whatever I need to do, I know I have a few things I need to work on. If they want me here, I'll be here, I'll be around."