Kevin Knox is still looking to get into the swing of things in his rookie season with the Knicks.
"It's been tough," he told Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News after Wednesday night's 117-109 win over the Celtics. "The in and out (of the lineup) and not playing as well as I'd like to. But like I said, I got to be strong mentally and make sure I got to keep playing hard, keep doing the dirty work, work on defense and get better at that. But it's been tough."
Knox has been taken out of the Knicks' starting lineup twice this year, missing seven games in between with a sprained ankle.
He put up a solid 11 points and nine rebounds off the bench in Boston. This week, David Fizdale said the 19-year-old's motor has been "up and down" to start the season, but the coach was pleased with his latest effort.
"I was proud of him," Fizdale said, per the Daily News. "He hadn't been playing great. And to come up here in Boston, against one of the best teams in the East, I thought he really answered the bell."
Through 12 games, Knox is averaging 8.5 points per game while shooting .343 from the field. Like the Knicks' other young players, the small forward is a project that the team is working to develop by giving him the right mindset.
Knox, the Knicks' ninth overall pick in this year's draft, said his parents are giving him the same message.
"They just tell me to take deep breaths, go out there and don't focus on anything else, just focus on playing hard, competing, getting loose balls, 50-50 balls, and show that you're out there competing and working hard," Knox said (Daily News). "Getting those loose balls. If you see a ball on the ground, dive on the ground and make sure you come up with it and show your teammates that they should respect you and see that you're working hard out there. That's what they tell me."