New York Knicks: How Kevin Knox can take a step up this season

Kevin Knox, New York Knicks. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Kevin Knox, New York Knicks. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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New York Knicks
Kevin Knox, New York Knicks. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

Consistency is key

Although Knox did not have a consistent rookie season, the twenty-year-old Kentucky product is bound to have a much better year. In his first two months in the NBA, Knox averaged 8.2 points-per-game (PPG) and shot an abysmal 34 FG%, 37 3P%, and 58 FT%, respectively.

The rookie then bounced back in December, averaging 17.1 points (best), 6.0 rebounds (best), 1.5 assists, on 40.3 FG% (2nd best), 38.4 3P%, and 64 FT% in 34.9 minutes (best) per game across 14 appearances. His efforts earned the New York Knicks forward the NBA’s Rookie of the Month honors.

From January until the end of the season in April, Knox averaged 13.8 points, 5.0 boards, 1.3 assists per night. He put up those numbers while shooting 36.8 FG%, 33.2 3P%, 74.8 FT%. Knicks coach David Fizdale showed his confidence in Knox, playing him 31.1 minutes per game over forty-five appearances.

As the numbers show, Knox’s shooting averages fluctuated throughout the entire season as he maintained a shooting percentage over 40 in only December and March of last season. Additionally, Knox only managed to average more than 13 points a game once throughout the rest of the season.

If Knox is able to record more months like last December, he will continue being a top option in Fizdale’s rotation. There is no reason not to expect him to do just that.

On the defensive end, however, Knox has a lot of room for improvement. He needs to work on staying in front of who he’s defending and effectively trail them since he struggles with his lateral quickness.

At 6-9 and 215 pounds with a 6-11.5 wingspan, Knox is fully capable of being versatile on the defensive end. His size and position will be useful in the future as he guards against star small forwards.

If Knox wants to find himself more involved in crunch time during key defensive possessions, he must dedicate himself improving his performance on that end of the floor. The Knicks desperately need him to pick it up on the back end.