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3 Takeaways From New York Knicks Opening Night Against The Bucks

Derrick Williams (Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports)

Derrick Williams (Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports)


The 2014-2015 New York Knicks season began last night as expectations for the team varies throughout the NBA. Many feel that if the Knicks avoid the injury bug, they could compete for a playoff spot in the average to sub-par Eastern Conference. Others feel that the team hasn’t improved much since last year and they may be a little better than 17 wins…more like 25 wins this season.

Even though it’s only been one game, you can see a lot from the Knicks from last night’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks. For one thing it seems that the team is more comfortable within the Triangle Offense after one full season in the system. It also seems that this team as constructed is more willing to play defense and hustle around the court, especially a player like Kyle O’Quinn who brings that in every game he plays in. With that said, here are three things I have seen so far and I know it’s only one game but indulge me if you will.


  1. Carmelo Anthony Still Slows Down The Offense


This has been an issue throughout Anthony’s career. It seems that the ball movement just stops when he’s in the game. During the game against Milwaukee, the flow of the offense was smooth and crisp with the extra pass being made throughout the game. However when Carmelo was in the game, the extra passes stopped and you saw periods where players on offense was just standing around watching Anthony because they knew they probably would not be getting the ball back.

This is a problem that needs to be addressed. Is Carmelo Anthony passing the ball? Yes, he had five assists in the opener but it’s not enough. It’s not about assist numbers but instead it’s about Anthony making that pass that is the assist to the assist to a basket. It’s something I feel he wants to improve on but with a huge contract under his belt, he feels that he needs to do it all but in this case its okay to get some help and pass the ball.


  1. Kristaps Porzingis Is The Real Deal


Yes it’s been one game but Kristaps Porzingis looked good against the Milwaukee. He shot only 3-for-11 from the field but got to the foul line and showed some flashes of strength inside as he scored 16 points in his NBA debut. The knock on him coming out of the draft was whether he could last 82 games in the league and if he was physical enough to compete. Against the massive Greg Monroe he could not compete on night one but with some added weight and muscle, it’s not a stretch to think that Porzingis could be he next coming of a Dirk Nowitzki. I was impressed.


  1. The Knicks Bench Could Be One Of The Best In The NBA


One major issue the Knicks had last season was that their bench was terrible. And not enough bodies terrible but those players had no business being in the NBA terrible. Many of those players that played significant minutes during the lost 2014-2015 season are still on the team and gained a lot of experience with those minutes. Players like Langston Galloway and Lance Thomas scored in double digits against the Bucks and free agent pickups O’Quinn and Derrick Williams played big, especially Williams who finished with 24 points and 7 rebounds. The youth and energy coming from the Knicks bench is something to keep an eye on as the season progresses. With that said , the Knicks bench are not starters so if there are significant injuries to the starters, that could spell trouble but for now it looks like the off-season was good to Phil Jackson and Derek Fisher.

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Kahlil Thomas

Kahlil is the College Sports Editor for as well as a columnist, hosting the Bump 'N Run column once per week. He also co-hosts a weekly basketball podcast, The Box Out, every Thursday evening with fellow writer Jason Cordner.
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