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With the dust having settled on the 2018-19 season, the draft having taken place and free-agency about to tip off Friday night, let’s take a look back at our season previews and whether each was a slam dunk, a mid-range jumper or an airball.
Today, the New York Knicks.
Season Outlook: Another year, another era tips off for the Knicks, as general manager Scott Perry sent coach Jeff Hornacek packing and hired David Fizdale, who suffered the same fate in Memphis, largely because he and Marc Gasol did not get along. With star Kristaps Porzingis’ return date from a torn ACL up in the air, Perry was able to add a couple intriguing players in the draft in the form of Kevin Knox out of Kentucky and Mitchell Robinson, who did not play a second of college basketball after initially enrolling at Western Kentucky. Both played very well for New York in the Las Vegas Summer League, the 18-year-old Knox showing off a versatile skillset and Robinson flashing as an athletic 7-footer. However, there isn’t much else to get pumped up about on the roster. The good news is, the Knicks are likely headed back to the lottery and will have in the neighborhood of $30 million to spend next summer when a star-studded free-agent class hits the market. For now, though, this season will be about how Porzingis’ health translates once he returns and watching the development of Knox and Robinson.
The Season: Well, Porzingis was traded to Dallas, Knox averaged 12.8 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1.1 assists, with a shooting line of 37./34.3/71.7 in 28.8 minutes in 75 games. Robinson played 20.6 minutes in 66 games, averaging 7.3 points, 6.4 boards and 2.4 blocks, shooting 69.4 percent from the field. The Knicks bottomed out, though, finish a league-worst 17-65. As if that we not bad enough, despite having the best odds to land the No. 1, aka Zion Williamson, along with the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Phoenix Suns, New York tumbled to No. 3 in the draft lottery. The Knicks’ consolation prize for not landing Williamson was one of his Duke teammates, R.J. Barrett.
Our Effort: Mid-range jumper, though better than that of the Knicks.