New York Knicks: How NY has transformed into the hottest team in the NBA

New York Knicks RJ Barrett and Julius Randle (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks RJ Barrett and Julius Randle (Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports) /
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New York Knicks
NBA New York Knicks Immanuel Quickley (Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports) /

How the New York Knicks have turned it around: Balanced roster

The Knicks have two stars who are responsible for a lot of their success, it is true. But they also have an incredibly balanced roster. Let’s do a quick run-through.

Immanuel Quickley: The 25th overall pick in this year’s draft and a steal at that slot. A lock to make an All-Rookie roster. Hits his threes and can be lethal in the pick-and-roll.

Reggie Bullock + Alec Burks: The two 3-point specialists on the roster, shooting 40.6 percent and 40.8 percent from 3, respectively. Absolutely crucial to the success of the Knicks and their stars who love to operate in the paint.

Mitchell Robinson: Tragically lost his season to a fractured foot. He is one of the two best defensive center prospects in the league (the other being Jarrett Allen). Can switch onto guards and patrol the paint.

Nerlens Noel: Has filled the void left by Robinson better than anyone expected. Tied for third in the league in blocks per game despite playing significantly fewer minutes than the players above him.

Taj Gibson: If Thibs is coaching a team, odds are Taj is there too. He is there strictly to enforce, grab rebounds, and play defense. He does them all effectively for the team.

There are some other contributors, but these are the guys I wanted to mention specifically. Younger guys like Frank Ntilikina and Obi Toppin have not gotten consistent minutes mainly because of their youth and deficiencies. They have shown promise however and could contribute to the Knicks either on the court or as trade pieces in the future.