It’s unimaginable not to view dialogue of the Knicks’ choices for his or her first-round decide on this yr’s draft as a mirrored image of the disappointing first full season Dennis Smith Jr. has endured with the staff.
The Post’s Marc Berman reported final week the Knicks’ scouting workers has been instructed “the highest precedence” with their anticipated 2020 lottery decide is a scoring level guard.
Smith, acquired in final yr’s blockbuster commerce of Kristaps Porzingis to Dallas, has endured an injury-plagued and unproductive yr. The ninth-overall decide by the Mavericks in 2017 arrived with high hopes, however is averaging 5.2 factors and a pair of.eight assists over 15.5 minutes per look.
“I clearly need to win video games, simply proceed to enhance and grow to be a greater model of myself and proceed to be an amazing teammate,” Smith stated Thursday when requested concerning the Knicks’ closing 27 video games. “I received private objectives that I set in thoughts. Obviously I’m not gonna share them, however I’ve private objectives and I consider I can attain ’em with these final video games.”
Elfrid Payton has began essentially the most video games (27) and performed the most effective of the Knicks’ level guard trio (9.7 factors and 6.9 assists per sport), however he has simply $1 million assured on his $eight million deal for subsequent season.
Frank Ntilikina, chosen one decide forward of Smith by the Knicks in 2017, has made 25 begins. The 22-year-old Smith has began simply twice in 30 appearances.
“Things occur, it’s similar to life, there’s issues that occur, there’s ups and downs, however you gotta take all of it in stride,” Smith stated. “You can’t let it break you, for certain. The approach I take a look at it’s I got here into this league with a imaginative and prescient of who I’m gonna be and I do know what my objectives have been.
“I can’t let that be shaken by something that’s occurring. If that is what I gotta undergo to get to the place I’m going, I gotta cope with it.”
Payton (sore proper ankle) and Wayne Ellington (strained proper ankle) are questionable for Friday’s dwelling sport towards the Pacers.
Asked if both damage is taken into account severe, interim coach Mike Miller stated: “I don’t suppose so. Wayne sort of tweaked his [Wednesday]. Precautionary. And Elfrid was just a bit bit sore immediately. But I feel it’s simply ensuring that it doesn’t flip into something.”