Out of the 26 players who suited up for the Westchester Knicks, nine didn’t finish the season with the team. How did those players look during the NBAGL season?
The Westchester Knicks roster saw tons of change throughout the 2016-17 season. While 13 players finished the season with the team, only eight suited up for the team’s season finale against the Long Island Nets.
Jordon Crawford started his career in Westchester after getting drafted in the fifth round of the 2015 NBA G League Draft and he played a significant role for the Knicks in his first season. After being a defensive spark off the bench and averaging 8.5 points per game on 43.6 percent shooting from the field in 47 games (playoff games not included), Crawford returned to Westchester the following season.
The biggest improvement Crawford made was with his 3-point game. After connecting on 29.6 percent of his shots during the 2015-16 season, the Bowling Green product took a leap forward in that area last season. In 31 games with the Knicks, Crawford shot 42.2 percent from deep— a 12.6 percent increase.
While Crawford said he doesn’t take many three’s, he said he needed to shoot it at an efficient rate, which is what he did with Westchester last season.
“I think at my size, any open shot that I get, I have to make to succeed at this level,” Jordon Crawford said in December of 2016. “I don’t get too many of them. So when I do, I got to shoot at a high-efficiency. That was a priority this year. And I’m still working. I’m still trying to put extra work in and try to raise the bar.”
After playing in 80 games (playoff games included) over the course of his year and half with the Dub Knicks, Crawford was traded to the Canton Charge on Feb.11, 2017. After receiving the news on the trade, Crawford said he felt surprised, but excited.
“I think the biggest thing was surprised, but excited because this is my home [Westchester, NY],” Jordon Crawford said in his return to Westchester. “I had a great time here. It’s been wonderful. But at the same time, I knew I was getting closer to my family being back in Ohio, so I get to see my daughter a lot more often. I was losing something, but I was gaining something.”
In 31 games with Westchester, Crawford averaged 11.0 points and 2.8 assists on 44.0 percent shooting from the field and 42.2 percent from beyond the arc in 23.5 minutes per game. Following his stint in Westchester, he played in 16 games (one playoff game included) for the Canton Charge.
A day before the Westchester Knicks took on the Raptors 905 on Dec. 22, 2016, the team completed a three-team trade with the Santa Cruz Warriors and Texas Legends. In the deal, the Knicks acquired Courtney Fells from Santa Cruz, along with the returning rights of Justin Martin from the Texas Legends. Fells recorded five points, three steals, and two assists in 25 minutes off the bench in his debut against the Raptors 905.
In his third game with the team, Fells was thrust into the starting line-up. The North Carolina State product was effective all-around in the team’s game against the Long Island Nets. He finished the game with 21 points, six rebounds, five assists, and two steals on 8-of-14 from the field and 3-of-8 from deep.
Courtney Fells’ best stretch of the season came around the NBA G League Showcase. With the biggest event of the season and all eyes focusing on the event, it was a perfect time for Fells to shine.
He scored in double figures against Maine Red Claws, Fort Wayne Mad Ants, and Delaware 87ers while shooting 52.6 percent (10/19) from deep in the games leading up to the NBA G League Showcase. Fells scored 22 points in a win over the Erie BayHawks and almost notched a triple-double (23 points, nine rebounds and eight assists) against the Canton Charge.
In 30 games with Westchester, Fells averaged 12.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists, and 1.8 steals on 43.9 percent shooting from the field in 30.8 minutes per game. For the season, with Westchester and the Texas Legends, Fells was No. 10 (tied with Chris Evans) in the NBA G League in steals per game (1.9).
On Nov. 30, 2017, the Westchester Knicks announced the team acquired Mike Davis from the available player pool. On Dec. 10, he recorded three rebounds in 12 minutes off the bench in his debut against the Oklahoma City Blue.
During the NBA G League Showcase, the Illinois product recorded back-to-back double-digit performances against the Erie BayHawks and Canton Charge.
In 24 games with Westchester, Davis averaged 4.1 points and 2.9 rebounds on 57.1 percent shooting from the field in 13.0 minutes per game. With a minimum of 20 games played, he led Westchester in field-goal percentage.
Robert Vaden was originally acquired on Jan. 20, 2015 in a trade with the Northern Arizona Suns (then Bakersfield Jam) in exchange for the returning player rights to Josh Owen. Vaden returned to the team as a returning player for the 2016-17 season.
The University of Alabama at Birmingham product played in the team’s season opener against the Delaware 87ers while recording five points and five rebounds in 29 minutes of action. His most efficient shooting game was against the Erie BayHawks on the road.
Despite not taking many shots, Vaden was efficient that game. He totaled 11 points and two rebounds on an efficient 4-of-5 from the field and a perfect 3-of-3 from beyond the arc.
In 12 games with Westchester, Vaden averaged 6.0 points on 44.1 percent shooting from the field in 18.1 minutes per game. After playing 12 games with the Knicks, he was acquired by the Erie BayHawks on Jan. 23, 2017.
On Jan. 18, 2016, the Westchester Knicks acquired Devondrick Walker from the available player pool. Walker had several impressive performances during the 2015-16 season, which included a 15 point outing against the Sioux Falls Skyforce. In that game, the Texas A&M Commerce product shot well from the floor and was getting to the line. Walker returned to the team the following season.
Devondrick Walker had an impressive outing in the team’s season opener on the road against the Delaware 87ers. He shot the ball well from deep and even threw down a monstrous dunk off a back door pass from Damien Inglis.
In his short tenure with the Dub Knicks, he scored in double figures five times, including the season opener against the 87ers. In his final game against the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, Walker totaled 10 points in 24 minutes.
In 10 games with Westchester, Walker averaged 10.1 points on 44.7 percent shooting from the field in 20.6 minutes per game. On Dec. 14, 2016, the Knicks traded Devondrick Walker to the Delaware 87ers.
In his tenure in Delaware, he competed in the NBA G League 3-Point contest. Walker totaled 18 points in first round of the 3-point contest and advanced to the final round. He went onto score 21 points in the finals, but Scott Word edged Walker by totaling 23 points and taking the award to Santa Cruz. On Apr. 20, Walker was awarded the NBA G League Most Improved Player award.
After missing the first three games of the season, Anthony Kent made his debut against the Canton Charge where he recorded five points and one rebound in 11 minutes off the bench. Three games later, Kent totaled nine points and four rebounds against the Delaware 87ers.
In four games with Westchester, Kent average 3.8 points on 71.4 percent shooting from the field in 11.9 minutes per game. In March of 2017, he joined Panteras de Miranda of the Venezuelan Professional Basketball League.
On Nov. 18, 2016, the Westchester Knicks signed Quincy Douby. The Rutgers product made his debut two days later and recorded six points, two assists and two steals against the Canton Charge.
In two games with Westchester, Douby averaged 4.5 points and 1.5 steals in 17.0 minutes per game. In January of 2017, he played with Afyonkarahisar Belediye of Turkey’s TBL.
After being selected in the third round of the 2016 NBA G League Draft, Lasan Kromah was one of two (Max Hooper) players to be selected in the 2016 NBAGL Draft to play in the season opener for Westchester.
In the team’s game against the Delaware 87ers, the Connecticut product did a little bit of everything and the Knicks benefited from his contribution. In 24 minutes off the bench, Kromah finished with 16 points, four rebounds, two assists, and two steals on 4-of-7 shooting from the field.
In two games with Westchester, Kromah averaged 8.0 points and 2.5 rebounds on 50.0 percent shooting from the field in 14.0 minutes per game. Eight days after being waived by the Knicks, he suited up for ASP Promitheas Patras in Greece.
On Dec. 16, 2016, the Westchester Knicks acquired Gary Neal from the available player pool. Neal only played in one game for Westchester and totaled four points in 14 minutes against the Long Island Nets.
On Jan. 2, 2017, the Knicks traded Neal to the Texas Legends in exchange for a third round pick in the 2017 NBA G League Draft via the Sioux Falls Skyforce. The NBA veteran spent two weeks with the Legends before receiving a 10-day contract with the Atlanta Hawks. After his 10-day contract expired, Texas traded Gary Neal to the Reno Bighorns.
Each of the nine players contributed to the Westchester Knicks in their own way during the 2016-17 season. Whether it was Jordon Crawford’s presence in Westchester, Courtney Fells’ near triple-double at the NBA G League Showcase or Devondrick Walker’s impressive dunk against the Delaware 87ers, the nine players provided many significant moments during the season.
While those players may not have finished with the season, their contributions didn’t go unnoticed.