The New York Knicks have seen flashes of elite potential from a different center, but don’t be so quick to dismiss Daniel Ochefu. He saw big minutes for the 2016 national champions, and played for the Washington Wizards and three different G League teams between 2016 and 2018.
As the Knicks prepare to build up a G League unit that boasts long-term potential, Ochefu could be a player who’s developed in a Kyle O’Quinn type of role.
Ochefu played 26 minutes against the New Orleans Pelicans, producing a +/- of +17. That was the second-best mark of any player in the game, which supports the O’Quinn comparison in the sense that Ochefu makes those around him better.
Standing at 6’11” with a 7’3″ wingspan, one of the primary manners in which he contributes is as a rim protecting and rebounding defensive presence.
Ochefu took his contributions to another level on Friday, recording 22 points, eight rebounds, four offensive boards, one assist, one block, and a steal. He scored inside at virtual will, shooting 9-of-14 from the field and getting to the charity stripe for four attempts—all of which were converted.
Ochefu may not have a place in the Knicks’ crowded center rotation in 2018-19, but he could be a G League player who makes his way to The Mecca in 2019-20.