4. Can Kevin Knox And Mario Hezonja Work The 3-Spot?
When the New York Knicks drafted Kevin Knox and signed Mario Hezonja, it certainly appeared as though the front office was filling the void at small forward. Trading Carmelo Anthony was the only option, but playing without adequate size and length at the 3-spot hurt the Knicks in 2017-18.
With Knox expected to win the starting job at small forward, Troy Williams’ dismissal beckons a significant question: Can Hezonja play the 3?
This may seem like a silly question to ask, as Hezonja was drafted as a small forward, and played a significant portion of his minutes at the position in 2015-16 and 2016-17. In 2017-18, however, he spent 58 percent of the season at power forward.
That’s an especially concerning truth when one considers that 2017-18 was easily the best season of Hezonja’s NBA career—on both ends of the floor.
Furthermore, prior to the 2018 Summer League, the general consensus about Knox was that he’d be at his best as a small-ball 4. With the emergence of Mitchell Robinson at center, and the pending return of Kristaps Porzingis at power forward, however, it makes sense to play Knox at the 3.
Waiving Williams has created the opportunity for Hezonja and Knox to spend more time at small forward, but it’s fair to question if that’s a good thing for the former.