This season will prove to be one of Trey Burke’s most important as he showcases that last season was no fluke. Whether his future belongs on the New York Knicks remains uncertain, the former lottery pick will be trying out for his case to start in this league.
The 2018-19 season will be interesting for the New York Knicks as they have a legitimate chance at making the playoffs with a lackluster Eastern Conference. Even with Kristaps Porzingis out of the lineup for an unforeseeable amount of time, the Knicks need to remain competitive, whether trying to make the playoffs, or showcasing their potential to the 2019 free agency class.
One player that needs to keep up his competitive demeanor is last season’s starting point guard, Trey Burke. Burke has proved that he is serious about his development after beginning his Knicks’ tenure on their G-League affiliate in Westchester and waiting patiently for his moment. We never heard any complaints by the Knicks’ guard, and instead he made his play speak for itself.
His moment came and Burke posted a player efficiency rating of 21.0 (career high), while tying his career high in points averaged with 12.8. Keep in mind he did this while playing almost ten fewer minutes a game than his previous seasons as a starter while putting up those numbers.
More from Knicks News
- Former New York Knicks center gets real about 2013 playoff shortcomings
- When is the deadline for the Knicks to extend Immanuel Quickley?
- How to watch New York Knicks players compete for bronze at World Cup
- 3 Reasons Tom Thibodeau can’t ignore Miles McBride in 2023-24
- Knicks fans get super anticlimactic ending to 2023 FIBA World Cup
The playmaker also proved to be a solid and improved distributor putting up 4.7 assists per game and only forcing 1.2 turnovers per game. It was a solid season for Burke, but his play still has a ways to go.
Whether he is a part of the Knicks’ future plans remains uncertain, but he proves to be a valuable asset and good insurance whether the Knicks are looking to keep him longterm or even trade him for more assets. Kyrie Irving’s potential arrival will prove to be a hindrance and motivator for Burke.
I can see this going one of two ways: One has Kyrie Irving signing with the Knicks and ultimately reducing Burke’s role, or the Knicks strike out in free agency, resulting in Burke signing back with the team. In either situation, the Knicks will have Burke’s bird rights, allowing them to go over the cap if need be. This also leads to a potential sign-and-trade with another team if he no longer wishes to play for the Knicks.
In either scenario, Burke will still be a key component to the Knicks playoffs hopes, whether today or in the next few years. For this upcoming season, expect Burke to keep improving, gain more minutes with the starters, and ultimately have one of his most productive seasons.
Consistency in work ethic will be key for Burke coming into this season. As long as he and David Fizdale grow a meaningful relationship, and Burke continues to grind this offseason, we should see the neophyte develop into more than just a capable starter.