4. Players who stretch the floor
The New York Knicks shot just 34 percent from behind the arc last season, which placed in the bottom five of the NBA. Other teams were proficient shooters, most of which made the postseason or found deeper runs into May and June.
This was already a weak-shooting team before the Kristaps Porzingis trade, which sent out Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr., both of whom were consistent contributors. So, after it happened, the team bottomed out from behind the arc.
However, the Knicks found players who stretch the floor, with the following marks from the 2018-19 season:
- Bobby Portis: 39.3 percent
- Reggie Bullock: 37.7 percent
- Marcus Morris: 37.5 percent
- Wayne Ellington: 37.1 percent
- Julius Randle: 34.4 percent
Will this make New York proficient on three-pointers? Maybe not, but they should find more consistency and be able to modernize their playing style.
These players help in both the backcourt and the frontcourt, so the front office addressed not just one part of the roster. Granted, Bullock might miss a chunk of the season due to injury, but he developed into a sneaky good shooter over the past three years, making 40.3 percent of his long-range attempts. If that continues whenever he returns, it marks another backcourt upgrade.
Plus, the Knicks had few three-point shooters remaining on their roster, and Barrett and Brazdeikis’s respective impacts are unknown.
Shooting better will, of course, keep a team involved in more games. The Knicks set themselves up for this, which should make the upcoming season even slightly interesting.