When the Knicks traded for Derrick Rose it was largely viewed as a positive move for the team. New York traded Dennis Smith jr, a player that was a non-factor on the team, and a measly mid-second-round pick for a player who’s a high-quality point guard, at least in theory. Rose has been a solid addition.
His 13 points and 4 assists per game are needed off the bench but he needs to play a lot better for the Knicks to win games and make the playoffs. Recently Rose has been very disappointing. In the recent loss to the Brooklyn Nets, Rose’s end of the game stat line was decent but he folded when the Knicks desperately needed a spark. Rose finished the game with 16 points but he shot just 0 of 4 from the field in the second half.
The Knicks squandered a 13 point lead to the Nets in the 3rd quarter which was ultimately their undoing. They could have desperately used some offense from Rose in the 3rd and 4th quarter to stop the Nets run, but unfortunately, Rose provided next to nothing which contributed to the defeat. Before that game, Rose had a 7 point game against the Bucks on 3 of 6 shooting, an absolutely miserable 2 point game on 1 of 10 shooting against the Bucks, and a solid 16-point game on 6 of 13 shooting against the Heat.
As we can see from his recent games, Rose has been pretty inconsistent, to say the least. Some nights Rose’s shooting is hot but other nights he simply can’t buy a basket. Perhaps, he’s still recovering from missing several games due to health and safety protocols but the Knicks need more from Rose if they hope to make the playoffs.
The Knicks need Rose to provide high-level scoring and playmaking off the bench and be able to deliver in the 3rd and 4th quarters where the Knicks tend to struggle. The Knicks have lost several winnable games this year because they couldn’t score enough points in the clutch. For all of Julius Randle’s strengths, he’s been futile in the clutch. In the loss to the Nets, he missed a pull-up jumper that could have sent the game into overtime.
If Derrick Rose could provide the team some extra points late in games that could have a huge impact on winning. The Knicks do a good job generating stops in the clutch but they desperately need a closer. How Derrick Rose plays in the home stretch of the NBA regular season will play a huge role in whether The Knicks will be playing in the postseason or watching it from home.