Will the New York Knicks offense shock the world in the NBA playoffs?

RJ Barrett, NY Knicks. Mandatory Credit: Frank Franklin II/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports
RJ Barrett, NY Knicks. Mandatory Credit: Frank Franklin II/POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports /
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New York Knicks
Julius Randle, Derrick Rose, New York Knicks.(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) /

New York Knicks: Team looks to get full rotation back soon

The New York Knicks have been playing with a slew of minor injuries. Alec Burks has missed extensive time but recently returned, Immanuel Quickley missed most of the West Coast trip also returned, and Derrick Rose missed the team’s last game against the Spurs.

Burks, Quickley, and Rose have all been crucial to New York’s offensive success. They provide significant boosts of scoring.

Against the Spurs, although there were some rough stretches, the Knicks were getting whatever looks they wanted in the 4th quarter. They shot 50% from three in that quarter to close San Antonio out.

Before that game, we saw the Knicks go 3-3 on their West Coast trip, which was a positive showing against a tough slate of teams. Still, that Lakers game got away with them.

I wrote an article earlier in the week about how the Lakers defended the Knicks in that game.

Yes, the game was close. Yes, the Lakers are a great defensive team – but that’s where we are now, we’re in the playoffs getting ready to face the best teams in the league. This isn’t being overly critical, this is talking about how a really good team (The Knicks) can potentially take down a great team (76ers, Bucks, Nets).

The Lakers essentially did everything in their power to defend the perimeter. It’s not an easy task against New York, but it can be an effective one. It required their perimeter defenders to relentlessly fight through screens and never switch.

They would send all of their extra focus to the perimeter when Julius Randle had the ball to make sure he wasn’t executing those kick-outs he does so well. They dared the Knicks to attack the rim – they didn’t want their snipers to get good looks.

It’s something we’ve seen against teams the New York Knicks have struggled with. The Knicks have gone 0-3 against the Miami Heat this season, a strong defensive team that really focused on daring New York to attack the paint. The Knicks shot just 34.0% from 3 against Miami this season.

The same can be said about their last two games against the Milwaukee Bucks, another strong defensive team who they will very likely play in round one of the NBA playoffs. The Knicks shot just 35.8% from 3 in their last two matchups, both losses.

Here’s the thing – it’s not a death sentence. It’s not as simple as “Take away the 3 and the Knicks lose”. Opponents really have to work hard to neutralize New York, who is already an exhausting matchup on defense.

So how can the Knicks prepare? How can they continue to make adjustments and keep their shooting alive in the NBA playoffs? If they do, they can make a lot of noise.