As the new season approaches, the Knicks‘ roster is finally starting to take shape.
There were only a few question marks regarding the final few available spots on the roster, and one of them was just filled with combo-forward Luka Samanic.
The Croatian Samanic was drafted 19th overall during the 2019 NBA Draft out of both the Slovenian League and ABA League.
He’s one of the very few 1st round swings and misses by the Spurs and coach Gregg Popovich.
Not to say he can’t turn his career around but Coach Pop and the Spurs very rarely mess up and release their former 1st rounders before their rookie contract is up.
Samanic stands at 6-foot-11 and weighs in at 227lbs.
You’d think due to his size and length he’d be able to play a little Center if called upon but his somewhat scrawny frame only allows him to play some SF but mostly PF.
NBADraft.net’s scouting report on Luka stated that he was a do-it-all offensive dynamo with ball skills and a nice shooting touch, but unfortunately, he’s yet to realize this potential at the NBA level.
Knicks sign Luka Samanic to last Two-Way roster spot
There’s also some question regarding his motor on both sides of the ball…this kid reminds me way too much of Kevin Knox so far.
Based on the above video alone, I’d think he wouldn’t last a day under Tom Thibodeau but there had to have been some other context as to why he completely gave up on that play.
From the little research I’ve done so far, supposedly the writing was on the wall and Luka was no longer happy in San Antonio…and was likely on his way out anyway.
Samanic is still just 21-years-old and considering the Knicks have the highest-paid coaching/development staff in the league, a few weeks with the team should do the kid some good.
It’s funny, I just published an article the other day about who I thought the Knicks would keep on as their other two-way contract, and I couldn’t have been more incorrect.
I’d assumed the team was done bringing in new faces but after Luka was cut a few days back, the front office must have an idea in mind with bringing him onto the squad.
It’s an incredibly low-risk, high-reward situation…so let’s see how things pan out.
The Knicks still likely have one roster spot left after releasing Dwayne Bacon, so I’m excited to see who else makes the final cut.