RJ Barrett has been one of the most clutch players in the NBA since he was drafted by the New York Knicks in 2019. Barrett has had a knack for knocking down huge shots in the clutch, especially this one over Jayson Tatum. The Knicks’ 120 million dollar man is getting the credit he deserves, as Bleacher Report named RJ Barrett as the second most clutch small forward in the NBA.
B/R put Barrett behind Zach LaVine for most clutch small forwards in the NBA. This would probably shock casual fans that do not watch the Knicks, which is very understandable. Barrett is not yet a big name, and being with New York subjects him to a ridiculous amount of disrespect… just ask Julius Randle.
Bleacher Report lists Knicks’ Julius Randle as second most clutch SF
Barrett is clearly one of the most clutch players in the league, with 43.4/47.1/78.9 shooting splits in 2021-22. For anyone who does not know what this means, he shot 43.4% from the field, 47.1% from three, and 78.9% from the free throw line in clutch situations.
The Knicks missing out on Donovan Mitchell hurt. Still, it does not mean that all hope is lost, and anyone who thinks that has absolutely no clue about what’s actually going on or is sold on the facade that Mitchell can carry an NBA team to the Finals. That was an idea that was manufactured by Danny Ainge and the Utah Jazz to try to fleece New York.
The Knicks have a chance to make a trade to build the team around RJ Barrett while embracing the youth movement and trusting that Barrett can lead the team. There have been tremendous NBA players who just were not good in the clutch. The man who gets the most flak for it is Paul George, but there’s a handful of players who have been perennial All-Stars that could not perform in the clutch.
RJ Barrett can perform in the clutch and has been able to do so since he got into the NBA. He was clutch before the NBA, including an amazing March Madness game-winner to keep his Duke Blue Devils alive after teammate Zion Williamson missed a game-tying free throw.
This is one of the reasons why many of us Knicks fans are so confident in RJ Barrett. Having the clutch gene matters so much to take the next step in the NBA, and Barrett clearly can handle, and even loves, the big moments. He’s built to be a star in New York, and I, for one, can’t wait to see Barrett as the Knicks’ feature player in all of the biggest moments this season.