3 Burning questions the Knicks must answer before the regular season ends

New York Knicks v Portland Trail Blazers
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1: Can Josh Hart find a shooting rhythm?

Despite the string of injuries that New York has dealt with, Josh Hart's recent play has helped the Knicks remain competitive in the conference standings. Hart has accumulated six triple-doubles in the 2023-24 season after recording none throughout his first six years in the NBA.

He's remained one of the best rebounding guards in the league and looks even better as a passer compared to his first season with the Knicks, averaging 4.1 assists compared to just 1.5 turnovers per game this year.

One aspect of his game that has looked noticeably worse is his shooting, though.

While he wasn't expected to maintain the 51.9% three-point shooting mark that he held in 25 games after he was traded to the Knicks during the 2022-23 season, his drop-off has been worse than many thought. In 75 games, Hart is shooting just 30.5% from behind the arc, including 31.9% on catch-and-shoot threes.

This has allowed opposing defenses to disregard him when he's standing behind the three-point line, making it easier to double Jalen Brunson on his drives to the basket.

Hart has shot at least 50% from three in 24 games during the 2023-24 season. In those games, the Knicks have a 17-7 record. If Hart is able to make defenses pay for leaving him open, it allows the rest of New York's offense to run much more smoothly.

It's also worth noting that a similar trend existed during the team's previous playoff run. During the Knicks' first-round victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers, Hart shot 45.5% from three. In New York's second-round defeat against the Miami Heat, he canned a mere 23.8% of his triples.

If he can gain some confidence from behind the arc heading into the playoffs, it will drastically improve the Knicks' chances of winning a series without Randle.

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