New York Knicks 2022-23 NBA Preview: Could RJ Barrett Become an All-Star? Is Galen Bronson worth the money?

The New York Knicks He won’t put enough assets on the table, or designated assets Utah Jazz Required, to strike a deal with Donovan Mitchell, leaving Jalen Bronson as a valuable summer acquisition for a team that went from fourth seed in 2020-21 to failing to even qualify for play last season.

In addition to signing Bronson (four years, $104 million), New York re-signed Mitchell Robinson in a four-year, $60 million deal and booked RJ Barrett through 2027 on a junior extension that could be worth up to $120 million. That’s a lot of money for three guys who weren’t even close to all-stars.

Is New York a legit playoff team? It depends on a few factors, three of which we’ll touch on below in something like the release of Cliff Notes for Knicks 2022-23 Preview.

Major changes

existing

Key Top: Developed by RJ Barrett

The Knicks attempted to trade Barrett to Utah, but in the end, it was reported that he would not include Quentin Grimes or an additional unprotected draft pick for their bid. So now Donovan Mitchell is in Cleveland and Barrett has a four-year, $120 million extension with the Knicks. For me, the Knicks got a lucky break with Utah not to accept their offer. I don’t think Mitchell deserved what the Utahns wanted from the Knicks, and I think Barrett has an all-star pick in his (probably near) future.

The shot is a Barrett oscillation factor. Last season he hit 40 percent of the field. Two seasons ago, he fired 40 percent of 3. That’s the difference between a potential All-Star Barrett and the man the Knicks tried to trade and were reluctant to reward with a long-term extension before they were forced to play.

If Barrett’s shot could harden, it would be impossible to get it off the paint. After starting the calendar last season, Barrett averaged 7.7 shots in the restricted area, which ranked fourth in the league, and 7.4 free throw attempts per game, which ranked 11. He’s like Zion Williamson’s light in terms of his ability to lead his way Down the slope and to his left hand even though the whole yard knew he was going that way.

With that kind of paint-busting success, Barrett just needs to seal the deal once he gets there; A 55 percent conversion rate at the edge and 30 percent in the 4-14 foot range, per glass cleaning, won’t cut it.

Think about this: From January 1 forward, Barrett averaged 23.6 points, six rebounds, and 3.5 assists while serving as the main winger for the Knicks and played 37.1 minutes per game. Now imagine a player has an effective field goal percentage with only the league average. That’s all stars, guys.

Next: Bronson is worth the money?

As mentioned above, Knicks had a huge hit at Bronson: four years, $104 million. Could it be the best option out of Luka Doncic’s orbit? For what it’s worth, the Mavericks He outplayed opponents by 4.1 points per 100 possessions last season with Doncic on the bench and Bronson running the show, in clearing the glass. Bronson, especially in the playoffs, has proven that he can lead a good team as a starting point guard at the All-Star level.

The bad news is Bronson’s three-point shot – without Doncic creating an open field appearance for him – dropped four percent (36 to 32) when he played alone last season. Now consider this: The Knicks don’t think he has the same kind of divergence that Dallas had last season. If Julius Randle doesn’t back down to the 2020-21 All-Star campaign when he shot 41 percent of 3 to give drivers some breathing room, it will be very exciting to see how much space Bronson can create in a condensed space. Adjust.

Bottom line: This is a big step for Bronson. Doncic won’t have to carry the burden every night anymore. He is no longer in the honeymoon period for being a second-round player playing with house money. Now he has Knicks money. Nine digits of it, in fact. And he will be subjected to a new kind of pressure to perform every night.

Another thing: trade season?

New York has eight first-round draft picks eligible to trade between 2023 and 2029. The Knicks would likely be happy to transfer Randle if anyone took that contract. What kept Knicks not trading for Mitchell was the ability to do a different, and possibly even bigger, strength swing if the opportunity presents itself.

Who knows if an unhappy star will come out of the woodwork around the trade deadline. There are a number of possible scenarios and targets, but the point is that New York has options. A lot of them. Various ways to structure an attractive package with draft pick attachments to salaries that might not be tradable on their own – plus young assets like Obi Toppin, Quentin Grimes and Immanuel Quickley.

When the Knicks passed Mitchell, it wasn’t an indication that they were okay with the list they had. It just means that they think that a better deal – or deals – at some point, will be available to them. Maybe they’re looking to hit a few singles instead of running on their own turf. Perhaps at least one of them will happen this season.

Main Games

The reason the Knicks are in 10th place is because we don’t feel like they’ll be part of the conversation in May. Oh, but it could still be quite the regular season at Madison Square Garden after the season opener on the road against the Ja Morant-led team. Memphis Grizzlies.

For years, followers have been tracking when LeBron James might overtake Kareem Abdul-Jabbar on the NBA hit list, and most predictions still suggest that the perfect place for that to happen is some time between mid-January and mid-February, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise. that james Los Angeles Lakers He is scheduled to visit the world’s most famous arena smack dab in the middle of that period. Then again, it also helps that the Lakers – as they do every year – take a long road trip during that calendar time when the Grammy Awards take home. (Hey, it was just a theory.)

Once again, the Knics put themselves in the Christmas Day game, and for those of you into the revenge-reunion-the whole desertion factor-whether real or imagined-a couple of these matches should be fun, too. That is, unless we believe that these Dallas Mavericks and Cleveland Cavaliers The competitions that Doncic and Mitchell will be playing in on back-to-back days in early December will be just two more games on the table.

  • October 19: Knicks at Grizzlies (ESPN)
  • December 3rd: Mavericks at the Knicks
  • December 4th: Cavaliers at the Knicks
  • December 25: 76ers In the Knicks (ESPN)
  • January 31: Lakers at the Knicks (TNT)

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