Knicks vs. Pelicans, Final Preseason Game

The Zion-less Pelicans come to New York for the final preseason game. The problem I’m having with the preseason is that I don’t even know if the guys they’re playing in the preseason matter one way or the other. So what does any of it really matter?

Don’t get me wrong, if you’ve been here long enough, you’ll know that I’ve been rocking “Preseason is meaningless” for years now, so I never take much from it, but it seems ESPECIALLY meaningless now with how Fizdale’s been weaving players in and out of the rotation.

I assume he’ll just pick a few names out of a hat for the first real game of the season. Sources: There’s been early grumbling among some Knicks about role with the team

Ian Begley with some tea:

Fizdale cautioned not too overvalue his starting lineup on opening night. He will tweak minutes and roles based on performance.

“(Lineups) are not set in stone just because we’re getting out of preseason,” the coach said. “That thing can always be a revolving door because these guys are so competitive. From one week to the next, it can be a different guy. And I want them to stay on edge like that.”

Particularly in the backcourt and wing positions, Fizdale has plenty of options. He’s been starting RJ Barrett at shooting guard ahead of Wayne Ellington, Allonzo Trier and Damyean Dotson. (Trier didn’t play on Wednesday but will play with the second unit on Friday).

At small forward/wing, Fizdale has started Marcus Morris ahead of Kevin Knox II.

No matter who he plays on a given night, there will be several players left out of the rotation who came into the season expecting to play. So it shouldn’t be a surprise that, per SNY sources, there has already been some grumbling about minutes/roles.

Players not being thrilled about their minutes/roles is pretty common in the NBA. All coaches/teams deal with it to a certain degree. But the idea that the Knicks have so many players who – from the outside at least – can make a case for a spot in the rotation makes this something to keep an eye on.

If you’re grumbling about playing time in preseason, then you either A. should buy a clue if you were one of the guys who were already here like Trier or B. should buy a clue and not sign here if you were one of the 52 mediocre veterans who signed here at the same time.