Knicks Well Represented at NBA All Star Weekend
It is All-Star Weekend in Toronto and two New York Knicks: Kristaps Porzingis and Carmelo Anthony, are representing their team all weekend.
Friday night rookie sensation Kristaps Porzingis got started off as he led Team World in the Rising Stars Challenge with 30 points in the 157-154 loss to the USA team.
Kristaps Porzingis led the World in the All-Star Rising Stars Challenge on 12- of-16 shooting and 5-of-8 from the three-point line. Unfortunately, like many times this season with the Knicks, Porzingis was not able to bring his squad to victory as they came up three points shorts.
The Rookie-Sophomore game was originally a matchup between a team of the best NBA rookies and a team of the best NBA sophomores in 2012, called the Rising Stars Challenge. In 2015 the format changed again and it became the USA vs. the World in which rookies and sophomores were placed on a team of either American born players versus players born in the rest of the World.
In the Rookie-Sophomore matchup, Porzingis, the 7-3 Latvian all star showed his ability to not only be a force around the basket, but also shooting and dribbling skills. He is without a doubt in the running for the Rookie of the Year Award, against many including Karl Towns of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Porzingis competed against fellow Rookie of the Year competitor Towns Friday night. Porzingis has started 54-of- 54 games and has averaged 13.9 points per game so far this season along with 1.9 blocks and 1.2 assists per game.
From the performance last night, it seems like this may be the first All-Star weekend of many for Porzingis. Teammate Carmelo Anthony will be playing in the main event, the 65th East vs. West All-Star game tomorrow night at 8p.m. ET on TNT. Although it is the first All-Star experience for Porzingis, Anthony is making his ninth appearance since getting drafted to the Denver Nuggets in 2003. Melo is averaging 21.4 points per game, 4.2 assists, and 2.5 blocks in 48 starts of 48 played games for the New York Knicks.
The Knicks have 25 games left in the regular season. They are currently nine games under .500 (23-32) and in the process of a new Head Coach after firing Derrick Fisher. Porzingis is now under his second coach in one year in the league. Although, many of the players are upset by the release of Fisher, they are all focused on doing whatever they can for the benefit of the team.