Tim’s Time: Hardaway Jr. leading the way for the Knicks
The New York Knicks haven’t had a lot to hang there hat on thus far this season. Kristaps Porzingis is out until January with a torn ACL. Kevin Knox is out for two to four weeks with a sprained ankle. Enes Kanter is wanted by the Turkish government for speaking his mind. On top of all of that, the Knicks currently sit at the 13th seed in the East, only winning one game out of four.
The season is still young, though, and with any luck things will brighten up. However, one thing the fans can be happy about is the great play of Tim Hardaway Jr.
Four games into the season, Tim Hardaway Jr. seems like he is off to a great start. The 26 year-old shooting guard has been putting visible effort into both sides of the ball. He currently leads the Knicks in scoring, with a career high 27 points a game, shooting 41.8% from the field. Moreover, he has increased his three point shooting percentage and free throw percentage as well. He is now shooting 37.8% from beyond the arch, as opposed to 34.4 % last year. He also increased his free throw shooting percentage from roughly 80% last season to 90% this season. While these are still early figures, they are indicative of the mind set that Hardaway Jr. is approaching this season with.
On the defensive side of the ball, Hardaway Jr. has worked on taking advantage of passing lanes. He is now averaging 1.5 steals per game. This increase is encouraging, especially in perspective of the latest NBA trend of slacking defense. By setting a precedent for his teammates to still work on that side of the ball, Hardaway Jr. is also emerging as a leader for this squad. Once again, this is an early, but indicative, sign from the shooting guard in his sixth season.
When the best player on your team goes down, it’s easy to let team morale to slip to the cracks. The amount of countervailing circumstances don’t make things any better for New York. In spite of it all, Tim Hardaway Jr.’s effort should be even more appreciated. While the team still has its work cut out for it, Hardaway Jr. appears to be leading the way to a more productive season. Now, all New York has to do is capitalize on his efforts.
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