The Knicks are waiting for the newly-acquired Cam Reddish to make his team debut after pulling off a trade with the Atlanta Hawks last week as the 22-year-old is dealing with a sprained ankle.
While his playing status for Monday’s Martin Luther King Day matinee at Madison Square Garden against the Charlotte Hornets is still unknown, Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau admitted that playing time won’t just be waiting for Reddish once he suits up.
“With every team, every day you’re working on the development of your team and your players and you have a finite amount of minutes available in each game — 240 minutes,’’ Thibodeau said (h/t New York Post). “So you have to play whoever gives you the best chance to win. And nobody’s development is more important than someone else’s development. Winning has to come first. You play who gives you the best chance to win. If you’re in the rotation, you have to perform well.’’
The two had a conversation on Saturday before the Knicks took down Reddish’s former team, the Hawks, 117-108 to improve to 22-21 on the season.
All eyes are going to be on Reddish as a legitimate small forward option to provide a well-rounded scoring threat to complement RJ Barrett and Julius Randle. The Duke product had been underutilized in Atlanta, averaging 11.9 points in 23.4 minutes per game while shooting 42.1% from the field and 38% from three-point range.
But the Knicks have no shortage of small forwards, especially when Alec Burks and Evan Fournier are starting at the guard spots. Barrett sees time at the 3 along with Burks, Fournier, and Obi Toppin.
“You don’t lock into one player, you lock into our team,’’ Thibodeau continued. “So it’s not just Cam’s development or just [Immanuel Quickley’s]. It’s everyone’s development. I’m looking forward to working with Cam. Practice is important to me. You have to earn what you get, it’s that simple.’’