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News » New York Knicks Getting Inside 2009-10-31

New York Knicks Getting Inside 2009-10-31

New York Knicks Getting Inside 2009-10-31It's only a matter of time, Mike D'Antoni said, but the time isn't now. At least not yet. But two games into the season, it is becoming clear that the Knicks' most effective scoring threat is Danilo Gallinari, the 21-year-old "redshirt rookie," who is averaging 19 points per game and shooting 52 percent from the field.

But he isn't starting, though D'Antoni clearly went into the season looking for a reason to put him there while also trying to avoid heaping too much pressure on the young Italian's surgically-repaired back.

"Eventually along the way we have to think about Gallinari, do you start him?" D'Antoni said. "That's the biggest impetus, not other people, but do you start him or do you not?"

After an 0-2 start, the Knicks have to consider everything. And though it may be way too early, if things don't improve over the first few weeks of the season, it will soon come time to make the move away from playing some of these expiring-contract veterans and turning the season over to the future of the franchise. That would center everything around Gallinari and include Wilson Chandler and rookies Toney Douglas and Jordan Hill.

"That's kind of where we're going in the future; (Gallinari) and Wilson are where we're going, so why wouldn't you go that way?" D'Antoni admitted. "Whether that's tomorrow, the next day or a month from now, that's the only thing we're kind of weighing."

It won't be an easy decision, of course. Al Harrington, who is playing for a contract and fancies himself not only a starter but a go-to scorer, would not take going to the bench, well, sitting down. D'Antoni has already exiled veteran Larry Hughes (two DNP-CD's in the first two games) to the end of the bench.

But with an eye on rebuilding the franchise through free agency next summer and, therefore, carving out as much salary cap space as possible, there isn't a great deal of emphasis on veteran players. And if you're going to attract a high-end free agent (read: LeBron James), it may be more beneficial to advance the development of the young talent on the team rather than play veterans motivated by their next payday.

BOBCATS 102, KNICKS 100 (2 OT): The poor-shooting Knicks came out flat and fell behind by 21 points in the second quarter to a team that struggled to score 59 points against the Celtics in its previous game. Danilo Gallinari (16 points) helped shoot the Knicks back into it in the fourth quarter, but after he picked up his fifth foul late in the fourth, Mike D'Antoni opted not to play him for most of the overtime periods. D.J. Augustin's two free throws with 2.5 seconds left sealed it for Charlotte (1-1).

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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: October 31, 2009


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