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News » New York Knicks Notes, Quotes 2009-11-13

New York Knicks Notes, Quotes 2009-11-13

New York Knicks Notes, Quotes 2009-11-13--G Chris Duhon's alarmingly bad performance this season coupled with a strong game by rookie G Toney Douglas in Monday's loss to the Jazz was enough to make Mike D'Antoni think about making a change at the point guard position, which is the most critical in his up-tempo, ball-movement system. So he did, sort of, when he inserted Douglas into the starting lineup against the Hawks. But he left the struggling Duhon in the starting five as well and sent Larry Hughes to the bench.

This was clearly to keep Duhon -- who looks completely gassed and terribly out of synch -- from losing any more confidence in himself. But it didn't change much, as the former Dukie had his second scoreless game of the early season and for the third time in four games failed to hit a field goal. D'Antoni could only shake his head and say that Duhon has "got to play out of it."

That so far has been an exercise in failure. Duhon against Atlanta was 0-for-6 from the floor with three turnovers and two assists. In his past four games, he is shooting 2-for-23 from the floor and is clearly lacking any ambition to push the transition game.

--Which leads us back to Toney Douglas, whom the Knicks bought from the Lakers at the 29th overall pick in the June draft. Douglas has shown the confidence to play tenacious defense and also find his shot. Against Atlanta the former Florida State star (who was runner-up last season for ACC Player of the Year) made 10 of 19 from the floor for a career-high 23 points, two better than what he did against the Jazz on Monday. The decision to start him at least gave the Knicks a much needed spark right from the opening tip, which has been a major trouble spot this season. But while Douglas was able to score and defend, he didn't quite fit what D'Antoni's system really needs at the point, which is to facilitate and keep the offense popping. Douglas recorded just one assist against three turnovers in 35:44. Said D'Antoni, "He's got some learning to do."

But there's no doubt that Douglas has earned himself a place very high in the rotation, if not to remain in the starting lineup. Energizer Nate Robinson is expected to return to the lineup on Friday after missing five games with an ankle sprain and it will be interesting to see how D'Antoni plays his guards once Robinson is ready to go at full speed. He could play Robinson and Douglas together as a defensive-pressure backcourt tandem, which would make Duhon the odd-man out.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "Whether it would turn things around or not, one win would be great right now, that's for sure." -- C David Lee, on the awful start to the season for the Knicks.

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Author: Fox Sports
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Added: November 13, 2009


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