The New York Knicks have six games remaining in their 2015-16 season. They were officially eliminated from the playoffs last weekend, and unofficially eliminated many weeks before that. For most normal teams, this situation would represent an opportunity to play younger guys. Well guess what, friends: The Knicks are about to get normal!
Last night, Rambis said the organization & players talked about cutting down mins for main guys. Will increase role & young players mins.— Jonah Ballow (@jonahballow) March 31, 2016
Rambis said several of the veterans (Melo, Calderon, Lopez) talked to him about cutting their mins to open time for the younger players.— Jonah Ballow (@jonahballow) March 31, 2016
Rambis also discussed lowering mins for vets to increase mins for young players with Phil Jackson & Steve Mills. All in agreement.— Jonah Ballow (@jonahballow) March 31, 2016
Carmelo Anthony, Jose Calderon and Robin Lopez stepped in and put the team's future development over their own playing time. I'm glad somebody did! It should be noted that all three of those vets are locked in for next season. They're not playing for contracts, and they also have a vested interest in seeing their younger teammates grow as players heading into 2016-17.
As for the coach, this move would certainly seem out of character for him, would it not? Probably because he said this three days ago:
Rambis isn't planning to change the starting lineup or rotations now that the Knicks were officially eliminated from the playoffs.— Al Iannazzone (@Al_Iannazzone) March 28, 2016
And then he said this following Monday night's loss to New Orleans:
Jerian Grant had a bruised quad but that's not the reason he sat today. Rambis said he was looking for experience.— Stefan Bondy (@SBondyNYDN) March 29, 2016
If anything, this seems like an organization-wide intervention.You're addicted to experience, Kurt. It's killing you, and it's killing us.
Will this finally mean consistent minutes for rookie Jerian Grant? We'll just have to wait and see. Rambis didn't exactly show a great deal of faith in him Wednesday night; with Calderon injured, the coach went without a point guard down the stretch against Dallas. Needless to say, it didn't work. It's never wise to trust an experience junky.