Despite going undrafted in the 2017, Luke Kornet has quietly left a solid impression on the New York Knicks over the past two seasons. Whether during his stints in the G League or getting called up to the NBA, the Vanderbilt product has not only been productive and improving with each appearance. At this point, it’s no longer a matter of if Kornet will be in the NBA next season.
2018-’19 Stats: 46 G, 7.0 PPG (37.8 FG% / 36.3 3PT % / 82.6 FT %), 2.9 RPG, 0.9 BPG, 14.8 PER.
This past season was different from Kornet’s rookie campaign, as he spent more time with the big Knicks than he did in Westchester. His appearance total of 46 was 26 more than the previous year. He even managed to start in 18 games.
So what did we see from the UniKornet? When Kornet was given his touches from beyond the arc, he certainly took advantage of them. The big guy led the team with an eye-popping 8.8 three-point attempts per 36 minutes. He hit his threes at a decent 36.3% clip, which helped to mitigate a 41.1% mark from inside the arc, almost inconceivable for a seven-footer.
Though Kornet’s low rebounding statistics are tough to look at, he can always improve. When reviewing his last month of play, Kornet increased his rebounding production from 2.7 per game to 6.6. In fact, Kornet finished four games with five plus rebounds, including a career-high 13 in an April 13th performance against the Chicago Bulls.
Kornet has improved his game and overall physical condition. Even while being a bit lanky, Kornet’s upper body is beginning to fill out and his lower base has gotten use to the grind and playing style on this level. But there is still more strength and conditioning work left to do. Kornet has to improve his rebounding and shooting around the rim. If he does that, perhaps he will be capable of receiving 20-25 minutes a game as a backup to Mitchell Robinson.