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Game Preview: Magic @ Knicks, 1/18/2021

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Happy Marting Luther King Day!

Discours de Martin Luther King Photo by REPORTERS ASSOCIES/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Hopefully the Knicks don’t have a romp-hangover. After brutalizing the Celtics to get off the schneid, they’re right back at it 23 hours later against the Magic. Orlando lost their young point guard, Markelle Fultz, for the season and have suffered a series of blow outs in the ensuing games, including a drubbing at the hands of the very Celtics that New York just served an order of thumplings to.

March On Washington For Jobs And Freedom Photo by Robert W. Kelley/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images

Projected Starters

I don’t know when it will be. But sooner or later you know what time it is.

Its Immanuel Quickley’s time and maybe eventually it will be Kevin Knox’s time. Quietly Knox has been doing what Tom Thibodeau said would make him a good player. It’s clear that the coach is having that effect on a lot of these guys and while the Knicks aren’t some elite worldbeater, they absolutely play with a preparedness and composure we haven’t seen in quite some time. So while I still think we’re not there, maybe today is the day.

Immanuel Quickley v. Cole Anthony

Reggie Bullock v. Dwayne Bacon

RJ Barrett v. James Ennis

Julius Randle v. Aaron Gordon

Mitchell Robinson v. Nikola Vucevic

I had to start small but usurping those Reggie Bullock minutes is on the horizon. Bullock has been mostly fine, he’s just uninspiring. Although billed as a shooter, the .327% from deep tells us something different. Per 100 possessions he only shoots 7.9 to boot, aka not enough! These one dribble step in jumpers have to drive someone on the coaching staff crazy.

King At Home With His Family Photo by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Keys & Predictions

Am I the only one that is really worried about Mitchell Robinson? The guy is clearly rolling on a bum wheel. Nikola Vucevic is low key a big man that will pound his way to the block, get you with a little shrug, and plow through any overly jumpy feller. Mitch has absolutely done well to stay on his feet more this season, but just one of those little scenarios could totally lead to an awkward landing and boom! Nerlens Noel is starting for an extended period. I worry!

Anyway, disrupt Cole Anthony, cover the passing lanes and make him beat you and make them beat you with shaky jumpers off the dribble. Just treat everyone like Reggie Bullock basically. Should be fine.

Knicks by -4

Martin Luther King Jr. Photo by Don Cravens/The LIFE Images Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images

Warm Up Music

One more picture before I go and a couple thoughts. This is what runs through my head all day, every day, since high school. I’ve probably said this before but Martin Luther King was my yearbook quote, “The greatest purveyor of violence in the world today, my own government.” I had a CD of his speeches (almost all of which are available on spotify and youtube, etc.) and they all opened my young mind and sent chills through my soul.

If Dr. King were alive today he’d be 92 but he was murdered at 39. All the questions he posed at that time persist today. What is this world we live in where compassion is not second nature but second class? We have so long to go as a society. We treat sports as our hallowed temples of worship, then tell the disciples to keep their thoughts to themselves. Maybe you don’t but in a sick society, we are all sick. Whether it’s our madness or our breath.

I know we won’t make it where we need to be before I’m gone, but that doesn’t grant me the right to run roughshod through this world, caring only for my self-interest. Claiming anyone or anything that interrupts convenience is infringing on my rights as a citizen of the world. I have to leave my little corner of this mythological beast a better place than how I found it. Am I certain of the way to enact change, no not always, but I know it when I see it. Certain things I’m sure I’ll never figure out. Keep learning from one another. Heal what you can, while you’re here. Even if that means all you fix is your own heart. We’ll need you.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Photo by Francis Miller/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images