clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Breaking down the 2020-21 Westchester Knicks roster

New, comments

The roster features assignment players Dennis Smith Jr. & Ignas Brazdeikis, two-way player Jared Harper and former 1st round picks Skal Labissiere, James Young & Justin Patton.

NBA: Orlando Magic at New York Knicks Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been more than 10 months since the Westchester Knicks have played their last game. The wait is almost over. The NBA G League season returns on February 10 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista, FL. Westchester will play a 15-game regular season, which will end on March 5.

The WC Knicks have built their roster with several players who have NBA experience. With the way New York has used their affiliate over the years, there is a chance a Westchester Knick earns an NBA call-up to the Knickerbockers at some point during the 2020-21 season.

Here’s a look at the Westchester Knicks’ 2020-21 roster.

Dennis Smith Jr. - Assignment Player

After falling out of the Knicks’ rotation, Dennis Smith Jr. requested to play with the Westchester Knicks. By seeing time in the G League, the 23-year-old will get game action and a chance to work on his game. Smith will need to work on his jump shot and defense in the G League bubble.

Ignas Brazdeikis - Assignment Player

Ignas Brazdeikis spent most of his rookie season with Westchester (53.2 minutes with NYK and 802.8 with WES). With Brazdeikis not getting much playing time (1.8 MPG in four games) with the Knicks, New York felt it was best having the second-year forward getting playing time in the G League. The Knicks forward was able to display his scoring ability, which saw him shoot well in the mid-range area. He felt most comfortable with the left wing three where he connected on 40 percent of those attempts. Brazdeikis averaged 20.9 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game on 50.1 percent shooting from the field.

Jared Harper - Two-Way Player

Jared Harper, a Knicks two-way player, started out his professional career as a two-way player with the Phoenix Suns. He displayed his scoring ability with the Northern Arizona Suns where he averaged 20.8 points per game in 33 games. The Knicks claimed him off waivers and signed him to a two-way contract. He showed his offensive skills, athleticism, and used his elite speed to get to the rim. He hasn’t seen much time with the New York Knicks this season, so he may get more action in the Disney bubble with Westchester.

Theo Pinson - Two-Way Player

Theo Pinson joined the New York Knicks as the team’s second two-way player after getting waived by the Brooklyn Nets. While Pinson saw time in the G League last season, he spent more time with Brooklyn. In his time with Long Island, he showed an improved three-point shot, showed some solid play on the defensive end, and showed he could facilitate Long Island’s offense. Pinson, like Harper, could see time with Westchester.

Bryce Brown - Returning Player (via trade)

Bryce Brown played in 34 games as a rookie with the Maine Red Claws where he averaged 16.0 points and 3.7 rebounds per game on 42.7 precent from beyond the arc. He showcased his perimeter game last season where he was No. 13 in the G League (minimum 20 games) with 42.7 percent. Along with Brown showing his three-point game, the second-year guard has shown good footwork and active hands on the defensive end, along with being a solid on-ball defender.

Myles Powell - Affiliate Player

After averaging 21.0 points and 1.2 steals per game in his senior season at Seton Hall, Myles Powell signed with the New York Knicks. At Seton Hall, Powell showed he could score from anywhere on the floor and has an above average slashing ability that he consistently improve on throughout his collegiate career. While he has a great ability to score where he averaged at least 21.0 points in consecutive seasons, Powell has shown he can force shots at times. The rookie guard will have to improve defensively, which includes fighting over screens. Powell is already a pro scorer, but he’ll have an opportunity to further develop his game with Westchester.

Skal Labissiere - Affiliate Player

Skal Labissiere has played in 151 total NBA games in his four year career and last played with the Portland Trail Blazers last season where he averaged 5.7 points and 5.1 rebounds in 17.2 minutes per game. He started to show he could have a major role in Portland last season before suffering a knee injury in December of 2019. Labissiere was developing his game with his strong defense and made improvements with his shooting in his two seasons in Portland. He has shown the ability to face up and hit the mid-range shot and has shown to drain the three.

James Young - Affiliate Player

James Young, a 2014 first round pick, suited up in 95 NBA games across four seasons and most recently played with Maccabi Bazan Haifa in Israel. He averaged 20.5 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game on 41.1 percent from beyond the arc last season. Young showed an improved perimeter shot over the past couple of seasons. He shot below 36 percent (2015-16 & 2017-18), but that number increased to above 41 percent (42.2% in 2018-19 & 41.1% in 2019-20).

Andrew White III - Returning Player

Andrew White III returns to the team after playing in 41 games last season for Westchester. A known three-point shooter, White III started off the 2019-20 season with a 39 point game and 32-point performance the following game against the Oklahoma City Blue. He shot 16-of-20 from deep in those two games. If the Syracuse product can string together efficient shooting games, he can put himself in a position at another NBA opportunity.

2019-20 season recap:

Tyler Hall - Returning Player

Tyler Hall returns to Westchester for his second professional season after averaging 9.3 points per game on 41.0 percent shooting from three in 39 games. As the 2019-20 season progressed, his production increased. Hall showed to be a solid catch-and-shoot shooter, while connecting on 44.2 percent of his shots from the left corner and 43.2 percent from the left wing. Westchester counted on him to make shots and he showed that when he forced overtime against the Raptors 905 in February of 2019. With the skills Hall brings to Westchester, he could position himself to earn an

2019-20 season recap:

Louis King - Affiliate Player

As a two-way player for the Detroit Pistons for the 2019-20 season, Louis King spent most of his rookie season with the Grand Rapids Drive where he averaged 14.9 points and 5.3 rebounds per game on 42.0 percent shooting from the field.

He can navigate between screens as an on ball defender, has active hands, and has a high basketball IQ. The Oregon product can drive to the basket, can finish with either hand, can move well off the ball, and can run the pick-and-roll smooth as the ballhandler. King needs to have more of a consistent shot (shot 33.3 percent on 4.6 threes per game). He shot 61.5 percent (G League average was 65%) in the restricted area and that number could be higher if he didn’t force shots.

Justin Patton - Draft (Rights Reserved-WIS)

A first round pick in 2017, Justin Patton’s career has been affected by injuries (broken left and right foot within 16 month span). While he has played in nine NBA games, most of his play has come in the G League the past three season. He last competed with the Oklahoma City Blue and Wisconsin Herd during the 2019-20 season. For a 7’0” big man, Patton has shown he could have an inside presence (3.1 blocks per game last season), can hit an occasional three, made some nice passes, and shoots at a high percentage in the restricted area.

Twitter thread

*Westchester reserves Patton’s rights this season due to Wisconsin’s nonattendance in this upcoming G League single site condensed season.

Tra-Deon Hollins - Returning Player (via trade)

A fourth-year guard, Tra-Deon Hollins is playing his fourth season in the G League with his third team. He last played with the Grand Rapids Drive where he averaged 6.8 points and 7.8 rebounds. While Hollins didn’t have the best shooting splits (35.5/18.6/73.5) last season, he made an impact as a solid perimeter defender and has show he can force turnovers (2.6 SPG last season). He played a huge role in Grand Rapids being a top defensive team last season. Hollins will likely played a huge role on the defensive side for Westchester this season.

Simi Shittu - Returning Player (via trade)

Simi Shittu spent his rookie season with the Windy City Bulls where he averaged 12.3 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game on 56.9 percent shooting from the field. Most of Shittu’s offense came as a roll man due to his size and mobility. He converted on 58.6 percent of his shots at the basket, which was close to league average.

Coaching Staff And Basketball Operations

Head coach: Derrick Alston
Assistant coach: Allen Deep
Assistant coach: Jaren Jackson Sr.
Assistant General Manager: Ryan Borges
Athletic Trainer: Yen Pham
Strength and Conditioning Coach: Mike Atkinson
Video Coordinator: Joel Garcia