The New York Knicks’ starting center is looking good heading into the 2023-24 NBA regular season.
In his four-game preseason sample, Robinson was efficient and active. He averaged 10.5 points, eight rebounds, one block, and 1.8 steals. Very notably, he shot 80% from the floor and made 20-of-25 field goal attempts. Mitch does his work near the basket and hit 19-of-24 attempts from less than five feet.
In 2021-22, he shot the best percentage of his career, connecting on 76.1% of his two-pointers in 72 games. This included shooting 77% in the restricted area on 331 attempts. Last season, his field goal percentage dropped to 67%, and he played in 59 regular season games. It was good to see Robinson getting back to his old self and being a force down low.
Taking advantage of easy opportunities:
On dunks, he was 12-of-12 and 3-of-3 on alley-oops. Alley-oops have been big for the seven-foot Robinson over the course of his career. In the last two seasons, his teammates have successfully found him on 89-of-100 alley-oop attempts. Since his rookie year, he has converted 218-of-251 (87%) of his alley-oops.
Layups came in at 8-of-13, and he was successful on 5/7 tip shots. Last season, he was awful in the regular season on layups, only hitting 53-of-123 (43.1%) of his attempts. The two areas that tanked him were putback layups (15-of-33) and tip layup shots (26-of-57). In the playoffs, Robinson hit 9-of-23 (39.1%) layups and 10-of-20 (50%) tip shots, not his finest work.
In the 2023-24 preseason, he was 7-of-10 (70%) combined in those two areas.
The ability of Mitchell Robinson to convert his offensive rebounds into points was something I was interested in this season. Robinson may have improved in that area based on the preseason— DJ (@DJAceNBA) October 19, 2023
The tip finishes were especially . Want more passes to shooters but progress .
Free-throw woes continue:
Unfortunately, foul shooting is still a big issue, and Mitch only hit 2/9 attempts this preseason. Last season, Robinson shot 48% from the line, and that number dropped to 39% in the 2023 playoffs. Not much more to say other than that the number just has to get better.
As per usual, Mitchell Robinson was effective rebounding the basketball. He had seven rebounds in three straight games before pulling down 11 in the preseason finale against the Washinton Wizards. His 11 rebounds included six offensive. He has thrived as an offensive rebounder and was first in the NBA last season in offensive rebounds per game. In 2021-22, he finished second in offensive rebounds behind only Steven Adams.
Mitch has been a good rebounder his whole career but is still looking for that first double-digit rebounding season. Last season, he averaged 9.4 per game, second on the team to Julius Randle, who averaged ten. His preseason rebounding breakdown came down to 17 offensive and 15 defensive. He’s an elite offensive rebounder and will give himself plenty of opportunities for second-chance points. This is also why it’s so key he improves the putback and tip shot numbers. There’s a nice amount of points out there for Robinson to convert on a nightly basis.
The seven-footer will always be the defensive anchor for this team. He’s versatile, quick on his feet, and patrols the paint. Last season, he averaged 1.8 blocks per game for the second straight season and has never averaged under 1.5 in his career. Mitchell has also had active hands, picking up at least two steals in three of the four games. In the 2022-23 regular season, he only recorded two or more steals on 16 different occasions. The Knicks and Robinson will look to improve on defense this season after finishing 19th in defensive rating last season.
Watching some Mitchell Robinson and enjoyed this Knicks defensive rep where they pretty successfully navigate Spain, & then Mitch cleans up Tatum abusing Quickley on a back to the basket bully move. pic.twitter.com/QdC5U4gvZe— Brett Kornfeld (@KornHoops) October 17, 2023
It was an encouraging preseason by Mitchell Robinson. If the 25-year-old can stay healthy, he could have a really strong sixth season in New York.
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