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Knicks sign Nathan Knight to its third and final two-way contract

A solid move for a solid player

NBA: Houston Rockets at Minnesota Timberwolves Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

The Knicks used up its third and final two-way spots for the upcoming season by signing 25-year-old big man, Nathan Knight. The Syracuse native started his career in Atlanta where he averaged 3.8PPG and 2.2RPG in 33 games and has spent the past two seasons in Minnesota where he has averaged 3.7PPGand 1.9RPG on 53.8% shooting from the field and 34.3% from three in 75 games.

Knight has had a slow and quiet start to his career but could prove to be a nice project for the Knicks as he does have some upside. Despite failing to hear his name called at the 2020 draft, Knight went into the night as a potential second-round pick. He was looked at as a solid scorer off the dribble and an above-average rebounder who had some promising potential as a stretch big and a secondary playmaker. While he did play in a smaller and less-known conference, Knight was one of the more dominant forces in his final three seasons in college. Using his big frame, handle, and strength, Knight was able to initiate contact, carve out space, and finish around the rim at a high rate.

That being said, there are reasons he’s failed to establish himself as a consistent rotational contributor. Knight has continued to work on his jump shot and his form is rather smooth for a player of his size but he’s far from a consistent shooter as of now. The undrafted big man also tends to struggle a bit on the defensive end as his lack of experience against top competition and lack of elite athleticism seems to hold him back. He is a solid rim protector but when he is asked to switch, guard quicker players, or defend in open space, he can be slow-footed, putting him at risk of fouling unnecessarily evident by his 4.5 fouls per 36 minutes.

This may not be the blockbuster move that fans have been waiting on Leon Rose to concoct but, this signing, however underrated and under the radar it may be, is still a very solid one. Knight, given his status as a two-way player, may not see any consistent minutes this season barring any major injuries but given his impressive college career, rebounding, rim protection, and improving jump shot, the big man could be an interesting project piece for the Knicks and Tom Thibodeau if they can fix some of the defensive concerns. And it also gives them some insurance if Isaiah Roby doesn’t work out or if Julius Randle has to miss an extended period.