New York Knicks: 5 Reasons Anthony Randolph Must Play More
After Wednesday night's 113-106 win at the Sacramento Kings, Anthony Randolph recorded his first DNP-Coach's Decision in a Knicks uniform.
It seems Coach Dantoni has had it with the project big man and has focused his attention to the team, rather than individuals.
In the sporadic playing time Anthony Randolph has been given this year, his play has warranted a decreased role in Mike Dantoni's rotation, but why?
Anthony Randolph has only averaged 11 minutes per game, but when his numbers are multiplied to a Per-48 standard, they are atop the league.
Here are five reasons the young big man must play more for the New York Knicks this season.
16.1 Rebounds Per 48 Minutes
Yes, Anthony Randolph is only averaging 3.8 RPG, but that is in the limited amount of playing time he has been given this year.
Already this year, he has put up solid rebounding totals of nine and seven, in only 28 and 10 minutes, respectively.
The Knicks current leading rebounder, Amar'e Stoudemire, averages 8.1 RPG in 35 minutes of play.
If Anthony Randolph were to play 35 minutes, he would be averaging a whopping 12.1 RPG, four more than Stoudemire.
For a Knicks team that sees themselves being out-rebounded nightly and quite frankly embarrassed on the boards some nights (Kevin Love's 31-31 performance), it wouldn't hurt to gain a few extra rebounds by playing Randolph and his 16.1 rebounds per 48 minutes more.
3.22 Blocks Per 48 Minutes
One of the surprising statistical improvements for the Knicks this year has been their blocks per game.
Through 12 games, the Knicks actually lead the NBA in team blocks with 7.8 per game.
Some say their added athleticism is the reason for the improvement in this category, but the Knicks defense has still struggled mightily, giving up 106.5 points per game.
In the team's last game, a victory over the Sacramento Kings, the team totaled an impressive 12 blocks. However, their big men got into foul trouble early and often.
At one point, all four of the Knicks big men, Amar'e Stoudemire, Ronny Turiaf, Timofey Mozgov and Wilson Chandler, had three or more fouls. This prevented them from staying aggressive, and as a result, the Kings were able to attack the rim more often.
Even on nights when the team's other big men are blocking shots, it would be of benefit to include Randolph in the rotation to allow the others to stay aggressive without fear of fouling out.
12.2 Points Per 48 Minutes
When Randolph is inserted into the lineup he tends to fill his short stint on the court with a bevy of bad shots and bad decisions.
He has been air-balling his shots more often than sinking them and this has caused him to lose his confidence quickly.
However, he has had success attacking the basket.
Randolph is one of those players who has a knack for scoring and his 12.2 points per 48 minutes actually undermines his full offensive capabilities.
If given more consistent playing time, Randolph would be able to take smarter shots and build his confidence without the fear of Coach Dantoni yanking him off the court because of one bad shot.
Timofey Mozgov Is Averaging 2.8 PPG and 2.2 RPG
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Timofey Mozgov, the Knicks starting center, has not been much better than Randolph in his starts for the Knicks.
Mozgov is averaging a dismal 2.8 PPG and 2.2 RPG.
He often receives more fouls than points scored and for that reason has only been able to average 13 minutes per game himself.
The way I see it, it wouldn't hurt starting Randolph at center, as their minutes per game are similar and Randolph's numbers and potential are far more impressive.
Wilson Chandler Does Not Play Like a 4
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Wilson Chandler, who has been having a phenomenal season as the Knicks' sixth man, is not quite suited to play the 4, at least right now.
Yes, he's averaging a career high 2.4 blocks per game.
However, Chandler hoists up five three-pointers per game, while only hitting 32 percent of them.
He invests too much time in his perimeter game, when he should be using his body and strength to attack the rim and grab offensive rebounds.
When Dantoni substitutes Chandler in for the center Mozgov, this forces Chandler to play at the 4, somewhere he is not currently suited for.
Until Chandler can learn to morph his game into a low-post threat, he should play small forward and allow Randolph to rotate as the fourth big man with Turiaf, Stoudemire and Mozgov.
This would hopefully put the Knicks' horrible interior defense at ease and provide more defensive rebounds.