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Knicks Opening Night: SNY’s Jake Brown 3 Things to Watch For

KP and and the new look Knicks take on the Big 3 of the Thunder, including Melo

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Brown Has Next

The homie, Jake Brown of ‘Jake Brown Radio’ wears a lot of hats. Aside from his podcast duties that are a must listen, he is also one of the newest Knicks writers for the SNY’s family of blogs. Brown previews tonight’s Knicks opener against the Thunder. Make sure to follow Brown’s posts throughout the season.

KP vs. Melo

The end of the Knicks’ 2016-17 season was also the end of the Carmelo Anthony era at the Garden. Coincidentally, the Knicks face off tonight against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Melo’s new team. Kristoff Porzingis is now the main guy in New York and will face off against the Big 3 of MVP Russell Westbrook, Paul George, and Carmelo Anthony. FTS are die-hard Knicks fans but New York’s core of KP, returning SG Tim Hardaway Jr., and rookie PG Frank Ntilikina is going to have a hard time against the Thunder.

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Enes Kanter against his former team

Brown notes, “Kanter will play his former team and go up against his old pal, Steven Adams. With Porzingis taking on Melo, Kanter is going to be important for the Knicks on the glass. We know Kanter can score in bunches, but the Knicks need him to stay out of foul trouble and put up double-doubles.”

Our impression of Kanter has been mixed. He has shown an ability to score in bunches, but for a player his size, he doesn’t defend the rim well. It was one of the reasons that Kanter was a bench player with the Thunder. He couldn’t unseat Steven Adams, even though OKC was desperate for an additional scorer last season. From the games and highlights FTS has seen so far, the Knicks have a long way to go with defending the ball. Kanter needs to improve.

Ntilikina vs. Westbrook

“Rookie Frank Ntilikina did not play much in the preseason due to injuries. He gets the joy of opening the season covering the defending NBA MVP and triple-double machine Russell Westbrook,” wrote Brown. “It doesn’t get any tougher for Ntilikina to get his NBA career going. Although Ntilikina may come off the bench, he’ll likely see Westbrook at points of this game.”

FTS wants to be optimistic about this 19-year old PG from France, but he’s only played in two games during the preseason. Plus, keep this in mind. The Knicks (under Phil Jackson) passed on explosive Tar Heels PG Dennis Smith Jr. for Ntilikina. We will be watching.

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