More New York Knicks Lineup Changes Possible: Still ‘Mulling It Over’

new york knicks lineup changes

Getty Obi Toppin, Evan Fournier and Julius Randle.

The New York Knicks got off to a hot start this season but they now find themselves sitting under .500 for the first time this season.

It might be too early to hit the panic button, but things aren’t exactly looking great for the team as they recently made the decision to completely remove Kemba Walker from the lineup.

Going from a starter to out of the rotation is a tough pill to swallow, especially for somebody who’s as talented as Walker, but the writing was on the wall for a while.

Replacing him in the starting lineup is Alec Burks, but it appears that even that change isn’t set in stone. It also doesn’t help that the team has continued to struggle even with this change.

Before Tuesday’s game against the San Antonio Spurs, coach Tom Thibodeau said there’s a chance that even more changes could happen.


More Changes Incoming?

Thibodeau told reporters that the team could make some more changes before the Spurs game, saying he wants to mull things over according to SNY’s Ian Begley.

The most obvious change would be moving Alec Burks back to the bench and starting Derrick Rose instead, but that might not be what Thibs decides to do.

Fans have seen that Obi Toppin and Julius Randle play well together, so a potential change could be moving Mitchell Robinson to the bench and starting Toppin in his place. This change would give up a lot defensively, but it’d give the team some more high-flying athleticism and allow them to play at a quicker pace.

Speaking to reporters, Thibodeau went more in depth about lineup changes.

“If the intensity’s right and the execution’s not right and it’s not working, then you change [the rotation],” Thibodeau said via the New York Daily News. “So those are the two things, when you look at decision-making. And then you gather more information. Sometimes, if a decision’s not right, then you make another decision. You gather the information, study it and you look at it objectively. …If we’re not performing well, look, there may be more changes coming.”


Still a Lot of Season to Go

Kemba Walker Tom Thibodeau Knicks

GettyNew York Knicks guard Kemba Walker on the floor during a game against the Philadelphia 76ers.

While Thibodeau might not feel that teams need a lot of time to build chemistry, that might not be the case.

Constantly changing the lineup around won’t be a good thing if the guys can never get into a groove together. The reality is that there’s not really a ton of changes that can be made to make another starting lineup.

Julius Randle and Evan Fournier appear to be definite locks due to their contracts, RJ Barrett is one of the team’s best scorers despite his struggles, so he’s also likely to stay.

This leaves the center and point guard positions as the most likely changes. Perhaps Immanuel Quickley could anchor the point guard spot as a potential change. The offense already runs through Randle, so it’s not really necessary for a ball-handling guard to play the position.

There’s still a lot of time left for the team to figure things out, but they’ll want to do it fast before they slide all the way out of contention.

READ NEXT: Analyst Dunks on Knicks Over Kemba Walker Decision


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