The New York Knicks are without the services of their star guard RJ Barrett for the foreseeable future due to a late-game injury.
In a recent loss, Barrett found himself on the court in the closing minutes of a game where there were no hopes of a comeback. He ended up leaving the game with an ankle injury and he hasn’t seen the floor since.
Injuries can happen at any point in time, so it might be unfair to point fingers here, but a lot of fans have lumped this injury on Tom Thibodeau. Even the New York Post’s Marc Berman has placed the blame of Thibodeau, and he also confirmed Barrett will miss time through the All-Star Break.
RJ Barrett out until after the All-Star Break as he needs more time after ankle sprain caused by being left in the game by Tom Thibodeau with 18 seconds left,” he said. “Nerlens Noel also out with his usual knee soreness. RJ didn’t miss a game all last season. This will be his 4th straight.”
Is Barrett Okay?
Since the loss to the Nuggets, Barrett hasn’t seen the court and it has led some to think that his injury might be more serious than previously thought.
As of right now, he’s considered to be day-to-day and there was some optimism he could’ve been ready for the big showdown against the Brooklyn Nets.
With him missing that game, he’ll now have plenty of time to recover as the next Knicks game will be February 25 the Miami Heat, a game that will be nationally televised on ESPN.
Barrett will more than likely be all healed up by then, and if he’s not then there will definitely be a lot of cause for concern. The Knicks have been struggling without their star, going 1-2 without him, but the team has been having plenty of issues even with him in the lineup.
Julius Randle has flashed very encouraging signs as of late, but it hasn’t resulted in a winning product.
How do the Knicks Rebuild?
The Knicks will have to rely on their young stars to dig their way out of this hole, whether it’s this season or in the next.
Players like Miles McBride and Quentin Grimes will need to get more playing time, and fans have been calling for McBride a lot more as of late.
He’s been tearing it up in the G-League, but he doesn’t see any minutes once he’s called back up to the Knicks. It’s clear that he has some talent that could be on display at the Garden, but Thibodeau hasn’t exactly given him many opportunities to prove it as of yet.
As the Knicks slip further out of the playoff picture, he might find himself with no choice but to give the youngsters some run. There’s no sense in sitting on what could be a vital building block, but Thibodeau has shown he likes to give his veterans the playing time.
Taj Gibson played more minutes than Obi Toppin and Cam Reddish in the loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder.