Evan Fournier embodies the Knicks’ bigger games in the early season

In the search for the diagnosis for the Sick Knicks, there are plenty of symptoms to be found at the offensive end.

They have on average only achieved 97.8 points per. match in their last five games, which would have been played Friday as the worst in the NBA as an overall season. Their failure rate has dropped and notched 14 per. fight through this streak after reaching the line 23 times per. competition in their first 11 matches. They shoot worse, there are questions regarding each starter – even RJ Barrett has quietly taken a step back – and a feel-good Knicks season could feel bad in a hurry, especially in the deep east.

But if there is a face of disappointment for a team that has lost four out of six, one that sums up the offensive matches, it is a player who no longer even sees the pitch late in the matches.

Evan Fournier was brought in to play a good defense, sink a lot of jump shots and be an improvement over Reggie Bullock, who was stable at the Knicks last year and fit well with the new star Julius Randle.

Evan Fournier embodies the Knicks’ bigger games in the early season
Evan Fournier is shooting just 35 percent behind the arc this season.
Jason Coal

The first glance was a beauty as Fournier rolled in with 32 points in the opening night thriller over the Celtics. But his shots have disappeared since, and he has disappeared in the fourth quarter of the last four games, including Wednesday’s downturn to the Magic, where he was subjected halfway through the third and never came in again.

“Very inconsistent, of course,” Fournier told the Knicks’ training session Friday about his own start to the season. “A bit like what we’ve done as a team, to be honest.

“We have had really good matches. We have had bad matches [15] games you’ve already seen my best and worst. ”

More of the latter as his 41.3 percent from 3 last year has dropped to 35.1 percent in this campaign. Particularly troublesome has been his fit in the starting lineup along with Randle, both long-term pieces for the Knicks contractually. The Kemba Walker-Fournier-Barrett-Randle-Mitchell Robinson unit has been 88 points worse than its opponent.

The ball has not moved, Randle has had a hard time and Fournier has been an afterthought with few chances and fewer chances that have been exploited.

The Frenchman and Knicks believe the chemistry will come with more time.

“I think after 15 games last season, no one said Julius and Reggie had good chemistry,” coach Tom Thibodeau said before the Knicks (8-7) hosted the Rockets on Saturday.

And speaking of time, Fournier needs to make more money from it.

Evan Fournier believes his chemistry with Julius Randle will get better over the course of the season.
Evan Fournier believes his chemistry with Julius Randle will improve over the course of the season.
NY Post: Charles Wenzelberg

“As I look at it, I can not just play like I did with other teams, knowing that I would play at least 32 minutes,” said the 10-year-old pro, who received several minutes with Orlando and Boston last year. “I know where my shots are coming from, I know how it’s going to go for me. So I can get into the game by knowing that.

“I think the situation right now is that I do not know how many minutes I have to play, so I have to have that mindset: If I have to play 20 minutes, then just get out of the gate with extreme energy . To be very attentive. To be ultra-aggressive. And trying to make an impact. ”

He pointed out that he has historically been a player in the fourth quarter, and the statistics support that. The longer he plays in a game, the better he has been. In minutes 30-39 of his playing time, he has shot 45.3 percent from the field, which is only surpassed by his shot percentage after 40 minutes (48.4).

But if he can not be aggressive enough and successful enough early, these late game moments do not exist.

The Knicks wanted more from a shooting guard / attacker signed to a $ 78 million four-year pact, which now averages 12.2 points. In 2019-20 with Magic, that number was 18.5.

He is not the only symptom for a team that has lost four of six. Thibodeau mentioned the Knicks’ recent struggles to get to the line, as officials have swallowed several calls and a need to adapt to the changing game. They have been too sloppy with the ball and have shot worse as the season has progressed.

But a hot Fournier would soothe plenty of the pain.

“We’re not worried about that. Evan, he’s a shooter. He’s a great playmaker. Can put the ball on the floor,” said Derrick Rose, who is used to getting used to Thibodeau offenses. “I think that we just have to emphasize that Evan can get an open look so he can get a groove going. “

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