Tom Thibodeau gives false hope about Knicks rookie Miles McBride
The only thing that the New York Knicks fans that were at Madison Square Garden on Sunday got to enjoy in the 108-93 loss to Utah was getting to see Donovan Mitchell play. It seems fitting that amidst the bad, Knicks rookie Miles McBride played in a total of three minutes.
New York is currently 30-41 and in 12th place in the East, five games back from the No. 10 play-in tournament spot. After Friday’s win over the Wizards, the Knicks were four games back from the No. 10 seed. However, now, New York has an 0.3% chance of making the playoffs.
With 11 games left to play in the regular season, it’s clear that the Knicks won’t get to enjoy making it to the postseason for the second-consecutive year. The focus has been shifted to the future.
Who’s part of that future? McBride. Fans have been screaming for Tom Thibodeau to play the 2021 second-round pick, but McBride’s minutes only briefly increased while Quentin Grimes was injured.
Before the matchup on Sunday, Thibodeau said “we’ll see” in response to McBride receiving more playing time over the remaining three weeks of the year. That wasn’t all he had to say, though.
Tom Thibodeau compliments New York Knicks rookie Miles McBride.
Thibodeau’s preference of playing veteran players over younger players is nothing new, although it’s backfired against players like McBride. Nonetheless, the coach still sees value in the 21-year-old.
“We’ll see,’’ Thibodeau said. “I love what ‘Deuce’ has done. We’ll try to figure out how to work that out. He’ll probably be going back and forth. He’s done a really good job. We’ll see how this unfolds.’’
That isn’t the first time that he’s said “we’ll see.” At this point, Thibodeau desperately needs to be giving his younger players more run.
Of course, players need to earn their minutes, but Thibodeau’s been misusing the current starting point guard. Alec Burks isn’t the point guard of the future, nor should he be the point guard of the present, but Thibodeau won’t increase McBride’s minutes (unless he has to do so because of an injury).
McBride’s proven himself in the G League with the Westchester Knicks and while that’s obviously different from suiting up for New York at Madison Square Garden, I’m not sure what else he needs to do to guarantee more time on the court.
Thibodeau’s quote on McBride might sound promising, but not promising enough for fans to expect to consistently see the guard on the floor over the next 20 days.
The Knicks are still in search of their star point guard and McBride’s average of 8.6 minutes in the 31 games that he’s played in isn’t a large enough sample size to tell if he can fill that role or not.
If New York doesn’t land a point guard via the draft, a trade, or free agency, will fans get to see more of McBride next year? As long as Thibodeau’s at the helm, don’t count on it.