Tom Thibodeau is still torn between his offense and his defense

Tom Thibodeau started his adventure in New York perfectly. Recovering a largely unchanged group in the summer of 2020, he put his defensive leg on the line, moving the Knicks from 23rd to 4th in the field.

What to look for in the playoffs, in the Top 4 of the East, by breaking teeth on the Hawks of Trae Young.

The problem is that for the second season in a row, the “Thibs” are scrambling to find a better attack/defense balance. In 2020/21, New York certainly had the 4th defense, but also the 22nd attack. The franchise knows it needs to improve in this area, hence the summer hires of Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier.

The result at the start of the 2021/22 season was disastrous. Through mid-December, New York barely made any progress offensively (19th) and fell even further defensively (23rd). The firing of Kemba Walker and the adjustments of Tom Thibodeau improved the defense in the second half of the season (6th) but not the offense (24th).

The challenge is therefore the same for this season of 2022/23: maintaining defensive stability while improving offensively. This is still the goal of recruiting Jalen Brunson, and it’s still not conclusive.

It turns out to be trial and error

Because if the offense improves a bit (17th), the defense falls again (24th), like this embarrassing home defense against the Thunder by a Shai Gilgeous-Alexander that New York didn’t get in the 2018 Draft, preferring to bet two fronts. rows on a Kevin Knox who has since packed his bags. Games at such advanced times are usually difficult to judge, but Tom Thibodeau can only rail against his staff’s defense.

“Our defense is the problem” coach’s logical reaction. “We have to fix that. It will be hard to win if we don’t play a better defense. If we just try to outscore the opponent, it won’t work. Our margin of error is small. »

So the coach is also fumbling in the middle of the match, facing the limitations of the defense of Jalen Brunson, who is less dazzling than Kemba Walker but also has to pay, especially on a night when his first outside defender, RJ Barrett, was hired. a foul after a foul against Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

” It’s time [de s’asseoir] when you make a lot of mistakes. It fell to me because I was defending Shai, and the fouls stopped me. Not beautiful. I need to do a better job of not making mistakes”, confirmed the Canadian, who barely played in the second half. Like Jalen Brunson, who gets it. “I shouldn’t have been played either, given the way I was playing defensively. »

Tom Thibodeau explained that faced with disaster, and the accumulated delay, he was simple “want for life” outside the bank. “Little Spark” who did not survive the night.

It remains to be seen if this season he can save the balance that is being sought between his attack and his defense. For that, he’ll need more than Mitchell Robinson’s return. Undoubtedly a move to recover a solid “3&D”, capable of stabilizing the main five by taking care of the best opposing striker every night to release and let RJ Barrett breathe, because this is not the profile of ‘ Evan Fournier and Quentin Grimes don’t seem ready to take on this role at this point. A new Reggie Bullock in a way…

Shots Bounces
Players GM minimum Shots 3 points LF Off Def Early p.d bp Int CT party Points
Julius Randle 12 33.4 45.6 31.9 75.3 2.5 6.5 9.0 3.4 3.1 0.7 0.3 3.7 20.5
RJ Barrett 12 35.1 43.9 31.4 78.0 1.0 4.8 5.8 3.1 2.3 0.5 0.2 2.0 20.2
Jalen Brunson 12 33.5 48.9 30.6 85.2 0.4 3.3 3.8 6.8 1.7 1.0 0.2 2.4 19.8
Obi Toppin 12 18.0 46.5 38.5 100.0 0.9 3.2 4.1 1.2 0.9 0.7 0.3 0.9 10.1
Emmanuel Quickley 12 21.2 34.8 28.3 78.9 0.7 4.6 5.3 3.1 1.5 1.0 0.1 1.7 7.5
Evan Fournier 12 20.0 36.5 35.2 81.8 0.2 2.1 2.3 1.7 1.2 0.7 0.3 2.3 7.5
Isaiah Hartenstein 12 25.2 54.9 16.7 80.0 3.6 4.8 8.4 0.9 1.1 0.7 1.3 3.0 7.3
Cam blushed 12 20.4 40.8 32.4 81.8 0.3 1.5 1.8 1.0 0.7 0.4 0.4 1.8 6.8
Mitchell Robinson 8 21.8 69.7 0.0 42.9 3.5 2.9 6.4 1.0 0.6 0.4 2.3 3.6 6.5
Derrick Rose 12 13.0 37.3 34.4 100.0 0.3 1.6 1.9 2.0 1.1 0.4 0.2 0.6 6.2
Svi Mykhailiuk 3 2.0 100.0 100.0 0.0 0.0 0.7 0.7 0.0 0.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 3.0
Quentin Grimes 4 8.0 42.9 33.3 100.0 0.3 0.5 0.8 0.5 0.5 0.0 0.3 1.5 2.5
jericho sims 7 8.9 100.0 0.0 50.0 1.0 1.3 2.3 0.0 0.3 0.1 0.9 1.9 2.1
Ryan Arcidiacono 3 2.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.7 0.7 0.3 0.0 0.3 0.0 0.3 0.0
Trevor Keels 1 1.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 1.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Miles Mcbride 4 2.6 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.5 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.3 0.0

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