New York Knicks big man Kyle O’Quinn told Basketball Insiders the team feels the playoffs are possible this season.
“When I saw the [offseason] moves, I was thinking, ‘Man, we’re really trying to make a push, we’re not trying to develop,'” O’Quinn told Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders. “I think this is one of the first teams I’ve been on where it’s pretty clear-cut that they went after guys who they think could help win now.
“In the past, it’s been, ‘Okay, we’ll give this guy a chance,’ or we were signing guys who were trying to find their way into the league. Now, I think if we stay healthy, everyone feels [the playoffs] are possible.”
Following a 32-50 season in which the Knicks missed the playoffs for a third consecutive season, O’Quinn is one of few reserve players — Lance Thomas and Sasha Vujacic, included — to remain on the Knicks roster this summer. New York’s hyperactive off-season also included contracts with Courtney Lee, Joakim Noah and Brandon Jennings.
“When I saw the moves, of course I was excited,” O’Quinn said. “Playing with Carmelo [Anthony] is exciting enough, but then you add guys like D-Rose and Joakim Noah and Courtney Lee? That’s so exciting. Now, we’ll just try to create a strong locker room with those guys and enjoy the process.”
O’Quinn averaged 4.8 points and 3.8 rebounds for the Knicks last season. His status as back-up big man will be tested this summer. New York added Willy Hernangomez, Marshall Plumlee and Mindaugas Kuzminskas to its front court this off-season.