New York Knicks guard Justin Holiday was happy he didn’t find out about being traded on Twitter. He also doesn’t want to miss any threes.
He was just glad he didn’t find out about the deal on Twitter.
“My GM called me. Gar [Forman] called me in Chicago and told me. I guess that’s usually how you find out,” Holiday told Elite Sports NY. “It wasn’t a social media find out. But they called me first, right away. I had no clue, but you get to come to New York and play. How many people get that opportunity?”
“With it being the second time I was traded, I mean at the time I was shocked because I didn’t know anything about it. But it was like, ‘Ok, we’re going to a new spot. Let’s see what we can do with it.'”
But the 27-year-old guard out of Washington says he’s played with a chip on his shoulder long before this trade.
“That’s how I’ve been ever since I’ve gotten to this league. That trade didn’t make that all of the sudden happen,” Holiday said. “I always feel like I have something to prove regardless of what contract you get, regardless of what has happened in the past, I always have that chip because it was a different route for me to get here.”
Holiday played alongside Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas as a senior at Washington before going undrafted in 2011. He opted to play a year overseas in Belgium, then signed with the Idaho Stampede in the NBA D-League.
The 6-foot-6 guard bounced around before sticking with the Golden State Warriors team that won a championship in 2015.
Now with New York on a hard to earn guaranteed contract, Holiday has worked to find his impact on the team. His 13 points in the team’s 119-107 Saturday loss to Boston was his high for the pre-season.
Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said it was good to see the young guard find some rhythm on the court.
“It’s always tough on guys that are gonna come on off the bench. Sometimes they press a little bit too much, they want to make too many things happen instead of just letting the game flow,” Hornacek said after the team’s loss to Boston. “He just needed to see a couple shots drop. It’s good to see that first one; someone made a nice kick-out pass to him in the corner. He got an open look.”
On that play, you could see Holiday’s cheek-to-cheek grin following his corner triple as he ran back on defense. Later in the game, he made a defender pay for going under a screen by drilling a deep, contested three.
Holiday is a career .326 three-point shooter but is looking to build on last year’s 27-game Bulls stint where he shot .433 from downtown.
“I always continue to make sure I work on my shot,” he told Elite Sports NY. “Ball handling, strength and that shot, make sure I get comfortable shooting different ways. Stay comfortable shooting different ways and just get as consistent as possible to where I just don’t miss at all.”
On defense, Holiday says he hates getting scored on. So his mentality “is to do whatever I can do get a stop and do what I can to help the next player.”
Hornacek acknowledged his defensive effort and believes he can be valuable if he can be equally effective on offense.
“Defensively, he’s always in to help, he’s scrambling out, he’s long, he can get out there,” he said. “So when he has that combination where he can guard and then knock down the shots, it’s a good thing to have.”