New York Knicks: Joakim Noah To Start; Courtney Lee Out (Update)
Dec 2, 2016; New York, NY, USA; New York Knicks injured players shooting guard Courtney Lee (left) and center Joakim Noah watch from the bench during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks are ready to take on the San Antonio Spurs while Kristaps Porzingis is proclaiming he wants to be “the” man.

  • New York Knicks (27-45)
  • San Antonio Spurs (55-16)
  • NBA, Sat., Mar. 25, 8:30 p.m. ET, MSG Network
  • AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas

There was an off day for the New York Knicks, but they are getting ready to play the San Antonio Spurs, the number two team in the Western Conference. Last time the Knicks played San Antonio they came away with a hard-fought win. (Yes, it really happened.) Tip-off is set for 8:30 p.m. ET.

Derrick Rose (foot) and Carmelo Anthony (sore thigh) were unavailable to play on Thursday because of minor injuries, but both players sound optimistic that they’ll play tonight.

More sad news on the unavailable front comes in the form of Joakim Noah as The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski has reported that the Knickerbockers oft-injured center has been suspended for 20 games via violation of the league’s anti-drug policy.

Kristaps Porzingis spoke Marc Berman of the New York Post about him wanting to be that “go to guy” during the game. At the same time, he did admit there’s room for improvement.

“I’m trying to learn how to be the guy,’’ Porzingis said, “how to be the focal point or make a play or create a shot for myself. I’m still working on that, still, have a lot to learn. As I keep growing as a player, I have to learn and be better at it.”

Porzingis said he was disappointed in himself for the past two games because he let the big guys run over him. On the offensive side, he felt like he could have added a few more baskets. Playing without Melo and Rose, he wanted to show the world that he can win ball games. However, that ended quickly. Porzingis scored 18 points but was 8-for-21 from the floor.

“I felt comfortable out there; I felt good out there. I just missed shots — that’s the disappointment. Honestly, I’m thinking about going to the gym right now, [Saturday] when we get to San Antonio. That’s the only thing in my head. It’s so disappointing. Maybe I’ll look at the video and won’t be that bad, but right now it feels with not making those shots, I felt I let the team down.”

Porzingis feels like he has so much to learn and there’s a lot in store for him down the stretch. He wants the fans to be patient with him as he develops into one of the best big men in the game.

“There’s so much to learn,’’ Porzingis said. “Every time I watch myself play, there’s always something I feel I could do better — not this move, (but) I should’ve done another move. I’m trying to find what type of player I’ll be.’’

Other than what’s happening on the hardwood, former five-time champion Ron Harper said Rose would never win a ring no matter which team he goes to.

ESNY’s Robbie Stratakos dove in about why New York should start Ron Baker and Chasson Randle in the backcourt for the rest of the season.

ESNY’s Chip Murphy talks about how the team will bring the triangle back next year, but Porzingis, Rose and Melo might not be back.

The New York Knicks are only one game back from the fourth worse team in the NBA. That’s bad, but for New York, that’s a good thing. The Knicks will have a lottery this year and facing the elite teams is just what the doctor ordered at the end of the season for the Knickerbockers. New York has their eyes on Malik Monk and Lonzo Ball. Our very own ESNY’s Chip Murphy went in detailed on why some future picks will fit the New York style of basketball.

19 Years Old, from Chicago, IL. NBA writer for EliteSportsNY and RealBallInsider. MLB writer for ROBaseball. Sports Writer for The Communicator Newspaper. Co-Host on Sports Show "SportsSanity"