New York Knicks guards Elfrid Payton, Dennis Smith Jr. will reportedly miss Sunday’s matchup with the Los Angeles Clippers.
Now, it’s being reported that a few Knicks will sit for the game as well. According to Ian Begley of SNY, New York has ruled out Elfrid Payton and Dennis Smith Jr. The former will be sidelined due to personal reasons, while the latter is still dealing with a strained left oblique.
Knicks say Elfrid Payton (personal reasons) and Dennis Smith Jr (strained left oblique) are out for Clippers game.
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) January 5, 2020
This will be Payton’s 18th missed game of the year already. He hasn’t produced the greatest numbers this season, only averaging 7.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, 6.1 assists, and 1.4 steals. Payton is putting these stats together on 39.7% shooting from the field and 26.5% from behind the arc. The veteran is averaging 24.2 minutes-per-game.
Smith Jr., on the other hand, will miss his 15th game of the year and fifth consecutive. The oblique setback has really been giving him issues as of late.
DSJ is struggling mightily this season, averaging just 5.2 points, 2.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 0.5 steals. He’s shooting 32.5% from the field and 29.3% from three.
Simply speaking, Smith Jr. isn’t producing like he did during his 21 games with the Knicks last year. After finding himself in the Kristaps Porzingis trade that sent him from Dallas to Manhattan, DSJ averaged 14.7 points, 2.8 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.3 steals.
The 14th-place Knicks will tip-off against the Clippers at 3:30 p.m. ET on Sunday at the Staples Center.