Basketball is a game of runs
After shocking everybody and finishing fourth in the East last year to snap their eight-year playoff drought, the Knicks had hoped their offseason acquisitions of Kemba Walker and Evan Fournier would take them to the next level. So far, though, it hasn’t worked out like that.
Walker not only lost his starting point guard job, he found himself removed from the rotation completely and hasn’t played in New York’s last six games. Fournier has started all 25 games this year, but he might be next in joining Walker on the bench. He’s averaging 12.8 points per game, his fewest since his third season in the league, when he was only a part-time starter. His assists per game and shooting percentage are also down considerably from last year.
Fournier was particularly underwhelming in Wednesday night’s 122–102 loss to the Pacers. He finished with seven points on 2-of-6 shooting with four rebounds, one assist and four fouls in 22 minutes. He laid another egg the night before in the Knicks’ win over the Spurs (seven points on 3-of-8 shooting, including 1-of-6 from three, three rebounds and one assist in 21 minutes). But he has an explanation.
“I thought I was doing better, to be honest, before those two games,” Fournier told reporters. “I’m not gonna tell you the name of the restaurant, but I had a terrible steak in San Antonio. I’ve been fighting like I had food poisoning stuff. I can’t move.
“I have to get right tomorrow. I have a day off tomorrow to feel better. I thought I was playing better and better, to be honest. You just have to feel better physically. It’s a shame because the steak was actually very good. It’s the next day where it messed me up.”
Fournier isn’t the only Knicks player to suffer from gastrointestinal distress in recent weeks. RJ Barrett said after Tuesday night’s game in San Antonio that he had dealt with a stomach bug for about two weeks. The same ailment also struck Mitchell Robinson and Jericho Sims. The Knicks have lost four out of their last five, but it sounds like they can turn things around if they just start passing out Pepto Bismol on the bench.
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