Those who wish to see more young, homegrown talent showcased in the New York Knicks' lineup might get their wish Quickley ... literally and figuratively.
Some panicked when Immanuel Quickley's name was included in the Donovan Mitchell discussions. With Mitchell's future settled in Cleveland, Quickley could have a major opportunity headed his way, even in head coach Tom Thibodeau's notoriously difficult-to-crack NBA lineups.
That's what sources have told SNY's Ian Begley, who has declared that "there is an expectation" that Quickley takes on "an increased role early on in 2022-23." With veteran competition Alec Burks and Kemba Walker dealt away via cap-creating trades, Quickley has a chance to slide in behind the eventual endgame of those deals, newly-minuted $104 million man Jalen Brunson.
Quickley endeared himself to Knicks fans with a strong freshman season that landed him Second Team All-Rookie honors from the Association after some lampooned the Knicks' decision to make him a first-round pick in 2020. He has averaged 11.4 points and 2.8 assists in primarily a reserve role, though he struggled to stack minutes in the veteran-laden lineups preferred by Thibodeau.
Begley's outlook for Quickley is far more optimistic than some of his metropolitan contemporaries: fellow 2020 first-rounder Obi Toppin, for example, may find it hard to take away minutes from the new post core of Isaiah Hartenstein, Julius Randle, and Mitchell Robinson. But Quickley appears to be capitalizing on the momentum built at the end of last season. He played at least 20 minutes in each of the Knicks' final 21 games, averaging 16.4 points and 5.4 rebounds in that span. The highlight was a career-best 34-point showing to end the season against playoff-bound Toronto.
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Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags