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What’s next for Cam Reddish with the New York Knicks?

Cam Reddish Knicks

Following the New York Knicks trade for Cam Reddish last season, the narrative has been that Cam deserves more minutes. He never earned the minutes, but it makes sense. Why trade for someone you have no intention of playing?

Cam has always been a guy with tremendous potential. He continues to show flashes of stardom, but has never put it all together for a consistent stretch. At Duke, in Atlanta and now in New York – he has always shown glimpses of his potential. It is these flashes that keep him in the running for minutes on this Knicks team.

At what point do you need to show more than just a glimpse? This is where we are with Cam Reddish right now. The roster has continued to improve, minutes are not a given and Tom Thibodeau is not the coach to give them away for free. They must be earned.

As we get ready for the NBA season, we now have more clarity on the state of the Knicks roster, who is in the rotation and who is out of it. Cam looks out. Now, what does that mean for Cam? This is the question.

Cam Reddish Knicks trade details

On January 13, 2022, the Atlanta Hawks traded Cam Reddish to the New York Knicks for Kevin Knox and a protected first-round pick (via Charlotte). The complete trade included Kevin Knox II and a protected 2022 first-round draft pick via the Charlotte Hornets to the Hawks for Reddish, Solomon Hill and a 2025 second-round pick (via Brooklyn), per ESPN.

The key to the deal for the Hawks was the protected first round pick from Charlotte. Charlotte’s first-round pick is protected through the top 18 in 2022, the top 16 in 2023, and the top 14 in 2024 and 2025. It becomes two second-round picks if not conveyed before 2026.

Was it a good trade for the Knicks?

Without the first round pick, there is nothing in this deal for the Atlanta Hawks. Kevin Knox II, a former 9th pick, was out of the rotation with no signs of joining it any time soon. He was not the centrepiece of this deal – it was the pick.

For the Knicks, the centrepiece was Reddish. He was a guy that was buried on a roster that had a plethora of wings surrounding him. He found himself on the outside looking in, but still had shown flashes of his potential. It was this potential that prompted the Knicks to take a chance on a young guy that had a shot at earning meaningful minutes.

With all that said, it was certainly not a bad trade for the Knicks. The Knicks have 11 first round picks at their disposal in the next seven years, and the pick traded to Atlanta can only be as high as the 17th selection. This is a worth moving for a young guy that is buried on a roster, and, if given the minutes, could flourish. Even if Cam never steps foot on the floor in a Knicks uniform again, it’s hard to argue that the upside potential of this move wasn’t there.

Cam Reddish’s fit on the current Knicks roster

The Knicks roster has become surprisingly deep in recent times. As a result of this depth, it’s become increasingly difficult for Cam Reddish to make his case for more minutes.

At the shooting guard position, he sits behind Evan Fournier, Quentin Grimes and Immanuel Quickley. While at small forward, RJ Barrett holds the bulk of the minutes with Grimes sitting behind him on the depth chart.

Reddish has shown an ability to get to the rim, shoot the three and create his own shot. He can play off of others to take advantage of open shots. This has been the area that has drawn the most attention to his game. The uncanny ability to score in a variety of ways. Unfortunately, it is his consistency that fails to earn him favor with Thibodeau.

At the current time, there is no path forward for Cam to earn meaningful minutes on this team the way the roster is currently constructed. The New York Knicks have been open to the world about their admiration for Grimes. While the versatility of Quickley and his scoring ability, makes it difficult for Cam to sneak into the lineup.

The bulk of the minutes today will go to the starting unit. Derrick Rose will get his 15-20mins at point guard, Quickley 15-20mins at point/shooting guard and Quentin Grimes will see the remaining minutes at shooting guard and most of the backup minutes at small forward. This leaves only a handful of minutes remaining. The likely outcome for Reddish will be 5-8mins per game to make an impact.

Reddish has been unable to take advantage of his opportunities

Throughout Cam Reddish’s career, he has given just enough to show he has potential. One thing that has been consistent however, is that he fails to take advantage of his opportunities.

He appeared in 49 games last season, 15 with the Knicks. In those 15 games he averaged 14.3 minutes per game, shot 41.5% from the field on 4.3 shot attempts. He failed to make an impact on any other area of the stat sheet, per Basketball Reference.

Over his career, Reddish has a True Shooting percentage of 54.3%, placing him in the bottom third of the league, according to CraftedNBA. His shot selection has been questionable at best in his career. He is a below average defender by defensive rating and struggles to influence the game outside of his scoring. When he is not shooting well, he can struggle to be seen on the court.

Knicks 2022 preseason troubles

It was during this Knicks preseason that the writing for Reddish was on the wall. In the four preseason games, he averaged 15.75 mins, 2 rebounds, 1 assists and 4.25 points per game. In his best game against the Pacers, he scored 10 points in 21 minutes.

When you factor in that Grimes was not available for the first three preseason games, and the fact that the starters are seeing reduced minutes in preseason play, it becomes hard to see a path forward for Cam to get his minutes.

Cam Reddish four preseason games:

  1. vs Pistons: 11min, 1reb, 1ast, 3pts
  2. vs Pacers: 22min, 2reb, 2ast, 2pts
  3. vs Pacers: 21min, 3reb, 1ast, 10pts
  4. vs Wizards: 9mins, 2rebs, 0ast, 2pts

The case for trading Cam Reddish

Now with some background, the case for trading Cam Reddish begins to take shape. It is not that he no longer has potential, because he certainly does. The Knicks are now in a place where they must begin making roster decisions in favor of the talent that they believe has the best chance of success.

Given the Knicks were unwilling to move Grimes, it’s safe to say he is a core member of this New York Knicks team. You might say to reduce Quickley’s minutes, but he has earned his time on the court with his play and effort – Cam has not done this as yet.

It is hard to make the case to give Cam minutes when he has failed to give us a reason to. This is the same reason why he should not take minutes from the Knicks veteran players either. Evan Fournier and Derrick Rose each have valuable skillsets and are proven in this league.

Now that we see the difficulty for Cam breaking the lineup, we can now see the case for trading him. He is a player that is still viewed as a young prospect with potential. With his scoring ability, I believe he will still have some value around the league.

Since the Knicks are unlikely to find him minutes this season, his value will only fall. This does no favors for the Knicks or Reddish. Finding a home for him now will alleviate the burden to find him minutes, will clear space for Grimes and Quickley and will give the Knicks some kind of return after they spent a first round pick to acquire him.

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