At Knicks Film School, we want to help other brands grow. As part of that, we will feature articles from Knicks sites around the world to help give them exposure to a new audience. Today we highlight the freshly launched Knicks Nation Germany Austria!
Knicks Nation Germany Austria – who are these guys?
Knicks Nation Germany Austria is the first official Knicks fan club in the German speaking countries of Germany, Austria and Switzerland. The club was founded in September 2017. The club brings together Knicks fans from three different countries. The Club also has international members from the U.S. and France.
Visit the site that launched yesterday after checking out the sample article below!
KNICKS SEASON PREVIEW FROM KNICKS NATION GERMANY AUSTRIA
By Thorsten Andratschke / Twitter: @ThortschMann
Each new season means new hope, new ambition, and new frustration. But this time feels different. The 2018-19 season, for whatever reason, feels special.
Is it because of the new coach? Is it because of the already emerging rumors about Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving or Jimmy Butler joining the Knicks? There is a lot to look forward to as a Knicks fan, so let’s take a look at what the fans from Knicks Nation Germany Austria are excited about.
THE YOUNG PLAYERS
“I’m really excited how the young guns will play and how they develope in the 18/19 season. Building a team and smart coaching will be the keys.” [Holger / Deutschland]
“I’m really looking forward to see Knicks basketball. I want to see the young players beiing fired up to play for the Knicks … I just want to see the Knicks developing.” [André / Germany]
“We now have a young and talented group, with a lot of Potential to grow. Some of them (KP6, FortKnox) could become the next Stars of the League (NBA). So the Future shines bright again for the Knicks and hopefully we will see again some Championships in New York like in the good old days (70` & 73`)!” [Christopher / Austria]
With Kevin Knox (19), Mitchell Robinson (20), Frank Ntilikina (20), Emmanuel Mudiay (22), Allonzo Trier (22), Noah Vonleh (22), Kristaps Porzingis (23), Luke Kornet (23) and Mario Hezonja (23), the Knicks have eight players on their roster who are 23 or younger. Isaiah Hicks and Damyean Dotson are just 24, Trey Burke and Ron Baker just 25. It will be very interesting to see how Fizdale will deploy these young players. While Knox, Ntilikina, Burke and Hezonja are strong candidates for a starting role, players like Mudiay, Dotson, Trier, Baker, Hicks, Kornet and Vonleh first have to prove that they can be part of the rotation.
Mudiay had tough years in Denver and looked insecure and out of shape in his few games with the Knicks so far. This season is gonna be significant for Mudiay and his future NBA career. Though Mudiay had a tough preseason, you can’t give up on him yet.
Kornet, in contrast, had some really good moments in a Knicks jersey last season. The 7-foot center has all it takes to be a role player in the modern NBA. He is a good three-point- shooter, can stretch the floor and he is a solid shot blocker on defense.
Damyean Dotson is another very intriguing young player to keep an eye on. Like Ntilikina, he had an up and down rookie season. The highlight: in April, he scored a career high 30 points and 11 rebounds against the Miami Heat. This very promising performance which gives reason for hope for his second NBA season.
After a tough season under recently fired coach, Jeff Hornacek, where young players had to fight for every minute, Knicks fans are understandably very excited to see Fizdale unleash the youngsters. They will be fun to watch though they’ll obviously make mistakes and still need time to grow.
THE MICHIGAN SQUAD
“Imma excited whos gonna be our starting-backcourt. My dream would come true if the Michigan Squad, THJ and TB, will fill the spots. TB23 s gonna rock the pg-spot….until Kyrie Irving comes to Gotham City!” [Daniel H. / Germany]
The Knicks front office had high hopes for Tim Hardaway Jr. when they offered him a four- year, $71 million-contract. And he still hasn`t fully lived up to this expectations. Though Hardaway Jr. missed 25 games due to a stress injury to his left leg, he played a solid season. He had a carrer year in minutes (33.1), rebounds (2.8), assists (2.7), steals (1.1) and points (17.5) per game – plus a career-high 39 points in a 108–104 loss to the Timberwolves. Still Knicks fans feel he has the ability to be a star player in the league. But there is still room to grow – especially on defense.
Trey Burke, meanwhile, had a prototypical New York kind of Cinderella story last year. After choosing to revive his career with the Westchester Knicks, he had quite impressive games with the Knicks. He scored a career-high 42 points and 12 assists against the Hornets and became the first Knick to have a 40+ point and 10+ assist game since Stephon Marbury in 2005. Can he be the future starting point guard the Knicks are desperately longing for? Well, not only his hair style reminds Knicks fans of Allen Iverson … Although he struggled a bit in preseason, he might get the starting poing guard job at the beginning of the season.
While Hardaway Jr. has the best chance to be the Knicks starting shooting guard, the starting point guard spot is still vacant. Why not Burke? He is clearly the most gifted offensive point guard on the team. Surely, he can score, and his playmaking and passing abilities are admittedly underrated. However, like Hardaway Jr., the big “IF” lies on the other side of the ball. Can he be consistent on defense?
The two former Michigan wolverines Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. could truly build a phenomenal offensive duo – but can they coexist on defense? Will Tim play the t3? Tough questions for Coach Fizdale …
THE FRENCH PRINCE
“I am definitely the biggest Frank Ntilikina / French Prince / MY BOY fan out there. For me, he is an absolute part of our future. And if he improves his offense, he could become one of the most versatile players on the hardwood. I see in him a great future. Maybe a Giannis Typ of player.” [Daniel J./ Germany]
The Knicks‘ 2017 lottery pick Frank Ntilikina splits the Knicks fan base into two halves: on the one side, people think he is overrated, offensively limited and not more than a role-player; on the other side, Knicks fans feel Frank can become a unique (point-) guard with a rare skillset.
Though Ntilikina had a rollercoaster rookie season (let’s not talk about Hornacek here!), one could easily recognize what an impact Frank can have on the Knicks team. Defensively he is a DPOY-type-of-player. He does not need to be afraid of any star point guard in the league – ask Kyrie! He can easily guard three positions and he even managed to block centers last season.
But what’s his offensive ceiling? He showed flashes of playmaking, three point shooting, penetration and high-basketball-IQ-plays. But he needs to show it frequently – night in and night out. Can he put down his timidity and be an agressive player? Is he a point guard, a two guard or even a three? He showed some great improvement in summer league where he had a “good” and a “very good” game.
Knicks fans have every reason to be pumped about Ntilikina. If he can utilize all his talent, he can be a pest defensively and a constant mismatch offensively. He got one start in preseason and had a very solid first half until he got in foul trouble in the second half. Frank Ntilikina remains the most enigmatic player on the Knicks roster.
“I‘m excited, how Mitchell Robinson can develope his game, because he has a stroh upside on both ends on the field, for example his defense or his athleticism. He could be the steal of the draft and our future Center.” [Stiebi / Germany]
Mitchell Robinson might be the most intriguing second round pick of the Knicks history. So it is more than reasonable that Knicks fans are fired up to see him play in the NBA. He might have been a top ten pick in this years draft had he played in College last season. His summer league performance was thrilling: 13.0 points and 10.2 rebounds in 24.7 minutes per game – plus 4.0 blocks, which are the most blocks per games ever recorded in summer league. Admittedly he’s still vey raw but he might become the steal of the draft. Knicks fans already dream of a Mitchell Robinson-Kristaps Porzingis-big man duo! As Fizdale pointed out in Pre- Season, Robinson will play a some games with the Westchester Knicks, especially at the beginning of the season, but one thing is sure: when he steps on the court for the Knicks the Garden will be on fire!
“I’m looking forward to see the veterans and their leadership. Lance, Enes and Timi have to take responsibility on and off the court and guide the Baby-Knicks through a difficult season.” [Jörg / Germany]
This is a very underrated point. Though the Knicks have an intriguingy young team, they still need veterans to lead them. Don’t underestimate the influence Jarret Jack had on the team last year. Who will lead the team this season? Considering Courtney Lee‘s and Noah’s future remains uncertain, Lance Thomas, Enes Kanter and Tim Hardaway Jr. might do this job. Lance Thomas has been a great teammate off the court for years. Since Carmelo Anthony is gone he has even more become the leader of the pack. He will fill out that role next season – no question! Fizdale already backed Thomas by giving him the starting power forward job in Pre-Season, but will he see constant minutes? Can he lead the team on the court? Kanter and Hardaway will certainly see those minutes – but can they step up and fill in the void Jarret Jack has left? We will see …
“For me, the most enticing thing about next season is, to see, how our young core (Frank, Trey, Knox, Mitchell, Dame, Porzingis after injury) will develop under our new coaching staff and how they will fit into the style of play, Fiz wants to implement in the Knicks’ offense and defense moving forward. Also the on- an off the court chemistry between the Knicks’ young roster and the coaching staff will be an interesting thing to see next year.” [Marcus / Germany]
“I want to see my Knicks growing and developing next Season. Coach Fiz has to prove, that he can build a squad which can compete.” [Ben / Germany]
“I’m totaly excited to see the young players grow as a team as well as individuals. I think with Fizdale we have a coach that leads them to be the best players and the best team they can be.” [Lukas / Germany]
David Fizdale is the first head coach Steve Mills and Scott Perry hired in their tenure with the Knicks. Mills and Perry met with several candidates prior to agreeing to terms with Fizdale. Fizdale last coached the Memphis Grizzlies and had his difficulties with star player Marc Gasol. Nonetheless Fizdale has one of the best reputations in the league. Mainly because of his time with the Miami Heat. He is said of having a close relationship to his players, something his predecessor Jeff Hornacek really lacked. At his first press conference at MSG he already expressed his basketball philosophy: positionless basketball. Knicks Fans will be really excited about how he will put his ideas in effect on the court.. With Ntilikina, Hezonja, Knox or Porzingis he has some very versatile players. But how soon can we see his system work with this young team. How can he help Mudiay, Hezonja or Burke revive their NBA- carreers? How big is his impact on young players like Knox, Ntilikina or Robinson. Can he turn Kanter or Hardaway Jr. into star players? Big tasks fort he coach, and it definetely will take some time, but Knicks Fans are completely right believing in Fizdale. He might be the most intriguing coacht he Knicks have since Mike D’Antoni.
THE LONDON GAME
“There are two things I’m exicted about the upcoming season. First one is the comeback of KP, hopefully at the Xmas-Game or at the game in London. And the most exciting thing for me is the NYKNGA trip to the London game. We’ll join the game with about 50 of our guys and I’m so exicted to get to know every one of them personally. We will rock you London!” [Joe / Austria]
“I’m really looking forward to be at our game in London with our Fanclub to collectlively support our Knicks!” [Marco / Germany]
As soon as it was clear that the Knicks would play a NBA-game in London the Knicks Nation went absolutely nuts. Some of us already had been there in January 2013, when the Knicks played against the Detroit Pistons. 2018 it will be the first game the Knicks Nation Germany Austria will attend as a group. Words can‘t describe how pumped we are to be there. So for every Knicks fan who will be at the game, look out for us, we would love to meet you!
NEW FUTURE / OLD GLORY?
“I truly wish to see my Knicks back in their old glory. Young players like Knox and Robinson with their strength and absolute will to compete let me feel confident for the development of the best franchise in the world. Go Knicks!” [Ruben / Germany]
This wish might be a bit overhasty, but in fact the Knicks appear to be on the right track since Scott Perry is on board. They still have all their draft picks, no thoughtless trades have been made, and the Knicks will have cap space for at least one max deal next summer. The Knicks are rebuilduing and the future might actually seems bright in New York City. Is this the beginning of a new era? No one knows – but for the first time in years we might be seeing the dawning of a new Knicks era.
Author: Thorsten Andratschke / Twitter: @ThortschMann
Knicks Nation Germany/Austria: