With COVID and injuries still wreaking havoc on their roster, the Knicks found reinforcements on Monday via trade, a hardship signing and clearing their own players out of the NBA’s health and safety protocols.
The Knicks announced that Mitchell Robinson and Jericho Sims cleared health and safety protocols and have rejoined the team. Robinson missed only one game under the NBA’s newly adopted conditions for reinstatement.
The Knicks still have two players in health and safety protocols in Julius Randle and Nerlens Noel. Kemba Walker is expected to miss Tuesday night’s game against the Indiana Pacers, his third straight absence with a sore left knee.
The Knicks signed Ryan Arcidiacono to a 10-day hardship contract and waived Wayne Selden, who had a contract that would have become fully guaranteed this week. That opened a roster spot.
They then were part of a three-team trade that sent Rajon Rondo from the Lakers to Cleveland. The Knicks received Denzel Valentine, $1.1 million and the draft rights to a pair of players not expected to play in the NBA — Brad Newley and Wang Zhelin — for the draft rights to Louis Labeyrie, who was drafted by the team in 2014.
The deal gave the Knicks a cash payment. They then waived Valentine, again opening a roster spot.
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Selden played in three games with the Knicks totaling 19 minutes of action. Arcidiacono will take his place immediately, giving the team another guard with Derrick Rose out for at least another month while rehabilitating from ankle surgery and Walker still sidelined.
Arcidiacono had been playing with Maine in the G League, averaging 12.7 points and 8.0 assists and shooting 11-for-25 from three-point range in six games. He spent four seasons with the Chicago Bulls, starting 36 games.
While the Knicks clearly miss Randle, the quick return of Robinson is a help for a team that was outrebounded 43-30 in Toronto on Sunday and showed no ability to defend around the rim even against a Raptors squad without a post-up center.
"It’s actually a lot more than just shot-blocking," Evan Fournier said Sunday. "Shotblocking is the last part of the defense. But on the pick-and-roll on offense and defense, when you have a big that screens and rolls, it creates something on offense.
"Obviously, we got crushed on the rebounds . . . So I think that was a key to the game. Just having one true center with Taj [Gibson], it puts you in a tough spot, obviously. Obi [Toppin] played the 5 but I don’t know how comfortable he is playing that position.
"But like I said, that’s the craziness we’re in with all these guys out. So no excuse, we have to find ways to get it done."
By Steve Popper firstname.lastname@example.org i aria-hidden="true"">> @StevePopper
Steve Popper covers the Knicks for Newsday. He has spent nearly three decades covering the Knicks and the NBA, along with just about every sports team in the New York metropolitan area.
Source : https://www.newsday.com/sports/basketball/knicks/ryan-arcidiacono-wayne-selden-knicks-1.50466565608