New York Knicks View Kristaps Porzingis As Next Draymond Green

New York Knicks interim head coach Kurt Rambis is now saying that the team views Kristaps Porzingis as someone that can be as dominant as Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green, who happens to be one of the most versatile players in the NBA. According to ESPN, the Knicks are going to utilize Porzingis at the center position, so that he can exploit mismatches that are created by the new small ball revolution.

While everyone knows that Stephen Curry has developed into one of the most dangerous offensive players on the planet, some may not know that Draymond Green is just as important to the success of the Golden State Warriors. Green can play multiple positions, defend well, and can contribute in a variety of ways on the offensive end. Draymond has no qualms about passing the ball to an open teammate, so even when he’s not scoring, he’s helping out.

Warriors star Draymond Green
Draymond Green [Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images]
Successful NBA head coaches have a knack for figuring out where the mismatches on the court are. They then figure out how to exploit them to their team’s advantage. Coaches then keep going with that well until someone figures out how to stop it. Draymond Green is a tremendous chess piece for Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr. The New York Knicks are hoping that Kristaps Porzingis can become a valuable chess piece as well.

At 7’3″, 230 pounds, Kristaps Porzingis is already a match up nightmare for opposing NBA coaches. Someone that tall having range that extends beyond the three point line is quite the weapon because very few defenders can challenge his shot. Since he’s usually matched up against bigger players, Porzingis can use that shooting range to pull at least one front court defender from the paint so that his teammates can drive to the basket.

Rambis and Porzingis
Kurt Rambis and Kristaps Porzingis [Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images]
While he’s decent at it now, Kristaps Porzingis needs to learn how to drive to the basket better. NBA centers hate to guard the perimeter whenever they’re forced to switch on the pick and roll. Imagine how frustrating it would be for opponents if they had to do that more frequently with Porzingis. Obviously, the centers cannot stay back in the lane to protect against the drive because Kristaps can pull up and nail the outside shot.

One of the things that the New York Knicks want Kristaps Porzingis to improve on is his low post offense. There are times where the Latvian rookie falls in love with his outside shooting and settles for just being a spot up guy. In order to play the center position, Porzingis will have to learn to embrace the contact that comes with playing in the low post. If he can develop an arsenal of moves down low, then it will be hard for opposing centers to stop someone that tall.

Knicks center Robin Lopez
Robin Lopez [Photo by Elsa/Getty Images]
Defensively, Kristaps Porzingis is already a force in the NBA. Highlights of him swooping in from the weak side and blocking shots are routinely featured on SportsCenter. Porzingis is already trying to increase his weight, so once he does get to a certain point, then he’s going to need to learn to become a defensive stopper in the low post. Right now, the New York Knicks are protecting Kristaps by having Robin Lopez doing much of the dirty work inside.

When Kristaps Porzingis entered the NBA, he was immediately compared to Dirk Nowitzki, which he views as quite the compliment because the Dallas Mavericks star is his hero. Now, he’s being compared to Draymond Green, the second most valuable player on a team that is challenging Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls for the most wins in a season.

[Featured Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images]