Thibodeau on How to Establish Team Defense. And Win

Knick coach Tom Thibodeau on how to establish Team Defense — in an interview after the Knicks beat the Indiana Pacers, 109-106 on Dec 18, 2022 (for their 7th straight win to improve to 17-13 on the year):

  • “Everything is a shared responsibility,
  • We got to protect the basket first; you don’t have a man, you protect our basket.
  • And then we go from there —
    • find the ball,
    • mark the shooter,
    • stop the ball,
    • build your wall —
  • do all the things that you need to do to have a sound defense.
  • We have to take that part away and build out the shell.
  • And then whatever it is we’re doing — whether it’s
    • defensive transition,
    • pick and roll,
    • catch and shoot,
    • low post,
  • it’s building out your shell.”

Thibs on How to Win

Thibodeau continued later in the interview, defining how to win:

“To win it’s

  • your defense,
  • your rebounding, and
  • keeping your turnovers down.

That puts you in position to win.

And if we keep doing what we’re doing offensively, where we’re creating rhythm for each other, we’re going to score plenty of points.

So we have to understand what goes into winning, and then how you win. Each game is different.”

Knicks’ Current 9-Man Rotation

The Knicks are currently using a tight 9-man rotation with their starting 5 0f Mitchell Robinson, Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, Quentin Grimes, and Jalen Brunson having the 2nd highest Plus/Minus amongst starting teams in the NBA. The bench is (Deuce) Miles McBride, Immanuel Quickley, Isaiah Hartenstein, and Jericho Sims (with Obi Toppin out injured).

Cam Reddish, Evan Fournier, and Derrick Rose are all healthy — just out of the rotation.

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