New York Knicks’ Josh Hart Opens Up About Team’s Recent Skid

Josh Hart, Knicks, NBA
Feb 29, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Josh Hart (3) watches his three point shot against the Golden State Warriors during the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Injuries are something that every NBA team has to deal with throughout the season. Some teams are luckier than others, as they avoid the big injuries to key players. But, there are teams on the other end of the spectrum who don’t get so lucky. The New York Knicks would fall into the latter.

New York was rolling to start 2024, winning 15 out of their first 17 games. The trade they made with the Toronto Raptors to acquire OG Anunoby, Precious Achiuwa and Malachi Flynn was paying major dividends as the team was transforming into one of the best in the NBA before our eyes.

Unfortunately, the injuries began piling up after that. The Knicks were able to overcome the loss of starting center Mitchell Robinson because Isaiah Hartenstein stepped into the lineup and was excellent. But, he has been dealing with an Achilles injury for more than a month which has derailed his production.

Joining Mitchell on the sidelines for an extended absence was the team’s starting forward duo of Anunoby and Julius Randle. The last time either of them has been on the court was January 27th against the Miami Heat.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Josh Hart & New York Knicks Updates

Anunoby has been dealing with an elbow issue and underwent surgery to repair it. Randle separated his shoulder in that game and has been working hard to get back on the court. But, surgery remains a possibility for him.

Without their entire frontcourt depth, and injuries to Jalen Brunson, Donte DiVincenzo, Bojan Bogdanovic and Jericho Sims mixed in, New York has been undermanned for weeks. One of the players who has been pushed into a much larger role as a result is Josh Hart.

Hart, who began the season coming off the bench for New York as a do-it-all wing, is now the starting small forward. He is also the backup shooting guard and backup power forward on some nights depending on what Tom Thibodeau needs. 

But, things are beginning to take a toll on him and his teammates. Following Thursday’s loss to the Golden State Warriors, Hart opened up about the team’s recent skid, as New York has lost seven out of their last nine games.

“I’m not sure what you all expect or what you all think. We are playing as best as we can with the bodies that we have. We have guys like [OG Anunoby], [Julius Randle], [Mitchell Robinson], who’ve been out for a long time. … We’re playing our asses off. It’s not like we’re just sitting there and crying about injuries and laying down,” a frustrated and tired Hart said.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Josh Hart & New York Knicks Updates

No one will ever question the heart and grit of this Knicks team. No matter the odds stacked against them, they are going to come out and compete every night even when they are at a distinct disadvantage talent-wise.

But, the injuries have certainly begun taking a toll. It has resulted in some heavy workloads that players are not used to, and their performance on the court is beginning to show that. Hart is one of the guys who has been called upon and is doing his best to keep the team in games.

Against the Warriors on Thursday night, Hart played 47:10 in a non-overtime game. It is the ninth time he has logged 40+ minutes this season. Eight of those games have come since Anunoby and Randle went down, as he is averaging roughly 40.1 minutes per game.

Sooner or later, something will have to give. Players aren’t going to make it until the NBA Playoffs at this rate, as Thibodeau needs to find a way to not only keep his guys healthy but keep the team afloat with victories until reinforcements arrive.

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