Knicks’ Miles McBride Has Turned Into Legitimate Rotation Piece

Miles McBride, Knicks, NBA
Mar 23, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Knicks guard Miles McBride (2) warms up prior to the game against the Brooklyn Nets at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Throughout the marathon NBA season, teams will need players to step up at different times. For the New York Knicks, it has been all hands on deck the last few weeks as they navigated the loss of several key rotation players to injury.

One of the players who has stepped up big time has been guard Miles McBride. Outside of the rotation for a majority of the season, McBride got his first chance following the team’s trade with the Toronto Raptors, which saw RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley heading out of town.

McBride was given the first crack at replacing Quickley’s minutes off the bench as Jalen Brunson’s backup. He handled that well, showing a better grasp of running the team’s offense and providing his stellar defense as usual.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Miles McBride & New York Knicks Updates

However he was called upon for a larger role, such as Brunson missing a game because of injury, McBride answered the call. What he did against the Cleveland Cavaliers on March 3rd was a season-defining performance.

Brunson was injured on the Knicks’ first possession of the game, hurting his knee. McBride was inserted into the game at 11:13 remaining in the first quarter and didn’t see the bench for the remainder of the evening. He played all 47:13 that was left, helping the Knicks earn a hard-fought nine-point win.

That began what has been the best stretch of McBride’s NBA career. After not being in the rotation regularly at the onset of the season, McBride has become someone Tom Thibodeau cannot take off the court.

Against the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday afternoon, he became only the second player in the NBA this season to play all 48 minutes. The first was his teammate Josh Hart, who did it on Monday night against the Golden State Warriors.

McBride was fantastic against Brooklyn, as he has been during this recent stretch. He made 9-of-16 shot attempts overall and 6-12 from 3-point range, continuing his torrid scoring pace while scoring 26 points.

It was the second time in three games he scored at least 26 points, as he poured in a career-high 29 against the Warriors. Thibodeau inserted him into the starting lineup for Anunoby to match the Warriors’ small-ball lineup and it worked magnificently.

NBA NEWS & SCORES: Miles McBride & New York Knicks Updates

The two-way production McBride has provided could not have come at a better time. He is proving capable of not only playing alongside Brunson in the backcourt but thriving, as his numbers speak for themselves.

As shared by Tommy Beer on X, McBride has been on fire for the last 11 games. He is averaging 12.7 points per game and knocking down 2.5 3-pointers, providing the team with another floor spacer for Brunson to operate.

He is shooting the ball efficiently, making 49.5 percent from the field, 46.7 percent from 3-point range and 90.9 percent from the foul line. Most importantly, he is proving capable of running the offense in Brunson’s absence, totaling 28 assists and only five turnovers.

The Knicks are still struggling at times during the non-Brunson minutes for consistent offense. Their NBA trade deadline acquisitions of Alec Burks and Bojan Bogdanovic have not provided the kind of impact they were hoping for, leaving a void in the second unit.

But, McBride provides optimism that he can help fill the scoring void should he shift back to a bench role in the future when players start coming back to the lineup. He has been a major contributor for the Knicks and that doesn’t look like it will be changing any time soon.

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