When Tim Hardaway Jr. fell to the New York Knicks with the 24th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft most fans were surprised and excited. After all, his father devastated the Knicks time and time again during his NBA career. Hardaway Jr. has played so well that he's won over a coach that usually doesn't like rookies and played in way into All-Star weekend.
Tim Hardaway Jr. is averaging 9.3 points per game and shooting 39.6 percent from behind the three-point line. Those numbers have allowed him to join Carmelo Anthony as representatives of the New York Knicks at All-Star weekend.
The Knicks Tim Hardaway Jr will play in the Rising Stars game, formerly known as the Rookies/Sophomore Challenge & before that the JV game— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) January 29, 2014
Hardaway Jr. has been a fantastic rookie for the Knicks. He's shown better ball skills and defensive ability that most thought he'd bring to the table. He's shown the ability to play shooting guard and small forward. Most of all, he's shot the ball fluidly and brought an intenseness to the court the Knicks haven't gotten from any other player.
He's run the floor well and thrown down some powerful dunks thus far into the season. Hardaway Jr. has quickly gone from what many thought was a marginal reserve player, to a potential top sixth man, to a potential starter with sharpshooting ability.
What the future may hold for Hardaway Jr. and the Knicks is unknown. However, it's pretty clear that the Knicks have found something special with the Michigan product. He may not have been the point guard or big man the Knicks needed but he's given the Knicks a Rookie of the Year contender.
Hardaway Jr.'s lived up to every expectation the Knicks and their fans have put on him. He's become a major rotation player and contributor night in and night out. There isn't much more the Knicks could ask of a rookie, especially the 24th pick.
Congratulations Tim Hardaway Jr.! There's little doubt that you'll represent the New York Knicks with great pride and integrity. Hopefully this will bring you closer to Anthony because if he decides to re-sign with the Knicks you two will be sharing plenty of court time together. With any luck, maybe you two can spend time together on future All-Star courts.
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