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Isaac Okoro, Knicks’ draft target, may be what Tom Thibodeau crave

Auburn’s small forward defense specialist Isaac Okoro will seem to be exactly what Dr. Tibodo ordered.

Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau is transforming the franchise culture into a culture that emphasizes victory and defense. And Okoro says that’s all he knows.

Okoro, who interviewed Knicks Brass prior to Wednesday’s draft, said he tried to tell the team that it would “bring a culture of victory.” In all accounts, Okoro is shaped as the best border defender in the draft.

“It’s a two-way player, stopping the players of the best team and contributing to the attacking side,” Okoro said of his attributes during the Zoom Call. “What separates me from everyone else in the draft is the will to win, [being] I’m happy to do anything for the team to win, play my part and be a defensive player. “

Knicks chooses number 8, Okoro remains on the radar, and the club may pass the point guard.

Okoro, Devin Wassel, and the 3D Wing are all Knicks-like players.

Isaac Okoro
Isaac OkoroAP

Wassel is a better three-pointer. Okoro is a better defender. Interestingly, Knicks was trying Vassel in Atlanta last month, but not Okoro in Auburn.

Point guards Kirian Hayes and Kira Lewis Jr. are also a consideration, and Knicks president Leon Rose said he would eventually prefer to trade back and acquire assets in a draft with parity. Also reports.

There are a lot of question marks in Okoro’s outside shots in leagues that have never emphasized three-point shots.

Knicks’ concern about Okoro is whether his cap is just a solid role player cap. ESPN’s draft maven, Seth Greenberg, however, compared Okoro with Jaylen Brown.

And Tibodo was able to see in him his ex-players Jimmy Butler, Chicago and Minnesota.

By training with the team, Okoro feels that he has dispelled his offensive concerns.

“During the college season [my shot] It was a C plus, “said Okoro. “I think I’m working every day and taking a lot of shots. That’s around B Plus. [to an] A. I’m learning how to spend more time on jump shots and raise the ball. During the college season I shot a lot of flat balls, but I’m learning to draw a higher arc on it.

I feel like [teams] I thought the attack was one of my weaknesses. But they left knowing that it was one of my strengths. “

19-year-old Okoro arrives at Auburn Gym every day at 6 am for a drill and says he is working on ball handling and shooting. He also played a 5v5 pickup game with his former Auburn teammate.

In his one-off season, Okoro averaged 12.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.0 assists. He shot 51.4 percent, but only 3 to 28.6 percent.

Okoro finds that his defense is still his fame.

“That’s what every team liked about me — it has its defensive presence,” Okoro said. “Enter, have that defensive presence, [being] I am willing to protect the best players of other teams and shut them down.

“I feel like I have to come to the NBA and learn the pace of the NBA,” Okoro added. “That’s the biggest challenge. But my first step in the NBA is just defending. That’s what I’m already good at.”

Isaac Okoro, Knicks’ draft target, may be what Tom Thibodeau crave

Source link Isaac Okoro, Knicks’ draft target, may be what Tom Thibodeau crave

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