WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — As the Westchester Knicks opened up their fifth season at home, their top prospect had not even arrived yet. Given two-way player Allonzo Trier’s early success with the New York Knicks, it’s becoming a question as to whether or not he will step foot on an NBA G League floor.
Through 12 games with New York, the rookie is averaging 11.9 points on a 50/45/86 shooting clip, providing head coach David Fizdale with a reliable scorer off the bench. His play speaks for itself, but those around him recognize that he belongs in the NBA.
“Allonzo has been great. He’s a very tough basketball player,” said Knicks teammate and Westchester assignee Luke Kornet. “If he keeps playing like this, that should be enough to keep him around.”
Having earned an NBA contract himself this year after serving as a two-way player last season, Kornet knows full well that such a path can work out for prospects chasing their dreams. His success, paired with New York’s commitment to his development, should give a player like Trier hope.
“It shows that the organization is committed to guys if they put in the work. That’s the biggest takeaway. They care to see guys transition forward,” he added.
After playing out his 45 allocated days in the NBA, that transition could be right around the corner for Trier. While he may eagerly await Trier’s arrival in Westchester, 2018 NBA G League Coach of the Year Mike Miller suggested the 22-year-old is proving he’s too valuable in New York.
“The organization has done a great job identifying guys who fit what they want as part of their group. They’ve done really well and I think there’s a trend going on,” Miller said. “Allonzo is ready right away. The development was done by coach David Fizdale and his staff in summer and fall. He’s been prepared to play.”
Trier’s success has been explosive, which matches his style of play on the court. He attacks the rim and finishes strong around the basket. The coaching staff has encouraged him early on to play confidently and seek out his shot from beyond the arc as well. Someone who with plays with his heart on his sleeve, the young gun’s awing athleticism and post-scoring celebrations have endeared him to Knicks fans early on.
He’s taken the organization by storm, but as far as fellow Knicks Two-Way Player Isaiah Hicks is concerned, his recent demonstration of prowess has already made him the NBA’s worst-kept secret.
“There’s no doubt (he’s an NBA player),” Hicks said. “Everyone sees it. Coach Fizdale isn’t the only one. He’s very competitive and has been playing aggressively since day one. Once he went undrafted, he had that chip on his shoulder and now we’re seeing him prove he belongs.”