Dec. 22, 2016
Joakim Noah Showing Improvement As He Played A Great Game Against The Pacers Last Night
The New York Knicks showed a lot of offense in their win against the Indiana Pacers last night. The Knicks shot an exact 50% from the field and shot an impressive 56.5% from behind the arc. Carmelo Anthony scored 35 (13-25), Derrick Rose added 24 (9-18), and Kristaps Porzingis added 21 (7-15). Those three all played impressively last night but the huge hurrah award should go out to Joakim Noah.
Noah has struggled so far in the 2016-17 season shooting just 47% in only 21 minutes per contest. He is averaging 4.7 points, 8 rebounds, 2.6 assists, and 1 block per contest this season - which is not good enough for the Knicks. Most fans blame Noah's shoulder injury last season for lack of production so far, but I believe that it just comes down to how many minutes he is playing. I still believe Noah 'has it' and he does too.
Despite the season struggles for Jo, he had an impressive outing last night where he scored 11 points and 11 rebounds in 30 minutes of action. This game was Jo's second double double this season and only his third in the last two seasons. Noah showed a lot of energy and passion for the game last night where he even got to play most of the fourth quarter for the first time in a long time. Not only was Noah more energized than ever but he even shot 75% from the free throw line (3-4). Despite shooting a season average of 30% from the stripe, Noah did not give up and shown fans that he is working hard on his free throw shooting. Noah also had two blocks in last night's showing showing fans that he still is a great defender. Noah played solid perimeter defense as well last night forcing Pacers' big man Al Jefferson to miss some of his shots after shooting lights out (8-11). Noah did not guard Jefferson much last night as Kyle O'Quinn and Kristaps Porzingis did, but once Noah defended him, Jefferson was not as good.
The Knicks will host the Orlando Magic tomorrow night where they will try to improve their record to 16-13. As long as Noah is playing with a lot of energy like last night, expect to see him play another solid 30 minutes or possibly even more. You can see that Noah is real disappointed with the way he has been playing but you can also see that he is starting to improve.
Like I have been saying all season - Knicks fans do not give up on Joakim Noah, he will start playing better and the results will show for it.
Joakim Noah is still one of the top big men in the business and once he finds himself again, expect to see him as the all-star player he once was with the Chicago Bulls.