Timofey Mozgov, the Russian center who signed a 3-year deal worth approximately 9.7 million dollars with the Knicks in July, has impressed head coach Mike D’Antoni so much so that he is calling him “training camp’s brightest light.”
That’s a lot of praise for a young rookie, but Mozgov may deserve it. In his first preseason game against Armani Jeans Milano, Mozgov came off the bench and chipped in with 10 points on 3-4 shooting. He also went 4-6 from the foul line, something that many bigmen can’t do.
Marc Berman of the New York Post is reporting that D’Antoni may have a “man crush” on the young fellow.
“I watched him,” D’Antoni said. “He can shoot the ball, nice rhythm. He has a learning curve. But he’s smart. He makes foul shots. His confidence is good. He’s definitely not shying away, attacking the basket.”
The Knicks currently have a logjam at the center position, with new additions Ronny Turiaf and Anthony Randolph, as well as the soon-to-be let go Eddy Curry. Add in an impressive and improving Mozgov and the position may soon be his.
Next up for the Knicks will be the Minnesota Timberwolves tomorrow in Paris, France. Let’s see how Mozgov fairs in his second game of action, and we may soon start hearing Mozgov chants outside Madison Square Garden.