Ronnie Brewer signed with the New York Knicks over the summer in what was, for the most part, a very quiet move. There were no ESPN headlines, no packed press conferences, not really anything noteworthy. Only the most passionate Knicks fans were aware of the signing when it happened.
Despite the lack of hoopla over the signing, getting Brewer is proving to be one of the best moves that the Knicks made over the off season. Brewer, who played his two previous seasons with the Chicago Bulls, isn’t a dominant offensive player- his strength is defense.
Brewer isn’t a “statistical” defender, meaning that he won’t dominate the box score, although he does have 5 steals on the season. He will not allow his man to score, and he can guard anywhere from SG, to SF, to PF, and even C. He rotates, gets around screens, closes out, boxes out- Brewer is the prototypical defender and a coach’s dream, especially a defensive one like Knicks coach Mike Woodson.
The 27 year-old Arkansas native is averaging 10.5 PPG for the undefeated Knicks. He scores mostly from offensive put backs, or 3PT shots. Despite his fundamental defense, Brewer’s jump shot is far from technical. It is the kind of shot that would make a young kid turn to his mom and ask, “Mom why does he shoot like that?” Although it’s an awkward looking shot, it goes in: Brewer is shooting 53% on 3 3PTA per game. The story goes that Brewer broke his arm at a young age, and was never able to develop a textbook shot.
With Brewer and reigning Defensive Player of the Year Tyson Chandler in the same starting lineup, the Knicks finally have a formidable defensive that can complement their stacked offense.
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