NBA New York Knicks

Top 5 Bench Players for New York Knicks

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Top 5 Bench Players for New York Knicks

Anthony Gruppuso - US PRESSWIRE

Like any other contending team with championship aspirations, the New York Knicks are going to have to rely on more than just the initial starting five they set out on the floor. While MVP candidate Carmelo Anthony has single-handedly put the Knicks on his back numerous times throughout the season, New York will have to rely also on their second unit if they want to get through the Boston Celtics and make a deep run in this year’s playoffs.

It is very well known that the Knicks’ top player off the bench is clearly J.R. Smith. His new-found attack-the-basket mentality has greatly complemented his ability to create his own jump shot, as he has had the best season of his career and won the honor of Sixth Man of the Year.

Delving further, it will be important for New York to see significant contributions from the likes of Steve Novak, Chris Copeland and Jason Kidd. With Anthony and Smith expecting to garner much of the defense’s attention by way of double and maybe even triple teams, it is imperative these jump-shooters be well prepared and ready to shoot the ball.

It is very possible that a very astute coach like Doc Rivers could have his eyes set on not allowing for a player like Anthony to beat them. This type of defensive approach could very well yield incredible looks for Knicks shooters, and it is of the utmost importance that they take advantage of the open shots they’re expected to receive if New York wishes to advance.

Here are the top 5 players off the New York bench.

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5. Steve Novak

Kelley L. Cox - US PRESSWIRE

New York will need Novak to take advantage of any and all open looks from 3-point range.

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4. Chris Copeland

Curtis Wilson - US PRESSWIRE

Copeland's offensive efficiency will prove valuable as he looks to provide a lift off the bench for New York.

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3. Jason Kidd

Tom Szczerbowski - US PRESSWIRE

Kidd provided a nice lift on the defensive end for New York in their Game 1 win over Boston, recording three steals in the fourth quarter alone.

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2. Kenyon Martin

Anthony Gruppuso - US PRESSWIRE

Who knew this late-season acquisition would prove to be so valuable for this Knicks squad?

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1. J.R. Smith

Anthony Gruppuso - US PRESSWIRE

Smith's superb bench play this year has earned him the honor of Sixth Man of the Year.