Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek isn’t ready to vault rookie point guard Frank Ntilikina into the starting lineup – at least not yet. Ntilikina is coming off his career-high 11 assists against French legend Tony Parker, logging a season-high 31 minutes in San Antonio. Meanwhile Jarrett Jack is starting to fade and Hornacek apparently no longer believes Ramon Sessions, who began the season as starter, is the answer. Ntilikina had a tough act to follow Saturday. On Friday in New Orleans while Ntilikina was in his hotel room, Dallas’ Dennis Smith Jr., whom Phil Jackson passed on with No. 8 pick, lit up the Big Easy against the Pelicans with his first career triple double – 21 points, 10 assists, 10 rebounds. The Pelicans complete their rare home back-to-back Saturday against the Knicks. The Ntilikina-Smith Jr. showdown is next Sunday in Dallas. “Not yet [but] we’re trying to give him some more minutes and late in games,’’ Hornacek said. “San Antonio he was playing a great game. He missed a couple of shots late but other than that, he got us in our offense. We’ll continue to look at it but not now.’’ The Knicks fell in an 8-0 hole as Parker ate up Jarrett Jack in the first six minutes, scoring 10 of his 14 points. Parker was quieted when Ntilikina came off the bench. The San Antonio rematch is Tuesday at the Garden.
The Knicks are slowly expanding Frank Ntilikina’s role
New York Post | Dec 30