HomeSports NewsPrecious Achiuwa's Promising Progress with the Knicks

Precious Achiuwa’s Promising Progress with the Knicks


Precious Achiuwa’s Promising Progress with the Knicks

It’s not often that a player goes from being a relatively unknown name to becoming a crucial part of a team’s rotation in just a matter of weeks. But that’s exactly what has happened with Precious Achiuwa and the New York Knicks. Since entering the starting lineup due to an injury to Julius Randle, Achiuwa has been a force to be reckoned with, particularly on the boards.

Achiuwa, a 24-year-old power forward, has always had a thing for rebounding. As a young kid, he idolized players like Zach Randolph and Dennis Rodman, who had a knack for gobbling up missed shots. He admired their ability to predict where the ball would bounce and position themselves accordingly. Now, Achiuwa is showing off those same instincts on the court.

In his 10 games as a starter, Achiuwa has been averaging an impressive 14.3 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. What’s even more impressive is his ability to grab offensive rebounds. He’s been leaping over opponents and making his second jump before others have even landed from their first. It’s as if he can see where the ball is going to carom next before it even touches the rim.

Achiuwa credits his success on the boards to his tenacity and instincts. He’s not the tallest player on the floor, but he’s able to read the trajectory of the shot and anticipate whether it will be a long rebound or if it will bounce left or right. It’s an instinctual skill that he can’t fully explain but has honed over time.

What’s most impressive about Achiuwa’s recent success is how unexpected it was. When he was acquired by the Knicks in a trade with the Toronto Raptors, he was hardly the focal point of the deal. But he has quickly become one of the team’s steadiest contributors, impressing head coach Tom Thibodeau with his quick decision-making on offense and his ability to cover ground defensively.

Thibodeau has been using Achiuwa as a screener and spacing him out to the corner. His pick-and-roll chemistry with Jalen Brunson has been improving, and he’s been finding success in fake dribble handoffs, driving to the hoop for quick layups. Thibodeau has been impressed not only with Achiuwa’s physical skills but also with his basketball IQ.

Of course, Achiuwa’s success may present a good problem for the Knicks once Randle and OG Anunoby return from injury. The rotation will become crowded, and players like Miles McBride and Jericho Sims, who have proven to be reliable regulars, may have to take a step back. But if Achiuwa continues to deliver the way he has been, it may force the Knicks to rethink their plans.

For now, Achiuwa is focused on honing his skills and making the most of his opportunity with the Knicks. He’s proving that he belongs on the court and that he can be a valuable contributor to a team with playoff aspirations. With his tenacity, instincts, and ability to make quick decisions on both ends of the court, Achiuwa is on his way to becoming a fan favorite in New York.

(Photo of Precious Achiuwa: Bill Streicher / USA Today)

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