The New York Knicks beat the Dallas Mavericks on Monday, mostly because the Mavs have serious trouble scoring while Dirk Nowitzki is out. It’s a shame he wasn’t healthy enough to suit up, because watching him against Kristaps Porzingis was a treat last season. Porzingis is like if you hit 21-year-old Dirk with the super soldier serum, and he was in form on Monday night — so much so that as announcer Mike Breen discussed the connection between Dirk and Kristaps, he accidentally called the young one by the elder’s name.
You can forgive Breen, though, since Porzingis is already doing uncanny imitations of Dirk with the original man right on the sideline:
As unquestionably great as Dirk is, there’s even a chance for KP to be better, since he can handle the ball better than Dirk ever could and has a higher ceiling as a defensive shot blocker. The Knicks look like they’ll be inconsistent all year due to the brittle bodies of Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose, to say nothing of the perplexing leadership of Phil Jackson. Yet the combined talents of Porzingis and Carmelo Anthony, who each went for 24 points to lead the Knicks to the win on Monday, might just be enough to get them into the playoffs.