Kyle O’Quinn has become an important role player for the Knicks in their surprisingly strong start to the 2017-18 season. At 16-14, the Knicks are firmly in the playoff hunt in the Eastern Conference, and with so many question marks coming into the season regarding everyone on the roster not named Kristaps Porzingis, it’s taken the emergence of plyaers like O’Quinn to get them there.
O’Quinn is averaging 6.5 points and 6.0 rebounds in just over 16 minutes per game off of the bench, an impressive level of production in such limited minutes that has also yielded one of the team’s best net ratings at +4.0 when on the court. Now in his third season in New York, O’Quinn is finding himself comfortable in his role not only on the court but also in his newfound home city.
The Knicks center has found himself a new calling off the court that few would have ever guessed he would have (including himself) as New York’s “Bar Mitzvah Man.” That title comes from his own mouth, but O’Quinn has apparently become a regular at bar and bat mitzvahs all over town.
As O’Quinn explained to ESPN’s Ian Begley, it all started when he was invited to the bat mitzvah of his agent’s daughter and found it to be “one of the best parties I’ve been to in my life.” From there, business has been booming for the Knicks’ resident “Bar Mitzvah Man” as he’s been booked a number of times for appearances to hang out with the kids.
“The parties are crazy,” he said. “I did one, did two, and the next thing you know, I was just Bar Mitzvah Man.”
That includes dancing, joking around with the kids, taking selfies and signing autographs.
“They see how much I enjoy it and they let me rock out,” he said. “The parents are partying with the kids and it’s a big festival. They’re letting loose, having a good time and the kids are having a good time.
“Honestly, it’s really nice to be a part of their culture and be down with them.”
O’Quinn seems to genuinely enjoy it, as Begley notes he fairly regularly stays long past the time he’s been booked to attend because he enjoys the parties (and the food), although sometimes it does get to be a bit much with the constant selfies. Who would’ve thought that part of the Knicks’ resurgence would be an increased demand for Knicks players at New York bar and bat mitzvahs? So, if you’re in the Tri-State area and in need of a celebrity to drop by for your kid’s special day, O’Quinn is your man.