Noah Vonleh signed with the Knicks on July 24th, adding some much-needed height to New York’s roster. With star power forward Kristaps Porzingis expected to miss extended time with an ACL injury and the impending release of Joakim Noah, Vonleh offers a short-term solution to this gap in the depth chart.
So what exactly does the former top-ten pick in the 2014 NBA Draft add to this Knicks team? The answer is rebounding ability.
“Rebounding has always been the biggest thing for me. Since I was a young kid, I was always able to rebound. I got a good eye for what angle it’s coming off and just going after it. That’s my skill that got me in the NBA. That’s what I get myself going with,” said Vonleh. “I think I can definitely bring a lot. They lost guys like Kyle O’Quinn, and Porzingis is hurt right now. Enes Kanter is a great rebounder, but I think I can help with that and bring energy.’’
This assertion is substantiated by his stats. Last season, he averaged a career-high 5.8 boards (17.1 rebounds per 48 minutes), including 6.9 rebounds a game as a member of the Bulls in just 19 minutes of action. Vonleh was particularly effective on the defensive glass, posting a career-high 30.2 DRB%.
During his lone season at Indiana, he was a menace on the boards as well, averaging 9 rebounds per game as a freshman before forgoing his eligibility to enter the NBA.
His numbers have improved with each passing season, and Knicks fans have every reason to believe that this trend will continue.
He has been working hard this offseason to improve upon his skills including his participation in training sessions with NBA All-Star Draymond Green, who knows a thing or two about pulling down missed shots off the glass.
Hopefully, a change of scenery is exactly what Vonleh needs to unlock his true potential.
Featured Image via Flickr/Bryan Horowitz