Tuesday, September 7, 2010

A Glimpse at Knicks Rookie Timofey Mozgov

Basketball fans have been able to see Knicks 7'1" rookie center Timofey Mozgov in action at the FIBA World Championships over the last 2 weeks. Mozgov has shown great athleticism for his size, his ability to run the floor, and his developing inside game. On a Knicks squad that loves to run, Mozgov will be right in his element.

Mozgov is still very raw, though. He really needs to work on his rebounding game. Through 6 games at the World Championships, he's averaging less than 4 rebounds a game. That is unforgivable for a man of his size! Even in Euroleague play, Mozgov hasn't shown a knack for cleaning the glass. Against NBA competition, he'll have even more trouble getting those boards.

On the plus side, Mozgov is averaging 1 block per game, which is in line with his Euroleague stats. Still, Mozgov will need to improve his defensive game to compete at the NBA level.

The Breakdown
Mozgov is one of this year's very deep sleepers. If the Knicks coaching staff falls in love with his athleticism, he could get some minutes off the bench. If Mozgov secures a spot in the rotation, he's definitely going to score. The question is whether he can upgrade other facets of his game to be more of an all-around big man that can help your fantasy team. A big man who doesn't rebound is more of a burden than a blessing in most leagues.

Mozgov is only worth picking up in very, very deep leagues where you can afford to wait and see whether the Knicks give him a chance or an injury happens that forces Mozgov into the rotation. With the injury histories of Amar'e Stoudemire, Anthony Randolph, Ronny Turiaf, and Eddy Curry, it wouldn't be surprising if one or two of these guys went down and Mozgov got a chance to play big minutes.

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