Former Knicks’ executive let loose on Twitter
New York Knicks forward Mario Hezonja has a lot to prove still as a former lottery pick after the Orlando Magic decided to let him walk as a free agent this past offseason.
One person who doesn’t care for Hezonja’s game is former Knicks’ executive Clarence Gaines Jr., who worked under Phil Jackson.
Gaines went after Hezonja on Twitter by claiming that his defense is an issue.
If you're a @nyknicks fan & wondering why @mariohezonja couldn't EARN court time vs @celtics with @KevKnox going down it's because he's a huge liability as an individual defender. He couldn't match the toughness or athleticism of the C's wings. Love how @wholeteamDot competed.
— Clarence Gaines (@ClarenceGaines2) October 21, 2018
Hwzonja took the high road on Twitter and laughed it off.
— Mario Hezonja (@mariohezonja) October 21, 2018
Gaines wasn’t done though as he criticized Knick’s head coach David Fizdale.
Fair ?-I didn't watch the game but saw the last play. My first reaction was why wasn't @FrankLikina on @CarisLeVert. @T_HardJR is my 3rd option to guard him based on the players in the game. But I also respect Fizdale showing confidence in Tim. Players grow when U believe in them https://t.co/HWevmX7jUf
— Clarence Gaines (@ClarenceGaines2) October 20, 2018
Hezonja did struggle during the preseason and still hasn’t worked his way into the Knicks’ rotation as his minutes continue to decline every game. He’s scored a total of 19 points on 36.4 percent shooting in a total of 42 minutes on the floor.
I honestly can’t tell you whether or not I think Hezonja is a defensive liability, but his offensive game is an issue.
Even though Hezonja’s minutes have been dipping, he’ll have to time to prove himself this season due to the fact that unfortunately other players will get injured and likely force him into more playing time.
If things don’t work out for Hezonja, it will be interesting to see where his career goes after this season due to the fact that he’s on a one-year deal to prove that he belongs in the NBA.
Comment below and give us your thoughts on Hezonja as well as Gaines’ tweets.
Paul has been a professional writer since 2010 and covered the NFL for several years as a credentialed media member. Some of his work has been linked to companies like FOX Sports, MSN, ESPN, Rolling Stone, Forbes and Deadspin. He’s also appeared on sports talk radio shows from around the United States.