RJ Barrett on the ‘Big Opportunity’ for Knicks Ahead of Hawks Matchup

There are only 11 games left on the Knicks’ regular-season schedule, and they will have to run the table to finish with a .500 record.

Their next two opponents are their most important. The Knicks will be playing back-to-back series against the Hawks and Hornets, two games that have significant implications in their pursuit of a play-in tournament spot. If the Knicks lose, they will end the season with their eighth losing season in the last nine.

As of Tuesday, the Knicks are five games behind the 10th place Hawks (35-36) and six behind the ninth-place Hornets (36-35). If the Knicks beat the Hornets, it ensures that the protected first-round pick it sent to Atlanta when they traded for Cam Reddish will not convey in June.

“We’re going to go and try to win every single game,” RJ Barrett said of Atlanta per the New York Post. “They’re a team that’s ahead of us, so this will be a big opportunity for us.” 

Outside of Atlanta and two games against Charlotte, the Knicks will also be playing against the Heat, Pistons, Cavs, Nets, Wizards, and the Raptors.

This means they will be playing seven of their last 11 games against teams with above .500 records. The Knicks have won five of their previous eight games, despite shooting 34.5 percent and 37 percent from the field in their last two games.