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NBA discussions including rumors, free agency, playoffs and everything in between

Willy Hernangomez Will Most Likely Be the Knicks Backup Center

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

The preseason has given New York Knicks fans a glimpse as to how the Knicks will play together in the 2016-2017 season. They have looked great and we have yet to see all the Knicks starters play together. One player that has shined on the court and impressed everyone is Willy Hernangomez and has proven that he deserves to play.

Everybody loves Hernangomez and I can't blame them. He has looked great during preseason. He has a great touch in the paint and grabs a lot of rebounds. The Knicks' staff has said good things about him and that should separate him from his competition and get him some well-deserved minutes.

"We've got to find him some minutes," Jeff Hornacek said. "He deserves it." Yes he does but will the rookie be ahead in the rotation of Kyle O'Quinn and Marshall Plumlee? I figured Plumlee would win the job of being the backup center to Joakim Noah but Plumlee hasn't done much to separate himself from the competition in the preseason. Willy on the other hand has done everything well and has caught everyone's attention. 

O'Quinn is a veteran while Hernangomez is a rookie. That should give O'Quinn the job but Hernangomez has played beyond his years. He may only be 22 years old but you wouldn't be able to tell based on his attitude on the court. 

"I like the big baby [Willy Hernangomez]. He's a guy who can score, he can pass, he can play D. He can do it all," Carmelo Anthony told ESPN's Ian Begley. "I try to not make comparisons, but I see a lot of Marc Gasol in him. That's a great sign because Marc is a great player. So for him to have the skills knowing that he has at his age, it's something special."

Anthony compared the young Spanish center to one of the best centers in the league. That is a high compliment and I doubt Melo would want the young center to not get on the court.

I am going to predict that Hernangomez will be the backup center when the season starts because he has won the job during preseason. O'Quinn didn't do anything to reassure coaches that he is the obvious choice as the backup center. Hernangomez is the best center on the team not named Noah and should see regular minutes when the season starts. 

Bulls Trade Snell for Bucks' Carter-Williams

Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bulls and the Milwaukee Bucks have agreed to swap Tony Snell for Michael Carter-Williams according to sources. The trade has not officially occurred but a source close to Carter-Williams told ESPN that he was heading to Chicago. 

Milwaukee has been trying to find an adequate replacement for Khris Middleton ever since he suffered a long-term injury in September. They acquired Michael Beasley from the Rockets and now Snell and that should be enough. I thought trading for Beasley was a good move but the Bucks want to be safe and have added Snell to their roster.

Snell had been on the Bucks' radar because they wanted a shooting wingman who can also defend well. Snell shot 35 percent from the three last year and should give the Bucks a reliable backup wing. 

According to ESPN, if the deal does go through, the Bucks will open talks to extend Snell's contract. The Bucks like him and want him to stick around for a few years. He has the potential to be a great role player down the line for the Bucks.

As for the Bulls, they found a backup point guard for Rajon Rondo. My only issue with this trade is that Carter-Williams cannot shoot the ball well and the Bulls seem to have a lot of guards that won't be taking many three balls. They have a lot of veteran experience so they should be fine for the most part but when they play a high-offense team, I don't know how they will compete.

Is this a good trade for either team? Let us know in the comments below. 

Knicks Bench Shows Up In Game Against Celtics

Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

In their fourth preseason game, the Knicks lost to the Boston Celtics but the Knicks may have gotten the results they wanted in this game. Not the loss because even if it is a preseason game, nobody likes to lose. I mean the Knicks got reassurance from their bench and they played well for the most part. 

Before we get to the bench, we need to analyse how the Knicks' starters played because it was Joakim Noah's first game. It was a forgettable debut game for Noah as a Knick because he did not do anything right. He ended up missing a layup, blew a dunk and let Al Horford have his way in the game. The first game is the hardest when coming back so this game won't give us any insight on how Noah will play with the Knicks. 

Noah returned to the starting lineup this game but the Knicks lost another player before the game was over. Kristaps Porzingis didn't play in the second half due to groin pain. The Knicks will sit him out until the season opener on the 25th.

“I honestly don’t know what happened — I first started feeling [it] in the first quarter and got worse and worse,’’ Porzingis said. “I told the doctors and they were being super cautious. They want [to be] sure I’m 100 percent healthy.. I don’t think it’s anything serious.’’

Noah didn't play well but the Knicks bench stepped up and boy did they look great. Ron Baker, Mindaugus Kuzminskas and center Willy Hernangomez all played well. Baker was making shots and plays as if he were a veteran. The Knicks can rely on him to make the right plays and make timely shots. Kuzminskas on the other hand is a scoring Juggernaut. He didn't play in the first half and still scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. He may have a big season for the Knicks.

Hernangomez is talented and is going to have a bright future in the NBA. He is skilled and gifted in the paint. If the Knicks need a backup center to step up if an injury occurs, they will be fine. 

 “I love Big Baby. I don’t like to compare, but I see a lot of Marc Gasol in him," said Carmelo Anthony.