David Fizdale said he believes the Knicks need a point guard who can shoot from deep to help center Mitchell Robinson’s growth.
The Post reported in February Knicks scouts were told earlier this season to hone in on scoring point guards for the team’s upcoming lottery pick.
Point guards Frank Ntilikina (32 percent), Dennis Smith Jr. (29.6 percent) and Elfrid Payton (20.3 percent) are each shooting erratically from 3.
“Just looking at the roster where they’re at — I love Elfrid, Frank and Dennis Smith Jr. — but all of them have something in common in that they’re not consistent 3-point shooters coming off the pick-and-roll,” the former Knicks coach told ESPN Radio. “And if you have a super talent like Mitchell — and I think Mitchell can end up being one of the best centers over the next 10 years — you have to have a guy coming off that pick and if you have to fight over that pick-and-roll. … If you do that, all of a sudden Mitchell Robinson looks totally different. And his production goes up big time.”
Robinson leads the NBA in field-goal percentage (73 percent). That would be an NBA record if the regular season is scrapped. Robinson has become a master at the alley-oop, but Fizdale, who now works for ESPN after being fired in December with a 4-18 record, feels he’d be more lethal with a point guard who is respected from the perimeter.
Fizdale still thinks the Knicks could use an outside-shooting power forward.
The Knicks had a gem in 7-foot-3 Kristaps Porzingis, who was traded to the Mavericks 13 months ago. Julius Randle was signed to a three-year, $63 million pact to play power forward, but shot a dismal 27.7 percent from 3 this season.
“The other piece to that puzzle is a 4-man who can really rope that 3,’’ Fizdale said. “Like I’ve always said, the key to player development is spacing. You want to see players look better on the court, spread the floor.”
The 2020 draft is not considered strong but is plentiful with lottery-pick point guards. ESPN’s Seth Greenberg believes Iowa State’s Tyrese Haliburton and LaMelo Ball — without his father — would be the top choices for the Knicks.