Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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GREENBURGH, N.Y. — The running joke in the Knicks’ press room is that Landry Fields has struggled ever since he began doing a daily postseason diary for the New York Post.
But the reality is that Fields has not been the same player since the Carmelo Anthony trade.
His ineffective play has just reached a new low in the playoffs.
After averaging 9.7 points and 6.4 rebounds during the regular season, the rookie from Stanford is averaging 2.0 points and 1.7 boards in the playoffs.
He has gone 3-for-12 and tallied just six points…in the entire series.
“He’s trying too hard,” head coach Mike D’Antoni said after practice Saturday at the Knicks Westchester campus.
“I told him to watch a Tarzan movie where a guy gets in the quicksand. Don’t flail, don’t paddle, just lay there. … Calm down, take your spots, don’t be over-aggressive.”
D’Antoni indicated after Game 3 that he would “ponder that question” of whether to remove the struggling Fields from the lineup, but said Saturday Fields would start Game 4.
“He’s struggling, obviously,” D’Antoni said. “He’s trying too hard and that happens with a rookie. We’re going to stick with him; he’s going to get through it.”
D’Antoni spoke with Fields and told him to keep things simple.
“It’s just really reacting to plays, letting the game come to you, taking advantage of stuff instead of trying to force things,” Fields said.
On the defensive end, Fields has been chasing around Ray Allen, who is averaging 24.7 points in the series and poured in 32 points, including 8 of 11 from beyond the arc, in Game 3.
“Yeah, it’s tough because he’s a phenomenal player, comes off screens real well,” Fields said. “So on the defensive end you kind of have to stay in tune with whatever he’s doing and then offensively kind of get back into the notion that, you know let the game come to you.”
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.