Derrick Rose, Immanuel Quickley putting pressure on RJ Barrett

Entering Monday’s game against the Hawks, not only had the Knicks’ backcourt bench tandem of Derrick Rose and Immanuel Quickley outplayed the opposition in the last three games, they had outplayed the Knicks’ starting backcourt.

Elfrid Payton has been a target of the fan base, but RJ Barrett has struggled of late, too.

"It’s more the way the bench is playing," coach Tom Thibodeau said of Barrett’s reduced minutes.

Happy times for Thibs Rose has known Thibodeau for a decade, playing for him with Chicago and Minnesota before arriving in New York.

When Thibodeau was told that Rose said he is smiling more, he laughed before noting, "I want us to work.

He has spent nearly three decades covering the Knicks and the NBA, along with just about every sports team in the New York metropolitan area.

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