Alan Hahn spoke to Mike D’Antoni, who mentioned he’s contemplating using the D-League to get Danilo in shape before he makes his NBA debut.
Mike D’Antoni said the D-League was a possible destination for Danilo Gallinari, at the start of the season, if anything to get him extended minutes in game action to help him better prepare for his debut in the NBA lineup. The Knicks’ affiliate in Reno is coached by Jay Humphries, who was on D’Antoni’s staff in Phoenix and will run the D’Antoni system.
Another potential D-Leaguer could be Patrick Ewing, Jr., though D’Antoni also mentioned the idea of sending Ewing, Jr. to Europe for the year. They would retain his rights until next training camp. Same goes for Dan Grunfeld.
D’Antoni isn’t against the idea of using the D-League. In fact, unlike Isiah Thomas, D’Antoni doesn’t like the idea of carrying 15 players throughout the season. He prefers to practice and work with smaller numbers. Less people sitting around.
Minor league assignments make sense although I think the competition level is lower than the elite league in Europe. But if they are planning to play Galli heavy minutes, he should get himself in game shape.
As for Ewing, giving him a year to develop is smart, especially work on his jumper. He’s a project that needs time to marinate and I feel he’ll really help this team after the cluster of 3s, including Quentin Richardson moving on, breaks up a bit.