“When you can’t play, you can’t affect the game on the court. I just found other ways to try to help my teammates be better,” Brandon Knight told NBA.com in opening up about his recovery from ACL surgery.
Just two years removed from a career-high 19.6 points per game in 2015-2016, Knight enters his 7th season in the NBA with an increased focus on being a leader for what’s now a set foundation for the Phoenix Suns.
Now entering the fourth year of a 5-year, $70-million contract signed with Phoenix back in 2015, Knight may be making a pretty penny, but his value to NBA teams has never been lower, as the league has all but forgotten about him.
Knight was already on the decline in Phoenix before his season-ending injury, so in essence, he’s getting a chance to restart his career entering the 2018-19 season. He hopes to do so while also becoming a stronger leader than he’s been accustomed to.
“Just try to grow off the court as an individual and try to help the team,” says Knight. “They’re ready for a break and I’m ready to get going already, it’s all about us improving and trying to do what’s best here in Phoenix and give the fans what they deserve.”
Knight will be battling for the starting point guard role in Phoenix while also serving as a key mentor to the likes of Devin Booker, Josh Jackson, Mikal Bridges, and DeAndre Ayton. Along with now-signed Trevor Ariza, Knight plays a pivotal part in building something potentially special in the desert.
“I already know how I can help and how I can play with them. I know their strengths and weaknesses just from watching them all season,” Knight said. “Hopefully it will be quick building chemistry with them once I get back in, once I get back playing.”
Brandon Knight, who was once a potential All-Star with the Milwaukee Bucks, tries to rebuild himself right along with his rebuilding team. Injuries have continually derailed the previous two years of his NBA career, however after a full year away from playing Knight enters a newly-found role as a veteran.
While far from the potential he once had, he will serve a vital role hidden from the spotlight of Phoenix’s rich young core.