David Fizdale
(Justin Ford/USA TODAY Sports)

There have been some questions about whether David Fizdale, Head Coach of the New York Knicks, is playing rookie RJ Barrett too much. So far, RJ Barrett is playing, on average, about 37 minutes per game. This is one-minute higher than what most starters play in the league. Fizdale was questioned after RJ Barrett played 41 minutes in the Knicks loss to the Kings. As reported by Mike Vorkunov of The Athletic via Twitter:

“He’s got the day off tomorrow,” David Fizdale said. “We gotta get off this load management crap. Latrell Sprewell averaged 42 minutes for a season. This kid’s 19 years old. Drop it.”

David Fizdale is citing Latrell Sprewell’s 2001-2002 season where he obviously averaged 42 minutes. I became a fan of David Fizdale after one game when he was with the Memphis Grizzlies. The game was after a playoff game against San Antonio Spurs when he famously said: “Take that for data.” and walked out of the press conference. I thought he was a decent coach as well. He’s a tough coach and the Knicks need that for any eventual turnaround.

As far as the load management goes, I full-heartedly agree with Fizdale here. THIS IS THE NBA PEOPLE. David Fizdale is trying to compete in every game and of course trying to do what is in his job description: win games. To win games, usually, you have to play your best players. In this case, that just so happens to be 19-year-old rookie, RJ Barrett. I never liked the idea of load management, I understand that we need to take care of players’ health and that it’s a long NBA season. But it’s so early in the season for load management. Sure, Barrett will miss games to rest, but that will be later in the season. I’m backing with David Fizdale on this one, stop the excessive load management.