Playing in the NBA as a young and unproven prospect is hard enough. It becomes much harder when you're trying to live up to first-round expectations in New York, and you're from a foreign country.
That's exactly what Frank Ntilikina is trying to do, although he isn't really getting a shot. Head coach David Fitzdale has had the second-year pro's back,
When asked about his mental state, he grew tired of repeatedly telling reporters he was doing "whatever to help the team" and sighed, asking "How do I look?"
You can tell his benching is causing him to lose his patience.
The Knicks may not be saying they're the ones who are actually losing their patience with Ntilikina, but it's showing. He has not started in the team's last 11 games and did not see a single minute in the last two. Ntilikina was the last one on the court following practice, where he made jumper after jumper, causing him to ask reporters how he looked once again, before saying he needed to stay positive for himself and his teammates.
Ntilikina is still deemed as the future in New York, but wants to be treated like it. That's not so much to ask.
He's only 20 years old and certainly isn't going to learn anything as a healthy scratch. All those uncontested jumpers on an empty court can boost his confidence, but it won't make him NBA ready by any means.