The Knicks have improved dramatically under first-year manager Tom Thibodeau, winning 18 of their first 35 games after taking 60 to reach the win total last season.
Take it from a member of their team 21-45 in 2019-20, a player who was on the wrong side of Sunday’s 109-90 in Detroit.
“It starts with work,” Pistons guard Wayne Ellington said when asked about the Knicks after the game. “Those guys, I was in New York last year, and I was talking to Julius Randle before the game, and he said to me, ‘Man, it’s completely different, it’s night and day.’
“Just our approach, our coming mentality, how Thibs makes those guys work and how he makes them compete on the pitch. It is a process. They have many of the same guys they had last year. Those young guys have taken a step forward and are learning to play and win. And it’s showing “.