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Caitlin Clark’s WNBA Impact Could Assist Jalen Brunson’s Knicks and Help Star Player’s Return

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Wait, since when did the WNBA start influencing NBA schedules? In a surprising twist of fate, the playoff hopes of the New York Knicks may get a surprise boost from the much-awaited debut of Caitlin Clark in the WNBA. Clark’s joining the Indiana Fever roster has caused a schedule alteration which could be good for the Knicks, especially for their star guard Jalen Brunson.

Caitlin Clark Indiana Fever’s home opener results in the Knicks-Pacers Game 6 being rescheduled. Game 6 was initially scheduled for Thursday, which was then moved to Friday. Thus giving the Knicks an extra day of rest between games.

Knicks battling fatigue and injury

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The extended break comes at a key time for the Knicks, who are suffering from extreme tiredness and key injuries. Jalen Brunson, the team’s leading scorer, has been struggling in the last few games, probably because of the foot injury that has extended for a long time given the very hard playoff schedule.

USA Today via Reuters

Donte DiVincenzo, another key player, has also been off since a hard fall in Game 4. OG Anunoby and Mitchell Robinson are already out due to injuries, hence the Knicks urgently need their other stars to get back into form.

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The two-day break could be the opportunity for Brunson, DiVincenzo, and others to get some rest and thus be able to recover and possibly have Anunoby back for Game 6 if his recovery goes well.

Pacers’ Adjustments Hampering Knicks’ Stars

Although the rest of the team will surely help, the Knicks have to also find a way to deal with the Pacers‘ defensive adjustments that have caused the problems for Brunson and DiVincenzo. Rick Carlisle‘s choice to give Brunson the bigger defenders has restricted his performance, making him shoot from hard shots and lower his release points.

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The Pacers have also stressed the need for the Knicks to push the pace, which in turn, will require the Knicks to use a lot of energy on both ends of the floor. T.J. McConnell‘s nonstop play has been the key factor in this, as he has been persistent in applying pressure and not letting the Knicks breathe.

The Knicks have to overcome these problems to take back the series. They can do this by making some tactical adjustments or by having the star players of the team be more active. The one extra day of rest that Caitlin Clark got from her WNBA debut may turn out to be a great help in this quest.

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