After going undrafted out of North Carolina State, the New York Knicks seemed to find a potential steal when they signed forward C.J. Leslie shortly after the draft.
Leslie had a pretty solid college career and had first-round talent, but couldn’t find any takers on draft night.
Being that the Knicks gave Leslie a partial guarantee on his contract of a reported $200K, Leslie was one of the guys that many felt had a roster spot locked up heading into camp.
Unfortunately for Leslie things haven’t exactly played out the way he may have wanted.
Leslie hasn’t impressed much so far and didn’t even receive a single minute of playing time in Thursday’s preseason win over the Washington Wizards.
That alone seems like Leslie’s fight to make the roster is an uphill battle. Add in the fact that Knicks’ head coach Mike Woodson called him a “project” and you can’t really like Leslie’s chances at the moment.
“He is a project,” Woodson told Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv. “No doubt about that. Right now the game is somewhat quick for him in terms of catching on to what we’re doing. I’ve seen that over the years since I’ve been coaching, a lot of young guys they struggle early because you throw so many things at them, it’s too fast. So we’re trying to slow it down a little a bit, spend more time with him in the classroom.”
There’s no doubting that Leslie has some talent, but he may be a year or two away from having that talent catch up with the speed of the NBA game.
Hopefully the Knicks can sneak Leslie onto their D-League affiliate and keep an eye on him for the future, because right now it doesn’t appear that Leslie can help this Knicks team right now.
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