Courtney Lee is not bothered with the Knicks 2-13 record over their last 15 games and is taking an optimistic approach to the development of the Knicks' young talent.
"Being in this league for a while you understand that's the best direction to go in, especially having a young core," Lee said in a report from Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. "And then just to look at the record it's not what anybody wanted it to be right now, so one thing you can do to take a positive out of that is just developing the young guys. If you put yourself first, it's very difficult. But I understand it's for the betterment of the team."
Lee has not played over the last three games. His last appearence was Dec. 27 in the Knicks 112-96 loss at the Milwaukee Bucks where he scored nine points in 23 minutes of action.
While Lee is taking a positive tone about the Knicks' losing ways, Tim Hardaway Jr. is unhappy with losing in general. Prior to the119-112 win over the Lakers on Friday, where the Knicks guard led all scorers with 22 points, he discussed the frustrations of the eight-game losing streak.
"It's obviously a tough pill to swallow," said Hardaway Jr via Berman of the New York Post. "Not one of us got here by losing ballgames for our respective ballclubs when we were in college or in high school."
To Hardaway's credit, he was on the University of Michigan team that made it to the NCAA Championship in 2013, but fell just short of taking home the title against Lousville in the Final.
"I'm pretty sure if they were put in our position they wouldn't want to feel this way," said Hardaway when referring to the Knicks tanking to get a potential shot at Duke's Zion Williamson or RJ Barrett. "Everybody has their own opinions. I'm not here to tell them what to think or what not to think. I'm just here to tell them what type of person I am and I know that it goes with the rest of the 14 ballplayers on this ballclub.
Contrary to Lee being unbothered by his benching for the betterment of the team, Hardaway doesn't necessarily see his teammates as rookies anymore.
"They've played numerous amount of games and a lot of minutes," he said. "They're more comfortable now as we all can see that. This second half of the season is big for them and their development, personally. But for our team it's also huge just so we could start this second half of the season on the right foot and make a push and build everybody's confidence up."
Both Lee and Hardaway have a different approach to how the Knicks should better their youth over the second half of the season, and one can chalk up Lee to being the veteran of this New York team by having the slightly more mature introspective, but in the end, both players also want to see Kevin Knox and company continue to improve over the last 41 games of the season.