After spending his first two seasons with the Memphis Grizzlies, Ivan Rabb joined the New York Knicks as a two-way player. Throughout the 2019-20 campaign, Ridiculous Upside will follow the third-year forward’s journey through his first season with the Knicks.
While two-way contracts are an NBA contract, the deal isn't guaranteed and there were two dates that were watched. January 15 was the last day two-way deals could be signed and January 20 was the day the deals would be guaranteed for the remainder of the season.
On January 13, the New York Knicks made a decision to waive Ivan Rabb from his two-way contract. He cleared waivers and rejoined Westchester on January 25. Upon returning to the team, Rabb felt he had something to prove.
“Hell yeah. I just wanted to comeback better than ever,” Rabb told Ridiculous Upside. “I put a lot of work in the gym. It’s been paying off, so I’m proud of myself for looking in the mirror and doing what I had to do and getting better.”
Since returning to Westchester after he was waived from his two-way contract on January 13, the 6’10” forward recorded a franchise-high seven consecutive double-doubles. Rabb averaged 20.6 points and 13.4 rebounds on 63.3 percent shooting from the field in a seven game stretch. While third-year forward is a free agent, he isn’t focused on the call-up talk.
“Really, I’m not even focused on that,” Rabb said. “I’m just trying to control what I can. Try to win as many as we can down here. Like I said, just try to be consistent with what I do off the court and managing my time.”
Rabb continues to show that he is deserving of another chance in the NBA. He is playing with a fire under him after getting waived from his two-way deal where he has shown to be a valuable contributor in Westchester. Not only is he making a significant impact on the floor, but he attributes his recent strong production to his conditioning.
“I’m just in better shape,” he continued. “I’ve been just doing more conditioning and stuff, so I’m way more active out there and I feel like it’s definitely paying off.”
It is the back nine of the 2019-20 season and Ivan Rabb continues to make a strong impression on the court. He is a consistent double-double threat. Rabb makes an impact on the interior and is a strong presence on the glass, while extending his range. While the Knicks big man is shooting 25.4 percent from deep in 26 games, he connected on 33.3 percent of his perimeter shots in a six-game span (Jan. 27 - Feb.8).
In the final stretch of the regular season, Rabb was to showcase his consistence with his work.
“I just want to continue to be consistent with my work,” Rabb said. “Get my workouts in the morning before practice then at night doing stuff just to continue to get better throughout the year and just keep pushing myself and expecting consistency from myself and the team.”