SALT LAKE CITY — There wasn’t any garbage time Saturday night at the newly named Crypto.com Arena when the Knicks battled the Lakers in a roller-coaster contest.
That means Cam Reddish sat. Reddish sat through regulation. And he sat through overtime in what eventually became a 122-115 Hollywood heartbreaker to the Lakers.
Since suiting up and playing five minutes in his Knicks debut against the Clippers — when point guard Kemba Walker took a rest day — Reddish has either not played or been a fourth-quarter filler in a blowout.
He has been activated for seven games but has not played in four of them entering Monday’s game in Utah. He has made no impact because Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau won’t find a spot in his tight rotation for the former Duke star.
Word around the league is when Knicks president Leon Rose moved to strike a deal with Atlanta on Jan. 15, the head coach wasn’t all-in on the move.
“From my understanding, Thibs didn’t want him and they did it anyway,’’ said an NBA source who has been in contact with Knicks brass.
That would seem an interesting tidbit considering the trade deadline is Thursday and team brass, according to a source, has looked to clear out a player to open space for Reddish.
Walker is the likeliest to be on the move. Walker’s removal would switch wingman Alec Burks to full-time point guard. However, with Derrick Rose expected to return soon after the All-Star break, the Reddish squeeze might be on again.
At the trade deadline, under collective bargaining agreement rules, Reddish can’t be aggregated in a deal. He can only be traded solo.
Ironically, Reddish, the No. 10 pick of the 2019 draft, asked for a trade before the season began from the Hawks because he wanted more minutes. He was averaging 23.4 minutes per game with Atlanta.
However, another NBA personnel man who spoke with the Hawks about Reddish said the issue felt larger.
“It goes beyond wanting more minutes,’’ he said. “Cam thinks he should be the No. 1 option on any team. It’s good to be confident, but there was feelings he wanted things handed to him.’’
Hawks GM Travis Schlenk made a point to say he traded Reddish with an eye on the best deal and not the best situation for Reddish.
The Hawks received former lottery pick Kevin Knox, who filled in ably for five games when Bogdan Bogdanovic was hurt. In addition, the Hawks, who had won eight of 10 games entering Sunday’s game against the Mavericks, received a protected 2022 first-round pick that may convey this June because of the Hornets’ 28-26 record.
Reddish has stayed patient. He recently said he didn’t expect big minutes upon his arrival. But he probably didn’t expect a shutdown either.