Knicks’ ‘football player’ drawing comparisons to Iman Shumpert

“Dot, when you see him out there, he’s a football player,’’ Hardaway said. “He guards me every day in practice. He’s going to give you his all, every possession, no matter how tired he is. Built strong, athletic, takes nothing from nobody. That’s what we love.

“Definitely reminds me of Shump. They got that grittiness and desire to play defense.’’


Again, opportunity is vital in the Rookie of the Year race, and the rebuilding Knicks should have plenty of minutes to spread to their rookie guards.

While lottery pick Frank Ntilikina will get more attention, Dotson also has a chance to showcase his two-way game.

Dotson broke out during his senior season at Houston, shooting an impressive 44.3-percent on 7.6 3-point attempts per game. His 17.4 points per game were fifth-best in the American Athletic Conference, but more impressively, he led the conference in effective field goal percentage (59.4) for the second year in a row.

Dotson’s shooting was on full display at summer league, where he converted 48 percent of his 3-point attempts. He’s also shooting 40 percent from 3 through four preseason games.

The rookie’s reputation as a shooter is well-earned, but he also takes great pride in his defense. Dotson led a stout Houston defense in Defensive Win Shares last season, and he finished with an impressive 98.3 defensive rating.

Dotson and Ntilikina have a shot at being the Knicks’ backcourt for the future, and it could start this year.