It's a Career Year for Knight in Charlotte

Now in his ninth year in the NBA, Stanford alumnus Brevin Knight is enjoying the best season of his professional career. Too bad for him that it is happening in Charlotte, an expansion franchise near the bottom of the Eastern Conference. His sizzling stats combined with the Bobcats' eye to the future could be the recipe for a trade before this season is over.

Brevin Knight is leading the NBA in steals (2.48 spg) and assist/turnover ratio (4.33), is third in the league in assists (8.7 apg), and has upped his scoring average to a career-high 11.6 points per game. For the 5-17 Charlotte Bobcats, Knight's output has translated into a few more wins and many more close losses, as this young team struggles to learn to play together. Last night's game against the Denver Nuggets was the latest example, as Knight's season-high 16 assists helped the Bobcats erase a double-digit second-half deficit, only to see an 11-point fourth quarter seal another loss.

For the expansion Bobcats, the speed at which the young players develop into a playoff contender may have a great deal to say about the Stanford alum's future. With local favorite Raymond Felton waiting in the wings and the 30-year-old Knight putting together another quiet all-star caliber season, a continued lack of progress on the win column may bring a trade before the end of the year. So far, Felton has shown flashes of talent and has said all the right things about his apprentice role, but a full season of mop-up minutes may have him singing a different tune.

Meanwhile, rumors of a possible deal sending Knight to the Big Apple swirled in late November after New York Knicks head coach Larry Brown expressed frustration with the play of Stephon Marbury and heaped praise on the Stanford man following a strong game Knight delivered against Marbury and the Knicks.

"You know, Brevin got everybody the ball," Brown gushed. "He just made great decisions."

Knight was quick to reciprocate Brown's kind words. "He's always been a coach I've respected and loved playing against," the nine-year NBA veteran noted. "When I came into the league, he was in Philly, and he always gave me a great compliment on how I guarded [Allen] Iverson and how I ran the team in Cleveland. You never forget those things."

You can easily make an argument that for the last two years, Brevin Knight has been the top NBA point guard not hailing from Santa Clara. It may take one more stop for his body of work to be fully appreciated, but if that stop is in Madison Square Garden, don't be surprised if it happens sooner rather than later.

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