Knicks rookie shooting guard Damyean Dotson wears the same “21,’’ has similar facial features, strong build and the same agent in Happy Walters.
Oh, and one more trait. Dotson also plays defense like former Knicks first-round pick Iman Shumpert.
Tim Hardaway Jr. has noticed the parallels. He played a season-and-a-half with 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.’’
Hearing the Shumpert comparison was a delight.
“Defensewise, he’s a great defender,’’ Dotson said of the Cavaliers guard. “I’ll take that all day. I keep working on it — whatever I can do to get on the court. Defense is one of my main focuses right now because I know defense has set me apart from a lot of guys.”
Hardaway called him “a sponge.’’ Coach Jeff Hornacek is paying attention to the man the team calls “Dot.”
“Some guys, you’re going, ‘I hope he makes [the shot]’,’’ Hornacek said. “But with Dot, you really think it’s going in. But I think what’s been impressive to the coaches has been his defense. Especially one-on-one. He can get after it.”