Alec Burks’ “Poor-Man’s Kobe” Monster Game Lifts Knicks. NY 94 Detroit 85

In what ended up being one of the better Knick wins of the year, Alec Burks put on his best “Poor Man’s Kobe Bryant” game in wrecking the Pistons in the 4th quarter to lead NY to the 94-85 win in Detroit on a Wednesday night.

The Knicks were cruising with a 48-41 halftime lead in a game they were supposed to win – with the 5-27 Pistons missing many of their key players due to COVID protocol – but Detroit surprised the Knicks by blowing them off the court in the 3rd quarter – outscoring them 25-4 to open the period to take a 14-point lead. But NY and Burks found a way to come right back at the end of the 3rd and 4th to win easily.

1. Burks = “Poor Man’s Kobe”

Alec Burks reminds you of Kobe Bryant in his body movement and play – his baseline drives, ability to score in any which way underneath, fade-away jumpers, and defense. In this game Burks put up a monster game Kobe would be proud off – taking over in the 4th.

Burks hit 3’s, drives, short jumpers, defended, stole the ball, grabbed big rebounds – and carried the Knicks. He had 34 points on 12-17 shooting (5-8 from 3, 5-5 in free throws), 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals, and a +28.

2. Detroit Overwhelms NY in the 3rd

Hamidou Diallo and Saiddiq Bey devoured the Knicks in the 3rd quarter. The Pistons played with an energy that NY’s starters did not match, and Diallo and Bey were hitting every shot they took. Diallo – a 6’5 guard and 2nd round pick by Brooklyn out of Kentucky in 2018 — finished with 31 points on 13-19 shooting (1-2 from 3) and Bey – the 6’7 forward out of Villanova — had 32 points on 9-19 shooting (6-13 from 3).

3. Second Team Plays the Fourth

Coach Tom Thibodeau put the 2nd team in at the end of the 3rd and NY began its comeback from the 14-pt deficit with 3:16 left. Miles McBride entered for RJ Barrett; Obi Toppin entered for Julius Randle; and with Taj Gibson, Immanuel Quickley, and Burks already in – the Knicks took off.

It started with Quickley getting fouled on a 3 and hitting all 3 free throws. Alec Burks hit a jumper and Obi Toppin dunked off a pass from Taj Gibson and NY was down by 9.

Alec Burks then stole the ball with 4 seconds left in the quarter, drove the length of the court, and made a drive AND 1 for a traditional 3-pt play and NY was down by 7 just like that.

Burks started off the scoring in the 4th with a drive, then hit a 3 after a Quickley jumper and in minutes NY had tied the game.

After that is was all green light for Burks and the Knick reserves. Burks hit 3’s and drives, and QUickley, Toppin, Gibson, and Miles McBride at the point played with an energy on the defensive and offensive ends that carried NY to the easy win.

4. The Starters

RJ Barrett started off as the main Knick scorer in the game – he had 13 points at the half and finished with 15, on 5-12 shooting (1-4 from 3). Quentin Grimes started as well but his shot was off (0-5 all from 3) and he only played 13 minutes.

Julius Randle also shot poorly – 2-11 (0-3 from 3) for 5 points.
Mitchell Robinson was playing decently (only 3-7 shooting for 7 pts but 7 rebounds in 20 minutes) but he sat like all of the starters for the 4th quarter.

The Knick reserves had amazing +/- numbers: McBride was +39 in 25 minutes; Toppin was +36 in 22 minutes; Gibson was +31 in 28 minutes; Burks the +28 in 27 minutes; and Quickley +27 in 35 minutes.

The Boxscore

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