Couldn’t Snare the Rebound. LA Clippers 134 NY 128 in OT

The Knicks went on an 18-4 run in the 4th quarter to take a 3-point lead with 18 seconds left, and defended Paul George into a miss with 8 seconds left — but couldn’t snare the rebound which would have won them the game. Instead Kawhi Leonard out-jumped RJ Barrett and Jalen Brunson in a scramble to regain LA possession, and Nicholas Batum hit a 3 at the buzzer to tie the game.

In OT the Knicks muffed several shots inside and LA didn’t — taking the game 134-128.

A BUMMER of a loss for the Knicks who had the win in their hands — if they could only snare that rebound.

On a Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. A Garden that Exploded when the Knicks took the lead; but in the end the capacity crowd had to leave cursing into the cold 25-degree night air (had been 5 degrees in the morning).

“The comeback was great; we were in position to win. We were one rebound away from the win,” said coach Tom Thibodeau afterwards. “We have to come up with that. We have to put our bodies on people; they’re shooting it long, it’s going to go long; you got to get to people.”

“The fight was good. We can’t have a hangover. We have to get ready for the next game.”

The Knicks play next in 19 hours, against Philly on Sunday night at 6pm.

NY drops to 28-26; LA improves to 30-26. Before the game Vegas had the game a dead-even toss up. They got it to the point.

1. Barrett Piss-Poor Shooting Night

The Knicks would have won this game easy had RJ Barrett not had the worst shooting night of his season. He was at one point 4 for 19 and 0-7 from 3. Finally, late in the 4th quarter during the run he got it going — with first a floater in the lane, and then a 3. He finished the night 6-21 (1-8 from 3) for 14 points.

2. Brunson Leads the 4th Quarter Run

The Knicks were down by 17 late in the 3rd and by 15 entering the 4th, but a 3 and a deuce by Miles McBride and a 3 by Obi Toppin pulled NY to within 11 at the start of the period.

Quentin Grimes hit a big 3 and Immanuel Quickley free throws pulled the Knicks to within 6 but LA pushed the lead back to 11, 108-97 with 5:30 left. NY needed another run.

And got it.

Barrett woke up just in time and started the 18-4 run with a free throw and then after Brunson free throws he hit the floater and the 3 and just like that NY was down by 5.

Isaiah Hartenstein slammed home a dunk off a Brunson assist, Brunson pulled NY to within 2 with a drive, and then Brunson came down again and kicked out to Quentin Grimes for a corner 3 and NY’s first lead of the night.

The Knicks defense denied LA time and time again and after a Leonard missed jumper, Brunson came down and took it to the hole for a 3-pt Knick lead with 18 seconds left and pandemonium at the Garden.

3. French Appreciation Night

But then the final play of regulation — Batum — who was 3-4 on the night, all from 3– hit the big 3 on French Appreciation Night.

Earlier in the 4th, Batum didn’t get a call and Clyde Frazier quipped, “It’s actually French heritage night tonite. But they’re not giving Batum the call.”

4. Muffed in OT

The Knicks muffed several drives inside early in OT as Hartenstein and Randle tried to get tricky with passes to each other inside and turned the ball over. LA didn’t and took the lead and won.

5. Hartenstein & Randle Terrific

The Clippers have length and shooters — and hit a lot of 3’s and were able to roll to the hoop throughout the evening as the Knicks were clearly missing the interior defensive presence of Mitchell Robinson. But Hartenstein upped his defense in the 4th quarter along with Julius Randle — which was a big part of the 4th quarter run.

Randle had 28 pts on 10-18 shooting, 11 rebounds, and 7 assists. Hartenstein played with energy all evening for NY — 5 pts, 11 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 blocks, and a steal in 32 minutes.

But at the beginning of OT, Hartenstein and Randle each muffed drives inside with an extra pass to each other that resulted in turnovers, which turned the game south for NY.

6. Brunson 41 Points

Brunson was the star — 41 points on 14-19 shooting; this was the first game he played after being snubbed for the All Star game.

QGrimes played well as well (13 pts) as did Obi Toppin (8 pts in 13 minutes) and McBride (8 pts in 11 minutes).

Kawhi Leonard had 35 points for LA and Paul George added 30. Marcus Morris had 17 and Norman Powell 11, including a massive DUNK in the 4th quarter after getting t-d up for arguing a foul call.

The Boxscore


Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.