Julius Randle Wills Knicks to Win. NY 106 Denver 103

Julius Randle was everywhere doing everything in the 4th quarter to will the Knicks to a come-from-behind 106-103 victory in Denver — NY’s first win there since 2006.

Randle was scoring, ripping down offensive rebounds for important scores or foul shots, playing phenomenal Defense, diving on the floor for loose balls and then passing for scores, stealing the ball for full-court drives — and letting out ferocious yells as he imposed his will on the game.

The Knicks were down by 10 points with 8 minutes left when Randle reentered the game for RJ Barrett, and took charge. He was helped by Jalen Brunson, the Knicks’ steadying force, and the tremendous defensive efforts of Cam Reddish, Immanuel Quickley, and Jericho Sims.

The Knicks withstood an offensive assault by high-scoring Denver guard Bones Hyland, who came off the bench for 21 points — hitting 3’s from everywhere, and slipping around defenders to the hoop at will. The Knicks also survived a horrible shooting night from RJ Barrett who was 0-9 from 3.

And in the end it was fantastic Defense by Immanuel Quickley on the final game-tying 3-pt try by Jamal Murray, which missed by a lot.

“The way Julius started the game gave us confidence that we were going to play well,” said coach Tom Thibodeau afterwards. “The way he finished it — his hustle; his defense, was unbelieveable.”

Randle had 34 pts, 11 rebounds and 4 assists.

NY improves to 8-7; Denver — playing without Nikola Jokic — takes its first home loss of the season and falls to 9-6.

1. Randle Wills Knicks to Win in 4th

The Knicks were down by 10 points with 8 minutes left when Randle reentered the game and went on a TEAR. Randle:

  • Immediately stole the ball from Zeke Nnaji for a Knicks possession,
  • Grabbed an offensive rebound off a Obi Toppin miss, and scored,
  • Grabbed a defensive rebound off a Bruce Brown miss, setting up a Jalen Brunson drive,
  • Got fouled inside and made 1 of 2 free throws for a 96-91 game,
  • Stole ball off Jamaal Murray and dunked for a 98-95 game with 3:54 left,

  • Scored on a finger roll plus the foul with 3:10 left for a 98-97 game, Denver on top (Randle missed the free throw),

After Brunson free throws put NY on top 99-98, Randle dove on the floor for a loose ball off a bad Jeff Green pass, fed the ball to Brunson for a dunk and NY was up by 3 — 101-98 with 2:37 left.

Randle then grabbed a defensive rebound and fed Cam Reddish for a jumper for a 103-98 NY lead with 2 minutes left.

Denver came back — as Bones Hyland continued to go nuts — making a drive and 1 for a 103-101 Knick lead, and then hit a jumper to tie the game at 103 with 1 minute left.

Jalen Brunson came down for the Knicks, operating in the lane for a short jumper — and missed. But there was Julius Randle AGAIN — getting fouled by Jeff Green as he was in position to grab the offensive rebound — and he was to the free throw line. Randle made 1 of 2 to give NY back the lead, at 104-103.

Good Knick defense by Jericho Sims got NY back the ball and Jalen Brunson was fouled on a drive — and made both free throws for a 106-103 NY lead.

On the final possession with 10 seconds left, Denver got the ball to Jamal Murray — who was HOUNDED by Immanuel Quickley and missed badly at the buzzer. Ballgame. Knicks win.

2. Reddish Terrific

Cam Reddish had another terrific game — defensively and offensively. He used his quickness and 6’8 length to murder the passing lanes, and used that same length to make more extraordinary drives to the basket — drives where you think there is no way and then you see there is a way — the Cam Reddish way.

Reddish led the Knicks in minutes played — 37 — and is entrenching himself as coach Tom Thibodeau’s small forward.

“He’s long; he’s athletic. He’s a hard guy to pass around,” said Thibodeau afterwards. “Just his ball pressure can be very disruptive. He can guard multiple positions. He can guard point guards — 1, 2, 3’s, 4’s, you can even switch him onto some 5’s.”

3. Brunson the Leader

The Knicks are a different team down the stretch than they’ve been in years because of Jalen Brunson. Julius Randle won this game in the 4th but Jalen Brunson was by his side, steadying the team and Randle — taking the job of ball handler and distributor that Randle so often had to do the previous 2 seasons.

Said Randle about Brunson: “He’s so steady. I can’t say enough about him. He’s steady. He’s solid. He makes big plays when he needs to. Finds us when he needs to. He keeps me calm, which is a task in itself.”

4. Jericho Beasted Again

Jericho Sims was another big part of the win. His Defense down the stretch was terrific. His Energy all game is at a super high level — constantly working to body people under the basket, and out-leaping people for rebounds.

5. Quickley Great D

Immanuel Quickley’s defense on the final play was the final deciding factor — denying Jamaal Murray a good shot. Quickley has become a tremendous defender, and rebounder, and in this game, scored 6 points on 2-5 shooting with 5 rebounds and 6 assists in 28 minutes for a +11.

6. Barrett Horrible Shooting Night

The Knicks would not have needed Julius Randle’s heroics had RJ Barrett had a halfway decent shooting night — but he was horrible — 0-9 from 3 for a 4-18 overall (3-4 in free throws). Barrett was under the weather with a bad cold for the 2nd straight game — and the broadcast crew of Wally Sczerbiak and Mike Breen kept mentioning this. Afterwards, Barrett told the press he felt horrible but wanted to play.

Barrett played 31 minutes and was a -18.

7. Rose Played Well

Derrick Rose played really well — he was in rhythm, scoring, passing and defended Hyland well — shutting Hyland down when he was brought in with Hyland in the middle of a scoring spree in the 3rd quarter. Rose finished with 13 points on 5-10 shooting in 17 minutes for a +2.

Isaiah Hartenstein was the other Knick that played in Thiboeau’s short 8-man rotation — and he played well; blocking a key shot in the 4th quarter.

The Boxscore


Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.