Knicks Give Fans a Gift on New Year’s Eve. NY 108 Houston 88

The Knicks started off slowly but used steady ball pressure and shot-making from Julius Randle, Immanuel Quickley, and Quentin Grimes to blow out the Houston Rockets in Houston, ending NY’s 5-game losing streak.

A gift to the fans to make everyone’s New Year’s Eve happy.

“We’ve shown that we’re one of the best teams in the league; we’re top 5 in several categories. We have to get back to getting our defense tight.”

“It’s the nature of the league,” said coach Tom Thibodeau afterwards. “You win 8 in a row and then you have some tough losses — last possession type loses. That’s part of it. It’s not what happened to you; it’s how you respond to it. ? We took a haymaker. It stings. And we bounced back.”

NY improves to 19-18; Houston falls to

1. Randle Led the Way

Julius Randle continues to play like an All Star, leading the way. This game: 35 points on 9-20 shooting (5-13 from 3; 12-16 from the free throw line), 12 rebounds, and 6 assists.

As his wife said on Twitter, “Stop playing with him!!!! ALL STAR.”

2. Quick on Fire

With Jalen Brunson out, Immanuel Quickley continued as the starting point guard, and orchestrated well and hit his shot — 27 points on 9-25 shooting (4-13 from 3, 5-6 in free throws) and 7 assists, with a +25.

3. Grimes Hit His Shot

And with RJ Barrett still out with the cut finger, Quentin Grimes took over as the primary shooting guard — and hit his shot: 8-15 from the floor (3-8 from 3) for 19 points.


And the Knick defense shut Houston down with on-ball pressure, and Mitchell Robinson dominating the middle. Robinson was coming off a poor effort against San Antonio, but in this one came out with energy from the start — 12 rebounds, 3 steals, 3 blocks, 6 pts, and a +24 in 33 minutes.

“I thought our ball pressure was a lot better which led to turnovers that got us in the open floor,” said Thibodeau. “Guys played very hard and very unselfishly.”

Miles McBride shot only 1-10 (1-8 from 3) for 5 points but added to the on-ball pressure and had a +17.

5. Fournier in the Rotation

Evan Fournier played for the 2nd straight game — and played well; 8 points on 2-8 shooting (2-6 from 3) and a +7 in 20 minutes.

Cam Reddish remains glued to the bench.

The Boxscore


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