Knicks Miss Free Throws; Blow Game. Waste Monster Barrett Effort. Chicago 118 NY 117

Jalen Brunson and Quentin Grimes missed all 4 of their free throws in the closing minute to Blow the win for the Knicks, as DeMar DeRozan hit a game winner near the buzzer, giving Chicago the comeback win, 118-117. On a bitterly cold Friday night at Madison Square Garden, with temperatures outside plunging to single digits as winter storm Elliott hit the Northeast.

The horrible loss — the Knicks Kicking it away in the final minute — wasted a Monster effort by RJ Barrett, who played like a man possessed all evening — 44 points on 14-20 shooting (6-6 from 3 !) and 10-13 in free throws, 7 rebounds, 4 assists — and some Massive dunks.

Barrett had put the Knicks ahead with a huge falling-away runner in the lane, 117-114, with 26 seconds left. But Zach LaVine hit a layup, and then Chicago fouled Jalen Brunson with 6 seconds left. All he had to do was hit his free throws. He missed both.

“Misses are part of the game,” said coach Tom Thibodeau afterwards. “We never got our defense established. It was an offensive game. It’s hard to slow those type of guys down, once they get their confidence going like they did. They had some timely offensive rebounds. We missed some free throws. So.. things can change real fast in this league.”


1. Missed Call Burns Knicks

The Knicks also ended up being BURNED by a bad call — with 4:39 left and NY up 110-106 Mitchell Robinson blocked a DeMar DeRozan layup but was called for a foul. It appeared on the replays to be a clean block, but instead of NY up 110-106 and the ball — Chicago pulled to within 110-108 after DeRozan hit both free throws.

Thibs had used his challenge earlier in the game on a Jalen Brunson play — and won the challenge. But the NBA does allow you to keep your challenge if you win it.

The play had Rob Perez tweeting it — zooming in on a fan in the background. That fan turned out to be Erica Ford. who thought it was funny she became singled out!

2. Hard to Win 3 Against Same Team in a Week

This was going to be a tough game from the start — as the Knicks were playing Chicago for the 3rd time in a week and a half — and with NY having beaten them twice in Chicago last Wednesday and last Friday, you expected the Bulls to come in with revenge in mind. Chicago had won their last 2 games in the meantime as well.

And Chicago came at the Knicks in the 1st quarter — and led 29-22. Nikola Vucevic especially came out scoring efficiently, and gave Mitchell Robinson a tough time in the first half. But the Knicks surfaced on top at the half, and led after 3 quarters and throughout the 4th quarter — a slight single-digit lead throughout. The Knicks look like the better team.

3. The Good News: Barrett

A lot of that was due to RJ Barrett, who Dominated and played with a fire in his demeanor. He looked pissed off.

Barrett drove the lane for short, efficient jumpers, or drives, or slams — and hit every 3.

He has now raised his 3-pt percentage to 33.1 percent on the season after a horrific start of the year.

He’s now averaging 20.4 ppg, 5.5 rebounds, and 3.0 assists on 43.1 pct overall shooting.

4. Randle Was Great

Julius Randle played Robin to Barrett’s Batman on this evening. Randle had 29 pts on 11-22 shooting (5-10 from 3), with 12 rebounds, and 3 assists.

Randle hit a HUGE drive-and-one with 1:45 left to give NY a 115-112 lead.

Randle also missed some free throws — going 2-5 from the line, which hurt in overall.

5. Poor Shooting Nights for Brunson & Grimes

What really hurt was the poor shooting nights from Jalen Brunson (5-15 from the floor; 1-3 from 3 for 12 points) and Quentin Grimes (3-11, 2-8 from 3, 0-2 in free throws), who was back after missing a game with an ankle sprain.

6. Quick Hit His Runners

Immanuel Quickley played well — penetrating and hitting his runners (6-10, but 1-5 from 3) for 15 points.

The Boxscore

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.