KNICKS SLEEPWALK TO LOSS
For the first time all season, the Knicks looked completely flat and unprepared to play in a blowout loss to Orlando at home.
Knicks Fan TV Postgame
MACRI'S GAME NOTES
I lieu of the smiling poop emoji, here are the things to take away from the first (and hopefully one of the last) one of those games for the Knicks…
- This one was never close. Sometimes, when someone writes that, they ignore the fact that it was actually close for, like, five minutes. Nope. Not tonight. Knicks went down 10-0, were down by 20 before the end of the first quarter, and despite a mini-burst of energy to begin the second half, never got it closer than 24. The lead ballooned to 34 at one point in the fourth.
- There was no one culprit. The team just didn’t have the requisite energy to compete with any NBA team, even a bad one like the Magic, who were without Aaron Gordon, arguably their best player. Couple that with the fact that they couldn’t buy a bucket, and are generally not a very good team to begin with, and, well…you get this.
- The Magic ate on threes they don’t usually make, but were more open than they should have been nonetheless. Nikola Vucevic did his best Wilt Chamberlain impersonation, getting whatever he wanted, with the exception of one stretch in the third quarter when…
- Mitchell Robinson, New York’s lone bright spot of the night, showed up big time, getting several of his career high nine blocks, which set a new Knicks rookie record. He showed flashes of a level of defensive capability that few bigs in the league possess.
- On the downside, Frank Ntilikina was benched for the rest of the game after being pulled six minutes into the first quarter. He missed all three of his shots, and reverted back to the out-of-sorts offensive player we’ve seen a few times this year. After the game, Fizdale said Frank had been struggling and he just wanted to get a different look. It will be interesting to see how they toe the line from here between keeping his confidence up and also not putting him in positions where he’s only hurting his development.
- Kevin Knox had some nice moments late, and finished with 15 points, aided by 10 trips to the line. He had a put-back dunk in the fourth that got the crowd off its feet. Another learning game for the rook.
- Lastly, Trey Bure got back in the rotation, taking Ntilikina’s place after he was relegated to the bench. He played with some decent energy and hit a few shots. Still, if Trey Burke is the answer for this team, someone is probably asking the wrong questions.
Highlights from the game