No Melo. No Rose. No chance. The Knicks came into this game without two of their best offensive players and were overwhelmed by the dazzling passing of Golden State in 103-90 loss at Oracle Arena.
To be competitive, the Knicks at the very least needed monster games from Kristaps Porzingis and Brandon Jennings. Unfortunately, the tight Warriors defense quickly showed that wasn’t on the cards for anyone wearing New York blue.
GREEN STILL A STEP-AHEAD OF KP: Porzingis had made much of wanting to improve after struggling twice against Draymond Green last year. This first meeting showed KP still has much to learn. Although Green had a bad shooting night (5 points, 2/12), he was a +18 on the night largely due to his assists (7) and rebouning (11). Porzingis airballed several times due to Green’s physical defense, and finished with a meek 8 points (4/15 shooting) and 5 rebounds.
SHARING MEANS DOMINATION: The Warriors destroyed the Knicks with 41 assists. The ball movement allowed Golden State to get repeated open shots on the perimeter and countless uncontested layups. Javale McGee got to camp out at the rim for easy lobs (17 points). If it wasn’t for Kevin Durant (17 points, 7/18) and Steph Curry (8 points, 3/14) having off shooting nights, this would have easily been another 30-point blowout loss. Klay Thompson lead all scorers with 25 points (4/10 from downtown)
YOUNG GUYS PLAYING HARD: The depleted roster meant a few guys got significant playing time. Ron Baker was 6/7 (13 points) in 23 minutes, and got a few compliments from Durant for his play. Justin Holiday had 15 points and Willy Hernangomez nearly notched a double double (8 points, 10 rebounds).
BAD TIMING: The bad game on Tuesday in Phoenix gives us back to back losses and drops our record to 14-12. The Knicks are still #3 in the East, but that position is perilous. Saturday’s game in Denver is now a must-win. We can only hope that Rose or Melo (hopefully both) will be ready to go.