The Knicks didn’t lay down yesterday afternoon for the Warriors. They fought hard and kept it close until the sheer depth and talent of the Warriors pulled away in the fourth quarter behind timely shots from Klay Thompson (29 points) and Steph Curry (31 points) to hand NY their second consecutive loss. Even with Durant out, no one gave us much of a chance to pull this off. However, the game did have some positives for our younger players.
PORZINGIS FIGHTS THROUGH ADVERSITY: KP struggled at times to get his shot from the Warriors’ physical play, but he never looked discouraged and kept fighting. For that reason, he managed a double double with 24 points and 15 rebounds. This is significant progress because last year Draymond Green completely locked him up. The rebounding is most promising considering at times he was boxing out a bruiser like David West to get them.
BAKER AND HOLIDAY: These two combined for 19 points on 54% shooting off the bench. They were pivotal in keeping the game close once the starters sat. In his 23 minutes, Baker was a +10.
D-ROSE LEADS THE WAY: As has been the trend this season, Derrick Rose gets up for marquee PG matchups. The refs gave up him fair shake on calls, resulting in him going 10/11 from the charity stripe. Overall, Rose finished with 28 points. Unfortunately, the reason we normally lose when Rose leads all scorers is that the offensive flow sucks and others are frozen out. In this case, Melo only managed 15 points on 6/12 shooting and Lance Thomas, who’s played well as a starter in recent games, was held scoreless over 27 minutes.
4th QUARTER EXECUTION: With 5:56 left in the game, New York was only down 97-93. But the Warriors showed why they’re the odds-on favorite to win the title. Thompson and Curry had some dagger three-pointers coupled with Green getting to the line. Golden State also tightened up their defense to force turnovers.