Knicks’ offense sputters in 114-98 loss to Boston on the road

NBA: New York Knicks at Boston Celtics
David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Knicks were riding a three-game winning streak after an impressive three-game homestand at Madison Square Garden, but Boston was ready to defend their home court. The Celtics would stifle New York’s offense, and after some impressive showings in recent games, Boston would give the Knicks troubles as they were held to just 41.8% shooting from the field despite a 42.9% three-point percentage.

While Julius Randle and Jalen Brunson went for 25 or more points, it wasn’t enough as the Knicks fell back to .500.

Celtics Butcher Knicks From Beyond the Arc in Ugly Loss

NBA: New York Knicks at Boston Celtics
Nov 13, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; New York Knicks guard Immanuel Quickley (5) drives the ball against Boston Celtics guard Payton Pritchard (11) in the second half at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Knicks played well in the first two quarters, holding a 53-52 lead at the half before the Celtics took over in the third quarter, being outscored 32-23 in the third quarter. The star forward went off for 35 points, seven assists, and six rebounds, and specifically worked from beyond the arc, with five makes on 12 attempts. Tatum led a three-point attack from the Celtics that torched the Knicks, with Boston going 19-43 (44.2%) from beyond the arc and taking advantage of every shot they took.

As a team, they achieved a 50-40-90 shooting line, and while both teams put up the same amount of field goals and the Knicks even had more free throw attempts, Boston was simply able to capitalize on those moments. The Knicks’ offense felt the loss of RJ Barrett, and it was apparent that they didn’t possess the same scoring synergy that allowed them to operate well in their homestand.

Julius Randle would go for 25 points on 7-19 shooting (36.8%), making just two of his eight makes from three, although he did lead the team in rebounds (9) on the night. Mitchell Robinson had a quiet game on offense with just two points and struggled to rebound as he only collected six, and Kristaps Prozingis was able to get 21 points with nine of his points coming from beyond the arc.

Offensively, the Knicks’ best player on the night was Jalen Brunson, who gave the Knicks an efficient 26 points on 21 attempts from the field and continued to rebound offensively after a slow start to his season. The 27-year-old guard came into tonight’s matchup shooting 46.6% from the field and 43.5% from three in his last four games, and he’s starting to heat up.

Josh Hart and Quentin Grimes were valuable pieces on offense, with Hart going for 16 points on 50% shooting from the field, adding a trio of three-pointers on six tries. Grimes took all six of his shots from three, as he’s taken under just nine total attempts from two, getting up to 55 shots following tonight’s game. He did drill four of them, remaining stout from three and giving the Knicks more effort on the defensive side of the ball.

Immanuel Quickley struggled, making just one of his 10 attempts from the field, but adding four free throws without missing a single one. He did collect six rebounds, but he’d be the first to say that this wasn’t his best night. Isaiah Hartenstein hit a three, which isn’t a sentence I expected to write tonight, and Donte DiVincenzo was held to just five points on six total shots.

New York will make their second and final trip to Atlanta on the season, as the two square off on Wednesday night at 7:30 for a chance to get the Knicks to 6-5 and start another winning streak.

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