Knicks’ RJ Barrett still dealing with lingering knee pain

New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett (9) dunks against the Atlanta Hawks in the second quarter at State Farm Arena
Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

A lingering knee injury did not keep RJ Barrett from making history in the New York Knicks’ 111–97 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday, but according to his admission, it will persist for a little while longer.

Knicks: RJ Barrett Looks to Battle Knee Soreness and Maintain Strong Play

As Stefan Bondy of the New York Post reports, Barrett said that his patellar tendinopathy that kept him out of the Knicks’ previous losses to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Milwaukee Bucks is still bothersome:

“For a little bit, yeah. Something I’ve got to deal with for a little bit,” Barrett said. “But continuing to get treatment and just staying on top of what I need to do and I’ll be OK. I’ve just been playing a lot of basketball. Things are going to happen. It’s OK.”

Without Barrett speaking out on his left knee soreness, no one would know. Barrett scored 26 points on an impressive 9-16 shooting from the field. He continued to show improved efficiency by going 50 percent from three and a perfect 100% from the foul line.

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Barrett Makes Knicks History and Comes Up Big in the Clutch

Barrett was a +13 on the game, good for second among all Knicks players. His activity in the corners and driving baseline helped New York juice up their offense. The Knicks outscored the star-studded Clippers 35-21 in the fourth quarter behind his 11 points down the stretch.

The cherry on top was the historic milestone he achieved. The 25-year-old became the youngest Knicks player to reach 5,000 points, surpassing franchise legend Patrick Ewing.

Knicks Hoping Dull Offense is Behind Them After Energizing Win

In Barrett’s absence, the Knicks looked lifeless. Jalen Brunson was carrying the offense but Julius Randle couldn’t shake himself of his cold slump and the supporting cast’s contributions came and went. If Barrett can power through his infirmity and replicate performances like the one he had against L.A., New York (3-4) will have a great shot of climbing above .500 in their next two games against the San Antonio Spurs (3-4) and the Charlotte Hornets (2-4).