Studs No Duds: New York Knicks demolish the Detroit Pistons

New York Knicks guard Donte DiVincenzo (0) celebrates his three point shot against the Detroit Pistons during the fourth quarter at Madison Square Garden
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The chemistry and discipline of the New York Knicks have laid the framework for establishing a winning basketball culture. The Detroit Pistons were on the card, and New York did a phenomenal job taking care of business in a dominant fashion. Donte DiVincenzo led the way with a history-making 11 threes, as Detroit never took the lead in this contest. The Knicks pulled away with a lopsided 124–99 win.

Studs: Donte’s Inferno 

Coming into the game, DiVincenzo was 18 threes shy of Evan Fournier’s Knicks record for threes made in a season. Against a more undisciplined Pistons team, DiVincenzo was going for the record in one night. The sniper himself had 13 points in the opening quarter before finishing with a career-high 40 points and 11 made threes.

Now, only seven made threes away from the record, DiVincenzo is set to make history in the next couple of games and set a new team benchmark for most threes made in one season. This performance from DiVincenzo was a great representation of the culture that exists and the personalities that cultivate such a thriving rotation. There are no fragile egos or selfish tendencies, just a game plan to adapt and a collection of players playing their best for one another.

DiVincenzo has had stretches of mind-blowing performances this season with the team in need and also dialed back to a focused two-way game when the Knicks have a healthy rotation. In the past five games, DiVincenzo has averaged 23 points per game and has made 25 threes. An average of five made threes a game in this stretch, the duality of DiVincenzo has been a gift from the Villanova-Knicks treasure chest. 

Studs: Josh Hart is always elite 

That gift kept giving as Josh Hart tallied his fourth triple-double this month and sixth in his NBA career. Hart joins elite company as one of the only Knicks to record at least six triple-doubles in a single season. The culture of the Knicks has allowed Hart to maximize his best skills, before playing for the Knicks he’s never had a triple-double.

Now “Mr. Intangibles” plays to his strengths and strengthens the team. Missing three of their best; Josh Hart and Donte DiVincenzo playing well above their roles has impacted the Knicks tremendously, and the season record record is indicative of the performances of both players.

Averaging 11.5 rebounds in the past six games, Josh Hart’s sustainability this season will be remembered, as he has been a focal part of one of the greatest Knicks seasons in modern history. 

Studs: Jalen Brunson is always on point

The head of the snake himself, Jalen Brunson had a calm 28 points and six assists against the Pistons. A methodical 18-point second half from Brunson sealed the deal as he and DiVincenzo combined for 37 points down the stretch. Sixth in the NBA in points per game, Brunson has eclipsed all narratives and headlines to lead New York, now only half a game back from the third seed in the Eastern Conference.

Players who have won the NBA’s MVP from a sixth seed and Jalen Brunson being the engine that fuels a short-handed Knicks team to the third seed should open the conversation for his consideration. Brunson is averaging 32 points and six assists in the last six games, operating as the ultimate floor general for New York en route to a 5-1 record.

Takeaways from the Knicks’ win over the Pistons

This game produced no “duds” as New York demolished the Pistons from the opening tip. The Knicks went on a 25-5 run in the first quarter and held a 21-point lead. Miles McBride is now on a four-game streak of playing 40+ minutes and scoring 10+ points, while Isaiah Hartenstein and Precious Achiuwa combined for 26 rebounds.

New York amassed a 31-point lead early in the fourth and still had Brunson, DiVincenzo, and Hart combine for 19 in the quarter to send the Pistons into retreat. The Knicks have upcoming games against Toronto and San Antonio, both below-.500 teams, and only a half-game back from the third seed, it’s all about handling business and being in the winning standings for the New York Knicks. 

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