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Knicks 102, Cavaliers 81: Scenes from Immanuel Quickley lighting a defensive struggle ablaze

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IQ gets buckets.

NBA: Cleveland Cavaliers at New York Knicks POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks and Cleveland Cavaliers are similar squads: all D and no O. So naturally Friday night’s contest was a defensive slog through most of three quarters. The clear difference in the game up to that point was that the Knicks’ best players, RJ Barrett (24 points) and Julius Randle (16 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists), were doing enough to keep their club out in front.

Then, all of the sudden, it was Immanuel Quickey time. Quickley scored 20 of his game-high 25 points in the second half to propel the Knicks to a 102-81 win.

The Knicks pushed their third-quarter lead to 17 thanks to some late magic by rookie, who dunked on former Net Jarrett Allen and then appeared to stare down the big man.

IQ continued his onslaught early in the fourth quarter, and even swam a few laps for shits and giggles.

The Knicks kind of screwed around for a while in the fourth and let the Cavs get back to within 12 with plenty of time left on the clock. However, Quickley would put an end to Cleveland’s run rather...ahem...quickly.

Quickley theatrics aside, I thought the play of the game was Randle’s magnificent chase-down block of Cedi Osman when the game was still close in the third quarter.

Randle. Quickley. Barrett. They’re all good. Maybe play them together, Thibs!

Alex will have the recap.