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Raptors 120, Knicks 105: Scenes from an Orlando bubble vibe in Toronto


New York Knicks v Toronto Raptors Photo by Vaughn Ridley/NBAE via Getty Images

The New York Knicks rang in 2022 with a 120-105 defeat to the Toronto Raptors. Omicron’s rapidity spreading and humanity’s stupidity helping it along combined to leave Toronto’s arena closed to any fans. In keeping with that spirit of absence, the Knicks never really showed up either, falling behind by double-digits five minutes in and trailing by that much throughout. The Knicks played without Julius Randle, Derrick Rose, Kemba Walker, Mitchell Robinson, Nerlens Noel, Wayne Selden, Jericho Sims, dignity, their best effort, or a snowball’s chance in hell of winning.

Fred VanVleet bent the Knicks over his knee in the opening quarter and spanked ‘em over and over and over and over. His 19 in the third highlighted a 40-point quarter for the Raptors.

Obi Toppin put up some nice boxcar numbers: 19 points, six rebounds and a career-high six assists. RJ Barrett made multiple 3s in a game for the first time since the last time New York faced Toronto, his last game before he got Covid. Ultimately, though, this was not a fun couple of hours. For the second straight game, every Knick who played had a negative rating. If you watched this game, I feel you; if you didn’t, I envy you.

Recap will come later. God bless that soul.