The New York Knicks plumbed news depths of poopy basketball Monday night, losing to the hardcore tanking Oklahoma City Thunder in overtime at MSG. I don’t feel like rehashing all the gory details of this defeat, but I do have some thoughts I’d like to share.
- Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but the Knicks’ late-game offense was stanky butt. The Alec Burks-Julius Randle two-man game was operating at its usual level of efficiency — lots of standing around and chucking bricks late in the shot clock. The only bucket the Knicks made in the final four minutes was a Quentin Grimes fast-break layup. Congrats to Grimes on actually converting what seemed like the first made clutch layup in the last 20 years of Knicks basketball.
EVAN AND Q IN THE CLUTCH pic.twitter.com/KBVJ2K8EHw— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) February 15, 2022
- Surprisingly, I didn’t have much of a problem with the Knicks’ overtime offense. They generated at least three good, open looks for Grimes, who failed to convert. I’m a Grimes believer, and I’m convinced those shots will go down on most nights.
- Do I have a problem with their final play: a potential game-tying three from the corner from Immanuel Quickley? Lord help me, I don’t know. IQ has been in a dreadful shooting slump for six weeks now, and he was 0-6 on the night leading up to that shot. I’m very surprised Thibs showed that much confidence in the kid at that moment despite — Thibs has been giving him the quick hook a lot recently. He’s such a weird coach.
- Mitchell Robinson played 40 minutes with a bum ankle. Unacceptable.
- The minutes distribution for Cam Reddish was truly bizarre. Evan Fournier played the entire third quarter and started the fourth. Then, just when it seemed Cam was done for the night, he appeared midway through the fourth quarter for a brief three-minute stretch. He too is nursing an ankle injury, so maybe that played a role? Thibs is weird.
- It’s official: Kemba Walker is the new Elfrid Payton. Thibs has no trust in Kemba to close games — Alec Burks played the last 20 minutes of the game, despite providing the Knicks with almost nothing — but he will still start Kemba and play him 26 mostly ineffective minutes. We got rid of Elf, and Thibs somehow got himself a new Elf.
Happy 2-month anniversary to an injured Derrick Rose publicly stating that he hopes Thibs gives Deuce McBride the time to prove himself. https://t.co/7H36kPg6mO— Joseph Flynn (@ChinaJoeFlynn) February 14, 2022
- When Derrick Rose got hurt in mid-December, he publicly wished for more minutes for Miles “Deuce” McBride. That didn’t happen, despite Deuce putting up crazy numbers whenever he gets G League minutes. Play Deuce, Thibs. Just play him. I’ll probably expand more on this in another article, but for now: just play Deuce.