In Manhattan, mostly cloudy for the following week, with temperatures in the low to mid 60s. Chance of rain on Tuesday and Friday, and bring an umbrella for your Saturday errands.
Also: the Knicks will win twice.
Knicks at Celtics, Tuesday, Oct. 17, 7:30 p.m. EST
In their first preseason game, the Knicks hung on to beat the Boston Celtics 114-107.
This wasn’t anything like a typical regular season match since the Celtics rested all their players you could recognize by photo. The Knicks’ starting lineup had a strong beginning, jumping ahead early. Tom Thibodeau experimented with different lineups during the game; New York flailed and lost their lead early. However, the Knicks’ starters returned to regain control before halftime, and Immanuel Quickley drove the bus from there. P&T Player of the Week Mitchell Robinson stomped so hard he left footprints on the floor. Even Jacob Toppin contributed some fun minutes (enjoy ‘em while you get ‘em).
Other than their loss to the Knicks this preseason, Boson beat the 76ers twice. Take that cheesesteak with a grain of salt, though: Joel Embiid sat out both games.
The Celts are a tough team with all their good players active, but so are the Knicks when Josh Hart suits up and Jalen Brunson plays for more than six minutes. Tuesday’s game, this time at TD Garden, should be close, but the Knicks will win just to rub it in Jeff Van Gundy’s face.
Knicks vs. Wizards, Wednesday, Oct. 18, 7:30 p.m. ET
The Wizards underwent major changes this summer. A new front office detonated the team and offloaded Bradley Beal and Kristaps Porzingis for some not-so-magic beans. Newly installed big chiefs Michael Winger and Will Dawkins must be unfamiliar with the diaries of Danny Ainge. Their biggest moves were the acquisitions of Jordan Poole and Tyus Jones, the selection of Bilal Coulibaly with the seventh draft pick, and re-signing Kyle Kuzma for four years, $90 million.
Washington’s projected starting five for the season consists of Jones, Poole, Deni Avdija, Kuzma, and Daniel Gafford. Their best bench players include Corey Kispert, Coulibaly, Mike Muscala, and Danilo Gallinari. The Wiz have talent but will struggle in the paint versus stronger frontcourts, and so they shall on Wednesday. Mark it eight, Dude.
Washington won their preseason debut against the Charlotte Hornets. That might not be a great feat for a high school team with sprained ankles. New York out-talents these Wizards on paper and should do so in the game. An interesting storyline to watch will be if 19-year-old Coulibaly (6’6”, 230 lb) gets any action on RJ Barrett. Wizards fans are excited about the young French player. Other than that, any Julius Randle versus Kuzma pairing will attract my eyeballs. Remember when Kooz called Jules “too small” and got schooled? Reminisce below.
After whacking the Wizards, New York will return to the lab for a final week of fine-tuning, and then their season starts on October 25. Oooh, I just got a tingle.