This game should feature a flurry of long range shots. New York and Atlanta rank 10th and 11th in three-point attempts, respectively. In their first meeting of the season, both teams made a little under half their attempts from the floor, but New York bested Atlanta beyond the arc, 46% to 38%.
The Hawks can be a little hard to predict. They lost two games to start the season, then won four straight, and have alternated over the last four. Quin Snyder’s crew is a fast-paced bunch (third in the league) and can light up the scoreboard (120.9 ppg, fourth in the NBA). In his first full-year as coach, Snyder makes the most of what’s available. His team has yet to lose by double-digits, and most recently they outlasted the Pistons, 126-120. Although a bottom third-team defensively (21st of 30), their +3.5 Net Rating qualifies for ninth in the league. Not a FAFO sort of team, ya dig?
Meanwhile, the Knicks have been a team on the rise. Solid defense had sustained them over a shooting slump that started their season. Over the last four games, which included a three-game win streak, the offense finally caught up: the team made 47% of their shots from the floor and 42% from downtown. In their last game, they ran out of steam in the second half against the Celtics, but, hey—without their rising star (it’s true! at last!), RJ Barrett (migraine), the remaining Knickerbockers gave a commendable effort.
Trae Young welcomed a child this week and missed the Detroit tilt. Last I heard, he is a game-time decision tonight. If he sits, the Hawks will miss his 24.4 points but can surely produce buckets elsewhere. His backcourt running mate Dejounte Murray, averaging 22.9 points, six assists, and 4.6 rebounds this season, racked up 32 points and 10 assists to carry the team againt the Pistons.
Projected Knicks Starters
- Jalen Brunson: 22.6 PPG, 4.3 APG, and 3.3 RPG, 42%/43%/82%
- Quentin Grimes: 7.8 PPG, 1.4 RPG, and 1.1 APG, 44%/40%/0%
- RJ Barrett: 22.6 PPG, 3.4 RPG, and 3.1 APG, 49%/50%/85% [UPDATE: Stefan Bondy reports that RJ will miss the game with a migraine, so Josh Hart will likely replace him.]
- Julius Randle: 18 PPG, 10.3 RPG, and 4.9 APG, 34%/26%/70%
- Mitchell Robinson: 11.4 RPG, 6.6 PPG, and 1.4 SPG, 54%/0%/40%
Projected Hawks Starters
- Trae Young: 24.4 PPG, 10.2 APG, and 2.9 RPG, 36%/29%/90%
- Dejounte Murray: 22.9 PPG, six APS, and 4.6 RPG, 50%/41%/85%
- DeAndre Hunter: 14 PPG, 4.1 RPG, and 1.7 APG, 44%/34%/79%
- Jalen Johnson: 14.4 PPG, eight RPG, and 2.4 APG, 60%/39%/68%
- Clint Capela: 10.4 RPG, 9.7 PPG, and 1.6 BPG, 58%/0%/71%
Weird fact: Quentin Grimes has attempted (and missed) only one free-throw this season, on opening night against the Celtics. That’s over 220 minutes without a free-throw. What are the odds he steps to the stripe tonight?
After averaging on 13.2 points over the first five games of the season, Julius Randle has improved to 22.8 points, 10.4 rebounds, and 4.6 assists over the last five. He just missed a triple-double (17/12/9) in the first meeting with Atlanta. Look for him—and Mitchell Robinson—to feast on these fowl again tonight. Prediction: Knicks by +4.
Who: New York Knicks at Atlanta Hawks
When: 7:30 pm EST, Monday, Nov. 15
Where: State Farm Arena, Atlanta, GA
Watch: MSG Network, NBA TV