Madison Square Garden was rocking, and the New York Knicks rocked the Cleveland Cavaliers, 99-79, in their first home playoff game in two years. The 2021 COVID playoffs weren’t even played with arenas at full capacity, so this was really the first full Garden crowd since Game 5 of the 2013 playoffs.
The contest was butt-ugly in the first quarter, which ended up a 17-17 draw. The Knicks were saved in that period by the damn near miraculous return to form of RJ Barrett, who shook off months of rust and dropped 10 of his 19 points in the period. He even hit a couple of threes!
Get us GOING @RjBarrett6 pic.twitter.com/lw3aNMxfBz— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) April 22, 2023
The Knicks started to pull away in the second quarter, as Jalen Brunson heated up. The Cavs bottled up the Knicks’ star PG in Game 2, but once he found the range, he smoked Cleveland with a barrage of crafty jumpers en route to 21 points.
Y'all better be hungry ️— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) April 22, 2023
JB is COOKIN ♨️ pic.twitter.com/cZ64WOfEdt
Julius Randle didn’t have a great night shooting the rock, but his defense was on point, and he got revenge on Jarrett Allen for that dirty foul at the end of Game 2.
GROWN MAN SLAMMIN pic.twitter.com/MBAukiW9M5— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) April 22, 2023
Immanuel Quickley returned to his point/minus god form, finishing a game-high plus-27. His work with Obi Toppin ended the Cavs’ night.
OH MY OBI @IQ_GodSon ➡️ @obitoppin1 pic.twitter.com/ACPnFitew7— NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) April 22, 2023
Recap to come. Lots more to come. Go Knicks!
Jalen Brunson daps up John Starks after the AND-1— x - KNICKS ON MSG (@KnicksMSGN) April 22, 2023