The Knicks were surprisingly leading as the fourth quarter began, but Kevin Durant caught fire and led the Warriors to a 128-100 win at MSG. >> Read more
Things to know about tonight's game...
1) Durant heard an MSG crowd go crazy when his name was called out for starting lineups, and he certainly put on a show. The Knicks' free agent target poured in a team-high 41 points on a very impressive 17-for-24 shooting, including five three-pointers. Durant was unguardable all night long, but the fourth quarter was where he took over with more than 20 of his points. Though it resulted in a Knicks loss, fans had to like what they saw from the player they wish will be in MSG more often next season.
2) Frank Ntilikina worked on his jumper all offseason, and it paid off Friday against a Warriors squad that loves to chuck it from beyond the arc. He hit a career-high three three-balls on six attempts on his way to a career-high 17 points -- 13 of which came in the first half. In his first start at point guard this season, Ntilikina may have solidified that spot for next game.
3) Tim Hardaway Jr. had another great game, scoring 24 points with four assists as well. He was a main reason the Knicks tied the game at 53 to end the first half with five straight points.
4) Enes Kanter, who was relegated to a reserve role on Friday night, came off the bench and scored eight points and grabbed 12 rebounds.
5) Damyean Dotson started and scored 12 points, including two three-pointers, while grabbing seven rebounds. He played more than 29 minutes, which was third-most on the team
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Some players just cannot be stopped, and Kevin Durant is usually one of those players. He was knocking down every shot in the fourth quarter to hand the Knicks their fifth loss of the season in six games. The fourth quarter truly showed you just how much better the Warriors are than the Knicks, which we all knew already.
The Knicks fought them hard through three quarters, but they don't have guys that can close games out. They are wildly inconsistent offensively, and trying to stop Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and company is essentially impossible.
The biggest bright spot for the Knicks was Frank Ntilikina, who played quite possibly the best game of his NBA career tonight. Ntilikina looked confident and wasn't afraid to attack the rack, pump fake defenders, and make difficult shots.
Coach David Fizdale made some mistakes with his adjustments during Friday's game. He had a lineup that was a disaster out there for the first half of the 4th quarter, and Ntilikina wasn't part of it. The Knicks' once 10-point lead evaporated and it ultimately became a blowout the time he finally made a change. The adjustment to the starting lineup tonight was a good one, though. Lance Thomas shouldn't start another game this season and Ntilikina at the point played well.
That was a heck of a show by the potential future Knick at the Mecca, though. KD dropped 41 with half of those coming in the 4th. The Knicks need to do all they can to get him playing 41 games at MSG next season, because he is the kind of player to pair with Kristaps Porzingis. Knicks fans got a taste of just exactly how much of a star Durant is tonight.
That first step... pic.twitter.com/MXOQvZq4zg- NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) October 27, 2018
That wingspan 👀 pic.twitter.com/U3LsMTNFrp- NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) October 27, 2018
Got 'em. pic.twitter.com/W99h2NOyRK- NEW YORK KNICKS (@nyknicks) October 27, 2018
What's Next: The Knicks host their crosstown rival Brooklyn Nets on Monday at 7:30 p.m.