Despite rookie Allonzo Trier’s career-night, the Knicks failed to stop an explosive performance from James Harden and the Houston Rockets.
On Wednesday night, the New York Knicks fell to the Rockets 114-110 in a hard-fought battle that came down to the wire.
Down two with under 10 seconds to go in the game, the Knicks had the opportunity to tie or win the contest. In heartbreaking fashion, Noah Vonleh received the inbound pass and quickly turned the ball over, resulting in a breakaway dunk from James Harden to end the game.
Let’s take a look at some of the top moments from tonight’s contest.
Iso Zo’s Career Game
After an early dispute with teammate Tim Hardaway Jr. stemming from a bad case of Trier Tunnel Vision…
Tim Hardaway Jr. pops off at Allonzo Trier heading into the last timeout for the Knicks. He looked angry that Trier didn't hit him with a pass on a 2-on-1 break and THJ was open near the basket. Looks like some expletives were shared. pic.twitter.com/cZ42kunsBe— Mike Vorkunov (@MikeVorkunov) January 24, 2019
Allonzo Trier went off, dropping a career-high 31 points on 12-of-18 shooting along with 10 rebounds and three assists. Trier easily had the best game of his young career, knocking down clutch baskets and free throws to keep the Knicks in the game. After struggling for much of the past two months, Trier has now posted double-digit points in his last three contests.
ISO ZO FOR THE LEAD pic.twitter.com/hbbBMrr9vB— The Knicks Wall (@TheKnicksWall) January 24, 2019
Coming off a solid 23-point outing vs. the Thunder, Hardaway Jr. continued his positive momentum into Wednesday night, scoring 21 points on 6-of-16 shooting and four rebounds. After a dominant first quarter, THJ quieted down in the second half due in large part to Iso Zo’s dominant performance. Amid an up and down season, THJ posted back-to-back 20-plus point games for the first time in early December.
Over the past two contests, Hardaway Jr. has shown flashes of his early season form.
Timmy starting off strong tonight pic.twitter.com/3cS5TOnmeB— The Knicks Wall (@TheKnicksWall) January 24, 2019
Fear the Beard
The Knicks knew that in order to have a chance in this game, they must contain Harden. The reigning MVP averaged 35.7 points, 8.3 assists, and 6.4 rebounds per contest heading into tonight’s matchup.
Harden would not be contained. He had his way with the Knicks all game long, finishing with an NBA season-high 61 points, 15 rebounds, four assists, and five steals. Per usual, Harden continued drawing contact and getting to the free throw line, going 22-for-25 from the charity stripe.
It was easily his best performance of an already MVP-caliber season.
Harden seals the game on a clutch steal and drops 61 at MSG. ??? pic.twitter.com/a4NH2XTnjZ— House of Highlights (@HoHighlights) January 24, 2019
Fiz Gets Tossed
After receiving a technical foul in the first half, David Fizdale received a second technical with just over a minute in the game, resulting in his ejection. It’s not known what Fiz said to warrant his second tech, but boy was he irate.
David Fizdale gets his 2nd technical foul and is ejected from the game with 1:08 to go. Looked Fizdale's ire was directed at the refs. pic.twitter.com/ioylc9c7Eg— Mike Vorkunov (@MikeVorkunov) January 24, 2019
Fizdale’s ejection led to cheers from the crowd, as fans loved his fiery reaction towards the refs. Fiz’s ejection also seemed to spark life into the team, which cut its deficit and even took the lead at one point in the final moments.
Goodbye Enes Kanter. It’s been nice.
After falling out of the rotation a few weeks ago in favor of Luke Kornet and Mitchell Robinson, Kanter’s Knicks career hit an all-time low on Wednesday night. Even with Kornet out due to an ankle injury, Kanter did not sniff the court. Instead, the Knicks looked to Noah Vonleh and Mitchell Robinson to carry the load at the 5. At one point during the game, Kanter’s frustration could be seen on the court, as he stood away from the team during a timeout huddle. After voicing frustration regarding his reduced role, tonight’s game is just another step closer to the inevitable breakup.
Enes Kanter says he was told this morning by the Knicks he would start tonight vs the Rockets. He got a DNP instead.— Mike Vorkunov (@MikeVorkunov) January 24, 2019
"What they're doing to me is pretty messed up. I deserve better."
Kanter pretty much asks to be traded.
"You either play me or let me play." pic.twitter.com/EufOCAkidF
The Knicks are back in action Friday night as they travel across town to face the Brooklyn Nets at 7:30 p.m. ET.