The Knicks lost a grip on the game in the fourth quarter down in Miami, with Derrick Rose making a solid second debut versus the Heat.

The New York Knicks (11-15) came up short against the Miami Heat (10-14) this evening by a score of 98-96, marking their second straight defeat at the hands of the reigning Eastern Conference champs. New York had an opportunity to tie the game in the final seconds, but R.J. Barrett couldn’t convert a layup at the buzzer, spoiling their trip down to South Beach. A questionably officiated game and a poorly executed offensive game plan make this loss an extra tough one to swallow.

While the defense was solid once again, holding their opponent to under 100 points, the ‘Bockers couldn’t provide that same production and firepower offensively. The Knicks’ woes reared their ugly head in the fourth quarter, where they put up a dismal 14 points. All-Star hopeful Julius Randle had one of his worst games of the season, shooting 4-of-17 from the field and contributing only 12 points. Barrett had a rough shooting night as well, making only five of his 14 shots, including that costly miss in the final seconds.

Oddly enough, Elfrid Payton led the Knicks in scoring with 18 points but still gave fans plenty of reasons to roll their eyes and yell at the television, with his three turnovers and -9 plus-minus.

Two of Miami’s bubble playoff standouts, Duncan Robinson and Tyler Herro, played poorly tonight for the most part, to the tune of 19 points on 6-of-22 shooting combined, per ESPN Stats. Herro came alive in the final frame, however, knocking down a couple of clutch threes to boost Miami to victory.

Miami was also propelled by their usual suspects Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, who had 26 points and 19 points, respectively. Kelly Olynyk chipped in 2o points, including six first-half three-pointers, as the Knicks gave the stretch big man little resistance on the perimeter.

Return of D-Rose

In the first game of his second stint with the Knicks, Derrick Rose was good in 20 minutes of play, putting up 14 points and three assists. The former NBA MVP gave New York a spark off the bench and was active on both ends of the floor.

Rose was acquired in a trade from the Detroit Pistons on Sunday in exchange for Dennis Smith Jr. and a second-round pick. The 32-year-old’s first go-around with New York back during the 2016–17 season was turbulent, to say the least, highlighted by a mysterious incident where he went AWOL and his season-ending meniscus injury—a tough but familiar end to his first tenure as a Knick.

The concern surrounding the re-acquisition of Rose was primarily how his addition to the roster would affect the minutes of young players, especially Immanuel Quickley, who has been excellent despite not receiving enough minutes. Quickley and Rose’s minutes were pretty comparable this evening, a trend most Knicks fans would love to see continue.

Additional Game Notes

  • Rookie Obi Toppin performed well in his 11 minutes, hitting two of his three shots, including an exciting alley-oop from Rose. Obi has shown flashes recently but hasn’t garnered the opportunities fans would like to see.
  • Miami shot 39 free throws, while the Knicks shot only 16, a testament to how questionable the officiating was tonight. Regardless, it was an offensive showing to forget for New York.
  • With the loss, the Knicks are now tied with the Heat for ninth in the Eastern Conference standings.

The Knicks are back in action on Friday at 7 p.m. ET in Washington, D.C., to face Bradley Beal and the Wizards.


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