After a 24-15 lead in the first half, the Oklahoma City Thunder woke up over the final three quarters. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had 25 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists, while Hamidou Diallo scored a season-high -23 points in a 101-89 victory in Knicks vs Thunder.
Main Knicks vs Thunder Headlines
After their Knicks vs Thunder won, Oklahoma City improved to 4-4 on the season, which is somewhat a surprise start. To be .500 despite trading away Chris Paul, Dennis Schroder, and Steven Adams last offseason should be impressive. As for New York, it snapped a three-game winning streak to drop the team to 5-4 on the season.
Star players weren’t good enough in the Knicks vs Thunder
RJ Barrett played 44 minutes for the team and led the Knicks with 19 points. However, that was on 7-of-21 shooting, including 1-of-5 from three-point range. Julius Randle was contained, finishing with zero points in the first half. He had a double-double of 18 points and 12 rebounds but it was too little too late in the end. Plain and simple, the best players on the Knicks didn’t get the job done.
Beat by the worst scoring offense
The Thunder entered the game with the worst offense in the league (102.0 points per game). The Knicks were not that much higher at 104.4; however, they allowed the Thunder to score 121 points on them. For a team that has a defensive-minded coach in Tom Thibodeau, this is a black eye on the season.
Broken up in the fourth
Gilgeous-Alexander led the charge by making six of seven shot attempts in the third quarter but the Thunder only led by six points heading into the final frame thanks to a three from Austin Rivers. However, an 11-3 run put the team up 89-76 at the beginning of the fourth and the Knicks never recovered.
Knicks vs Thunder Game Analysis & Commentary
This was one of those games where the Knicks didn’t look as sharp compared to the past. Could it have been due to overlooking their opponent? Who knows? However, the team was sluggish even after leading by nine points at the beginning of Knicks vs Thunder.
A dud from Austin Rivers
Just two days ago, the key reserve on the bench had one of his best games in recent years. His performance against the Thunder was dreadful. When he was on the court, he gave the team a -19 rating. Rivers is supposed to be a jolt of the bench, not somebody that brings them down.
A bench boost
Hopefully, with the signing of Taj Gibson, the bench will provide more pop from other players. Gibson was waived from the team in November and was brought back to the team on a one-year deal. Also, Kevin Knox had a strong shooting game with nine points on 3-of-5 shooting from three-point range.
The schedule doesn’t get any easier for the Knicks. The team takes on the Denver Nuggets (3-5) on Sunday. The Nuggets played the 76ers today (Saturday). Before this meeting, the Nuggets are coming off a 124-117 overtime loss to the Dallas Mavericks.