In the latest edition of the New York Knicks vs Cavaliers, the franchise used an iron five starting rotation to hand the Cavaliers their first loss of the season. Two members of the Knicks played over 40 minutes, while RJ Barrett played 39 in a 95-86 win over the Cavs. Julius Randle continued to play like an All-Star with a triple-double of 28 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 assists as the Knicks pulled to .500 on the season with a 2-2 overall record.
Main New York Knicks vs Cavaliers Headlines
Only three members of the bench played in the game for New York. The Knicks used a 29-15 lead after the first quarter to provide separation and were able to hang on as the Cavaliers battled over the final three quarters.
The Starters Came Through
Reggie Bullock (17 points) played 41 minutes, RJ Barrett (12 points and seven rebounds) played 39 minutes, while Elfird Payton (14 points, eight rebounds, seven assists) played 36 minutes. Mitchell Robinson nearly had a double-double with nine points and 10 rebounds. Each member of the bench played 16 minutes apiece. The starters hopefully get tomorrow off.
Kevin Knox was an Efficient in New York Knick vs. Cavaliers
Knox made both three-point field goals as he finished with six points, but what was more impressive was his plus/minus rating. Knox led all Knicks with a rating of +14. A lot of that had to do with shot selection. If Knox can be efficient in limited spurts, he can carve out a role each night for this team.
Andre Drummond was a Monster
Drummond is a former rebounding leader for a reason. Drummond finished the game with 18 points and 17 rebounds. He also threw in six blocks. Drummond is making a case for “way too early selection for All-Star.” Altogether, he was a fiend on the floor.
NY Knicks Game Analysis & Commentary
One honorable mention headline to keep in mind was that the Cavaliers were without Kevin Love. He underwent an MRI on a leg injury that he sustained on Sunday.
Cavs Backcourt was Stifled
Collin Sexton and Darius Garland were held in check by the NY Knicks defense. The duo combined to shoot 12-of-35 from the field with 35 points. That included a three-point shooting night of 4-of-12. The Knicks needed to take these two guards out of the equation and that was exactly what the defense did.
Did Thibs Find the Real Julius Randle?
The Los Angeles Lakers wanted this product. The New Orleans Pelicans saw glimpses of this product. The New York Knicks are getting the product. After Randle’s triple-double, that pushes his season averages to 23.7 points, 10.0 rebounds, and 6.3 assists. The Knicks have not had a superstar since Carmelo Anthony. The Knicks haven’t made the playoffs since 2013. Did coach Tom Thibodeau find the raw talent that Randle has been hiding for all these years?
Looking Ahead After New York Knicks vs. Cavaliers
The Knicks played on Wednesday, December 31 against the Toronto Raptors on the road. It’s the second game of a four-game road trip. After that, the Knicks play at the Indiana Pacers and close at the Atlanta Hawks.