Knicks, in quest to bypass play-in tourney, want win vs. Warmth
The Knicks will face the workforce straight above them within the standings for the primary time this season Thursday night time on the Backyard, with all 4 of their head-to-head matchups in opposition to the Warmth coming over their ultimate 30 video games.
Coming off Tuesday’s extra time loss to LeBron James and the Lakers, the Knicks presently reside within the seventh place within the Japanese Convention at 27-25, two video games behind Miami for the coveted sixth playoff spot to bypass the 7-10 play-in event.
“Essential. Bought to discover a technique to simply recover from the hump,” Jalen Brunson mentioned when requested about enjoying the Warmth after scoring a game-high 37 factors in Tuesday’s loss to the Lakers. “Clearly, they’ve nice personnel, a tradition that they discuss on a regular basis.
“In order that they’re going to come back in, they’re going to play arduous. We’ve received to match their power and choose it up on the defensive finish. Offensively, we’re scoring a whole lot of factors. Defensively is the place we’ve received to choose it up.”
The Warmth have gained 17 of their final 25 video games after opening the season 12-15, together with a win Tuesday night time in Cleveland to inch inside 1 ½ video games of the fifth-place Cavaliers.
“It’s crucial. You don’t wish to be in a play-in recreation,” Tyler Herro instructed the Miami Herald. “You wish to really feel safety going into postseason. We should always extra give attention to residence court docket than the play-in.”
Brunson and Julius Randle will discover out Thursday whether or not both or each have been chosen to take part within the All-Star Recreation on Feb. 19 in Salt Lake Metropolis.
It will be the second nod in three seasons for Randle, who’s posting profession bests of 24.7 factors and 10.9 rebounds per recreation whereas showing in all 52 video games for the Knicks. It will mark the primary profession choice for Brunson, who’s averaging 22.8 factors and 6.2 assists in 49 video games within the first 12 months of a four-year, $104 million contract.