With the sport on the line, arguably the Knicks’ greatest perimeter defender was on the bench.
After serving to restrict Ja Morant to eight factors and 4 turnovers in the first half, Quentin Grimes didn’t get a crack at him in the fourth quarter of the Knicks’ 127-123 loss to the Grizzlies.
“Just the way the game was unfolding,” coach Tom Thibodeau mentioned. “I liked Cam [Reddish] a lot, too. That group was rolling pretty good, so just stayed with them. Whatever works best for our team, that’s what we’re going to go with.”
Reddish was a part of the unit that rallied the Knicks from a 10-point deficit getting into the fourth quarter into the lead, and he hit some huge photographs in his first sport again from a proper groin harm. Thibodeau additionally appreciated the concept of giving Morant a unique look with the lanky Reddish. Morant, although, ended up scoring 10 factors in the closing quarter together with the go-ahead basket with 13.9 seconds to go. He wound up with a triple-double of 27 factors, 14 assists and 10 rebounds.
“I thought [Grimes] did as good a job as you can possibly do [against Morant]. I thought Cam gave us really good minutes,” Thibodeau mentioned. “Between the two of them, I was really pleased with their defensive effort.”
Jalen Brunson was a game-time choice with a proper quad contusion he suffered late in Friday’s loss to the Trail Blazers, nevertheless it didn’t sluggish him down. He scored 30 factors in 36 minutes. He’s additionally dealing with a bruised proper wrist.
“I mean, it’s just bumps and bruises over the course of the season,” he mentioned. “If I can walk, I can play.”
Entering the sport in a deep taking pictures stoop, RJ Barrett was very aggressive, forcing his manner into the paint. All 10 of his first-half factors got here round the rim. He did hit two 3-pointers and completed with 22 factors, seven rebounds and 4 assists.
“I think sometimes getting those easy buckets, where you’re not working quite as hard for shots, [is important],” Thibodeau mentioned. “Trust the pass. Move without the ball. Screen off the ball. I think when you do those things, oftentimes those are situations in which you get easy scoring opportunities.”
Immanuel Quickley left the sport late in the third quarter with a sore proper knee and didn’t return. … Derrick Rose (proper toe) returned after lacking the final two video games and scored six factors in 12 minutes. … With extra wholesome our bodies, Thibodeau went 11-deep in the first quarter alone. Center Jericho Sims, regardless of his robust play of late, didn’t play. … The Grizzlies have been with out second-leading scorer Desmond Bane (toe) and wing Ziaire Williams (ankle).