As the Knicks hit the halfway level of their season Monday night time, they paid tribute to their first half by going cold and warm throughout 48 minutes.
That meant taking a 17-point lead by the third quarter earlier than watching it slip away by the opening minutes of the fourth.
Jrue Holiday then delivered a pair of daggers in the ultimate minute, sinking a 3-pointer and one other lengthy jumper to assist carry the Bucks to a 111-107 win on the Garden.
“I noticed a championship staff simply sort of grind us down, chipping away,” Jalen Brunson stated on an evening when his career-high 44 factors weren’t sufficient. “We did not maintain up sufficient resistance to get that lead. Got to provide them credit score. We’ve acquired to be higher, however you have to give them credit score as nicely.”
In their first loss since Dec. 29, the Knicks (22-19) hit the midway level of the season on a down be aware after their earlier 17 video games featured an eight-game profitable streak adopted by a five-game dropping streak adopted by a four-game profitable streak.
After the Knicks led by as many as 17 factors in the third quarter, the Bucks (26-14) made a run to get inside 5 coming into the fourth. Then they wanted simply 2:34 to take the lead, draining three straight 3-pointers to drag forward 82-81 — their first lead for the reason that 9:47 mark of the second quarter.
The groups largely traded buckets for the subsequent eight minutes, with the sport tied at 97 with two minutes left earlier than Holiday left his mark. He scored 10 factors in the ultimate 2:23, together with a 3-pointer that put the Bucks up 103-99 with 47.1 seconds left and a contested jumper that prolonged the result in 105-101 with 29.1 seconds to go.
“We did not shut [the third quarter] out and we gave them life,” stated Julius Randle, who registered 25 factors and 16 rebounds however shot simply 1-for-12 from deep. “A staff like that with championship expertise, you do not wish to do this. Learning expertise for us, for positive. Coach all the time says play powerful with the lead and studying expertise and we’ll do higher.”
Randle and Mitchell Robinson considerably saved Giannis Antetokounmpo in examine with 22 factors and 10 rebounds, however Holiday performed the function of nearer successfully.
The Knicks missed their first seven photographs from the ground and fell behind 10-2. But they acquired an early present as Holiday, the Bucks’ defensive stalwart, picked up his third foul simply 4:28 into the sport, sending him to the bench.
Brunson rapidly put the Knicks on his again. The level guard poured in 18 of the Knicks’ 22 factors in the primary quarter, permitting them to move into the second tied 22-22.
They did so regardless of recording zero assists via the primary 12 minutes and Randle — who had largely been crushing first quarters of late — taking pictures simply 1-for-12 from the sector, together with 0-for-8 from past the arc.
Immanuel Quickley (23 factors) then took the baton from Brunson in the second quarter, scoring the Knicks’ first six factors and happening to drop 13 factors in the quarter. He bookended a 7-1 run with a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws that helped the Knicks create some separation earlier than going into halftime up 51-46.
In the third quarter, Quickley scored 5 straight factors to spark a 13-1 run because the Knicks opened up a 70-53 lead.
But the Bucks made a cost again into the sport to shut out the third quarter, utilizing a 12-3 run to drag inside 78-73 heading to the fourth, the place they closed out the win.
“Obviously they’ve probably the greatest gamers to play this sport in Giannis and Jrue simply being clutch as he’s, they simply would not go away,” Brunson stated. “You’ve acquired to provide them credit score. They used their expertise in opposition to us.”