Quick Reaction

Quick Reaction: Knicks 98, Raptors 126

Batten down the hatches. Don’t be throwin’ around black spots in the comment section.

NY Knicks 98 Final
Box Score
126 TOR Raptors

P. Siakam30 MIN, 31 PTS, 9 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 12-22 FG, 5-8 3FG, 2-3 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, 18 +/-

His game against the 76ers required a lot of attention to detail. He had to attack the defense at the right time, and be methodical in what shots he was creating. Tonight he was pulling up on the Knicks and yanking them out of the lane with nasty crossovers. He made it look so easy. Same as Anunoby, that length is a terror in zone defenses.

O. Anunoby33 MIN, 13 PTS, 11 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 5-11 FG, 3-5 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, 29 +/-

First double-double of his career, hit a couple triples, and brought that All-NBA defense. Loved the attempts to post-up any guard that he had on him when he had the ball. His length was of major importance to the Raptors as they leaned on their defensive range to properly operate their zone defense. Helped out a lot getting after it on the defensive glass, too.

M. Gasol23 MIN, 3 PTS, 4 REB, 3 AST, 1 STL, 1-3 FG, 1-3 3FG, 0-0 FT, 3 BLK, 0 TO, 2 +/-

One of the most unique players in the league, without a doubt. Taj Gibson was erased early on in the game, and Gasol did his thing as the conduit on the offensive end. VanVleet & Co. have really started to figure out how to use him in the middle of the floor, and even though the assist numbers weren’t robust tonight it was evident how much creation was coming from #33.

F. VanVleet30 MIN, 15 PTS, 3 REB, 4 AST, 0 STL, 5-9 FG, 2-5 3FG, 3-4 FT, 0 BLK, 3 TO, 3 +/-

Calm, cool, collected. Didn’t get the Raptors out to a superb start in the first quarter, but he kept with it. Similar to the Hornets game he did a great job of deferring to players who were easily breaking down the defense. Almost had a night under 30 minutes, too.

N. Powell21 MIN, 7 PTS, 3 REB, 2 AST, 1 STL, 2-8 FG, 1-2 3FG, 2-2 FT, 1 BLK, 1 TO, 5 +/-

Toughest game for him in some time. The pop wasn’t there off the dribble in a game that seemed tailor-made to allow his skillset to flourish. With Terence Davis II continuing to play at this level and Kyle Lowry’s return looming, it’s important for Norm to put this behind him and continue to string together quality performances.

T. Davis29 MIN, 15 PTS, 4 REB, 5 AST, 0 STL, 6-13 FG, 3-8 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 24 +/-

The hesitation from beyond the arc appears to be gone. He’s relocating aggressively, hunting down looks for himself, and attacking close-outs with fervour if the opportunity arises. How he went un-drafted remains a mystery.

C. Boucher26 MIN, 13 PTS, 12 REB, 3 AST, 2 STL, 4-10 FG, 2-4 3FG, 3-4 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 26 +/-

The 76ers was not his matchup, but man oh man tonight was. He towered over the Knicks ‘tweeners’ and flashed a higher shooting acumen than most of them as well. He’s shown an incredible ability to stuff the box score full of rebounds and points, but the assist total tonight is kind’ve incredible. The Louis Zatzman victory lap article should be coming soon.

R. Hollis-Jefferson23 MIN, 12 PTS, 4 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 5-10 FG, 0-0 3FG, 2-2 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 21 +/-

Boundless energy. It’s comical sometimes to see he and Boucher team up to keep balls alive in the air. Had a little trouble finishing against a Knicks defense that seemed more focused on staying home, than rotating to drivers, but he pressed them on the glass and defended on the other end.

M. Miller14 MIN, 13 PTS, 0 REB, 1 AST, 0 STL, 4-5 FG, 4-5 3FG, 1-2 FT, 0 BLK, 1 TO, 8 +/-

I’m biased! I love Malcolm Miller and he was the best player on the floor tonight! Jokes aside, he showed a rare flash of aggression and it was nice to see the shot-making dovetail with it. I’m firmly located on Miller Island, so tonight was nice to see, even against the Knicks.

S. Ponds6 MIN, 4 PTS, 1 REB, 2 AST, 0 STL, 2-3 FG, 0-1 3FG, 0-0 FT, 0 BLK, 0 TO, 2 +/-

First bucket of his career! Well done.

Nick Nurse

Constantly flipping between different zones to thwart the Knicks defense worked so well in the second quarter, he figured they might as well torture the Knicks with it the rest of the game. Kept the stars minutes pretty low.

Things We Saw

  1. 33 consecutive home wins against division rivals. An NBA record, and no small feat. This team refuses to allow competence to come near it, so much so, that I’m surprised they played on the same floor as these Knicks.
  2. The Boucher + Hollis-Jefferson minutes are quickly becoming some of my favourite to watch from game to game. Watching them create extra possessions and the eventual shoulder slump from the opposing team after they watch one of the two get to a ball they had no business getting too. It’s such a unique front court pairing for today’s NBA, and watching them succeed is terrific entertainment.
  3. Anunoby’s control when posting up is improving rapidly. It’s too early to get really excited about, but if it progresses a lot, that’s going to be a sneaky factor in a playoff series. If you load up on the others, Anunoby might come bully your small guards in the paint.
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