NYK 116, MIL 111: Porzingis Scores 24 in Return, Knicks Shock Bucks in Comeback Win
The Knicks exacted revenge in the sweetest way possible. After a heartbreaking defeat on Wednesday night, New York battled back from 18 points down to even the season series against Milwaukee in a 116-111 road victory. On Wednesday, Giannis Antetokounmpo was the hero with a game-winner at the buzzer. In Friday’s thriller, Kristaps Porzingis returned to the lineup and the Knicks overcame serious adversity to snap a six-game losing skid.
Heading into the second quarter, New York trailed by just one point and then Milwaukee reeled off a 16-4 run to start the period. The Knicks managed to post an 8-1 spurt on their own but the Bucks quickly answered on an 11-2 run.
The third quarter was problematic for the road squad as it led to an 11-point fourth quarter deficit early in the final period. However, Ron Baker started the fourth quarter and the mix of the rookie, Carmelo Anthony, Mindaugas Kuzminskas, Kyle O’Quinn, and Porzingis put together a 10-0 run to get the Knicks right back in the contest. Porzingis’ sequence of two 3-pointers and a monster block on Antetokounmpo shifted the momentum in New York’s direction with 6:44 to go. Deep into the period, Baker hit Joakim Noah on a pick-and-roll for a monster dunk. Two minutes later, Anthony connected on a game-changing shot from downtown to push the Knicks on top, 112-111. Baker's heads up play to snatch a loose ball and find a streaking Courtney Lee for the dunk and Lee’s tight defense on a Mirza Teletovic solidified an improbable New York win.
Knick of the Night: Porzingis enjoyed a stellar night in his return from a three-game absence (sore left Achilles). The big man hit 9-of-14 shots from the floor, 3-of-4 behind the arc, and posted 24 points in the win. Porzingis also recorded three blocks while going toe-to-toe against Antetokounmmpo.
Notables: Anthony led the way in scoring with 26 points and hit the clutch shot as mentioned above. He also dished out 10 assists and grabbed six boards. Baker registered six points and four assists in the fourth quarter.
News and Notes: Derrick Rose and Brandon Jennings did not play in the fourth quarter. Porzingis and Noah fouled out late in the final period.
Statistically Speaking: After being outscored 27-4 in transition on Wednesday night, New York adhered to Jeff Hornacek’s desire to limit the fast break points. On Friday, the Knicks owned a 19-14 advantage in fast break points.