Where do we begin?
A fierce series between the two teams concluded in an absolute thriller in Atlanta. Way back in regulation, the Knicks needed a 7-0 run to get back in the game with 2:31 remaining in the fourth quarter. After both squads exchanged buckets, Carmelo Anthony drove hard to the rack, past Paul Millsap for the game tying layup to send the game to the first overtime.
In the late stages of the first overtime, Dennis Schroder finished a layup to push the Hawks advantage to 113-111 with 22.2 seconds left in the contest. Anthony, again, buried a clutch fading jumper on the right side of the floor to tie the game at 113-113. Dwight Howard’s putback attempt missed the rim on the other side of the court, which led to the double overtime session.
With Kristaps Porzingis on the sidelines (fouled out in regulation) and Derrick Rose out with a sprained ankle, New York was shorthanded heading into the extra periods. A couple of minutes in the second overtime, Howard fouled out to even the frontcourt dynamics for both teams. However, the Knicks found themselves in a sticky spot, down 123-120 with 12.9 to go. Anthony was sent to New York’s bench with six fouls, which opened the door for another member of the team to hit a big bucket. Courtney Lee answered the call with a quick crossover at the top of the arc and he pulled from 26-feet, burring a monumental 3-pointer. The Knicks held on the defensive side, forcing the third overtime.
Both squads exchanged buckets in the third frame before Schroder got to the rim for a game tying layup and three seconds on the clock. Lee’s jumper was off and the home crowd was treated to an extremely rare fourth overtime.
For only the second time in franchise history, the Knicks participated in a four-overtime game. The last one occurred in 1951 against the Rochester Royals. Without Anthony, Porzingis, and eventually Joakim Noah, New York was down to just one starter on the floor in Brandon Jennings. The teams traded five straight long bombs before a Kent Bazemore layup with 1:30 on the clock to put Atlanta on top 139-138. The Knicks managed to tie the game at 139-139 and just 1:14 left in the everlasting contest. Millsap (37 points) hit a putback layup to give the Hawks a 141-139 advantage and a New York turnover prior to a missed 24-footer from Lee that ended the marathon. Atlanta captured the season series win by outlasting the Knicks 142-139 in an epic quadruple overtime battle.
Knick of the Night:
Anthony shined under extreme defensive pressure, which included double and triple teams for a majority of the night. The Knicks leading scorer recorded a season-high 45 points on 18-of-36 shooting from the floor in 46 minutes of action.
Jennings played 53 minutes, scored 18 points and dished out 11 assists. Lee finished with 17, Noah ripped down 14 rebounds, and Porzingis posted 15 points.
News and Notes:
Rose was sidelined on Sunday afternoon with a sprained left ankle. While X-rays were negative, the Knicks starting point guard could miss the next two games according to head coach Jeff Hornacek. Rose suffered the injury against the Hornets late in the third quarter and he did not return to action.
This game featured 23 lead changes and 21 times it was tied.
The Knicks will continue the road trip with another Eastern Conference battle on the docket. On Tuesday night, New York will face the red-hot Wizards in D.C. with all the coverage on MSG Network.
by Jonah Ballow