Even without Melo, the Knicks should’ve beat the Thunder last night at MSG. Yeah they got crushed on the glass but they were moving the ball like a hot potato, Langston Galloway chipped in a team-high 21 points coming off the bench, and we had a lead heading into the fourth.
But, for as smooth as the offense looked for 3 quarters without Melo, when it came down to winning time we couldn’t get the buckets that the stars, Durant and Westbrook, were getting. You knew it was it was going to be a bitch to find some points in crunch time without Carmelo on the floor but didn’t make the pill any easier to swallow.
I’m not for moral victories, especially when the game was within our grasp, but one major takeaway is how confident Kristaps Porzingis looks even when going up against two of the Top-5 players in the league. The books will show that he only had two blocks and one steal but his impact on defense was palpable.
The best part about his blocks, showcased by his stuff on Westbrook last night, is his ability to keep the ball in play giving the team an opportunity for some quick transition points. We might’ve been a -16 with Zinger on the floor last night but numbers always lie (eye test > everything), and what I saw from Kristaps last night was inspiring. And that’s nothing new because he has been nothing short of sensational thus far in his rookie year, but it’s worth acknowledging how impressive he is against the NBA’s elite.