2021 NBA Playoffs Game Thread: Knicks vs Hawks, Game 2 – Let Us Hope That Trae Young Listens to the Mayor

After Trae Young sliced and diced the Knicks up in Game 1, including hitting the game-winning shot, the Mayor suggested (for some reason) that Young should stop “hunting for fouls” and “play the game the right way.” It’s nonsense, of course, but hey, feel free to follow the Mayor’s advice tonight, Trae!

The newly minted Most Improved Player of the Year, Julius Randle, should hopefully, well, you know, improve over his performance in Game 1. If he has a superstar game, the Knicks could easily take this one.

Elfrid Payton is still starting. Well, that’s one way to do things.

Let’s go, even things up, Knicks!

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422 thoughts to “2021 NBA Playoffs Game Thread: Knicks vs Hawks, Game 2 – Let Us Hope That Trae Young Listens to the Mayor”

  1. It’s raining threads (alleluja)!

    Another game, another start for Payton…
    It seems we’re all waiting for Godot but he’s got better things to do…
    … sooner or later, who knows?

    Let’s go Knicks!

  2. Who do I talk to about my access. I am not able to post any links? I went to edit a post and the page told me it was “spam” when I tried to save it and deleted my post. I’m getting almost as frustrated about this as I am of Elfrid Payton.

  3. Now that Payton is universally hated by Knicks fans, I’m expecting a 15 – 5 – 5 game from him and Thibs to tell Berman to shut up in the post game interview. :-)

    (just don’t hold me to it)

  4. Nerlens has been warming up hard the last 20 minutes. Looks good to go.

  5. Deeefense:
    Now that Payton is universally hated by Knicks fans, I’m expecting a15 – 5– 5 game from him and Thibs to tell Berman to shut up in the post game interview. :-)

    (just don’t hold me to it)

    All we can do is root for it at this point.

  6. Totally off topic, but maybe interesting.

    My girlfriend recently had a brutal case of shingles. She was in a LOT of pain. My mother and father also had it years ago. So I decided to get vaccinate for it since my doctor has been recommending that I do so for awhile. I had virtually no reaction to the Covid vaccine a lot of people were whining about. but Shingrix knocked the hell out of me. The first dose knocked me out for a day. I had the second dose yesterday. I’ve been feverish, had chills, felt exhausted, achy and had a pretty sharp pain in my shoulder. I’m not even sure I can make through the Knicks game. I may have to go to bed.

  7. Payton has a habit this year of bouncing back for a handful of really great games to take the heat off him after a bad spell. Hoping that trend continues tonight. Wild how his form has yo-yoed so much.

  8. I’m at a recording session until 8:00 PST so I’m gonna miss this game. I’m with y’all in spirit though!

    Let’s win this one!

  9. Deeefense:
    Totally off topic, but maybe interesting.

    My girlfriend recently had a brutal case of shingles.She was in a LOT of pain. My mother and father also had it years ago.So I decided to get vaccinate for it since my doctor has been recommending that I do so for awhile. I had virtually no reaction to the Covid vaccine a lot of people were whining about. but Shingrix knocked the hell out of me. The first dose knocked me out for a day.I had the second dose yesterday. I’ve been feverish, had chills, felt exhausted, achy and had a pretty sharp pain in my shoulder. I’m not even sure I can make through the Knicks game. I may have to go to bed.

    Interesting because I’m thinking of asking my doctor for it next week.

  10. Dodekatheon has spoken!
    Hermes told me that their help would be revealed via the presence of a demigod: Francules!

  11. Would be nice if the Knicks made a statement tonight and got a relatively easy win but at this point dont care how they pull it off just want a win however they can get it.

  12. When I was a small boy, I used to pretend to be Michael Ray Richardson and Ray Williams – shooting a tennis ball through a bottomless shoe box that I hung over my closet.

    This team reminds me of the 1984 Knicks, where Bernard King carried the Knicks past Isiah Thomas & the Pistons in the first round. That team then gave the eventual-champion Celtics all they could handle in the second round. I can substitute Randle for King, Young for Thomas and the Sixers for the Celtics.

  13. I call it. Rose comes in with 7:35 on the clock.

  14. payton is killing us. All 9 pts in this 9-0 run involved him fucking up on D

  15. I guess whoever guessed Hawks in 4 on the poll wasn’t that far off…

  16. What is this offense?!

    Julius can’t just dribble into a corner and take fadeaways all night.

    Let’s go!

  17. I really do sometimes think that Thibs is trying to stretch the limits of appeals to authority.

  18. Randle looks like he’s pressing…

    we have two offensive zeros out there…not going to work …push elf eject button

  19. Elf can never play again, it’s coaching malpractice for Thibs to keep him in the rotation

  20. get RJ going to the basket and down low – would like to see him use his strength to absorb contact and take some close-range shots.

  21. Hawks on an 11-0 run.
    Julius Randle is playing like it’s 2019 all over again.

  22. Thibs decided to take away the floater by having Noel step on the screen rather than drop. That has opened up the 3 point line for the Hawks.

    Young is playing a very disciplined game. He is reading the D and taking what the Knicks are giving.

    Outside of one offensive rebound, Atlanta has only shot 3s.

  23. feels like we’re overreacting. went from drastic drop down to blitzing everything and abandoning the 3pt line en masse. hoping this is just the starting plan and we’ll see something more mixed as the game goes on.

  24. Part of it is execution, but the Knicks are being out coached. Didn’t expect to say it.

  25. It’s a backside double that is killing Randle.

  26. Randle has to just go at Capela. I know he’s afraid, but he’s gotta just go at him hard a couple of times and get that foul.

  27. Everytime Randle has the ball inside the 3pt line Capella is rotating to double. We still haven’t figured a remedy for that.

  28. It’s amazing that this game is that close.

  29. This feels like that Miami series when the Knicks couldn’t make an entry pass to Carmelo.

  30. KnickFaninChicago:
    Everytime Randle has the ball inside the 3pt line Capella is rotating to double. We still haven’t figured a remedy for that.

    Randle has to just go at Capela. I know he’s afraid, but he’s gotta just go at him hard a couple of times and get that foul.

  31. Barrett missed the bunny, but that’s what he need to do more of esp if he finds Trae on him

  32. I don’t think we’re being outcoached, ATL is very good. knocking down shots that we’re missing, and playing sound defense. We are pressing.

  33. The Hawks have trapped the Knicks at least 3 times at the baseline. The ball has to be reversed or sent to someone flashing into the lane.

  34. Capella’s isn’t closing on his double. He’s preventing Randle from going baseline. That’s the problem Randle has to solve.

  35. this is where we miss mitch… capela shadowing randle only works when our centers don’t put pressure on the rim…

  36. Z-man:
    I don’t think we’re being outcoached, ATL is very good. knocking down shots that we’re missing, and playing sound defense. We are pressing.

    Thibs cannot find a solution to the soft double on Randle. It’s a problem.

  37. GoNYGoNYGo – Gearing up for the playoffs:
    It’s amazing that this game is that close.

    This team has shown this season that they can weather runs by the other team. Hawks started hot but we’re only down 8. They need to make their move when Trae sits, and keep guarding Bog tight at the 3.

  38. We need Randle to be the Most Improved Player again next season, I think.

  39. Another lousy first quarter,
    and once again the bench must try to save us because the starters shit the bed.
    Randle is killing us.

  40. marechal: Thibs cannot find a solution to the soft double on Randle. It’s a problem.

    That’s on Randle, not Thibs.

  41. Players need to execute. Right now it’s not about game plan. It’s about them executing and us not executing.

  42. I don’t think we’re being outcoached, ATL is very good. knocking down shots that we’re missing, and playing sound defense. We are pressing.

    Agreed. The sets are sound, the Knicks are just bricking while the Hawks are hot from three and it’s only a seven point deficit.

  43. One solution to the soft double is to have Gibson/Noel set a screen for a perimeter shooter. That should generate open 3s. Or the center could slip the screen and flash to the rim.

  44. Trae Young should walk around the Garden with his middle fingers up in the air laughing his ass off.

  45. IQ played Young as well as it could be done, but Young still hit the step back 3. He is the only Knick with the quickness to stay in front of Young.

  46. Any offense will look terrible when the shots are not falling, so execution is the biggest problem. That said, especially when Randle is in, it feels like Thibs didn’t come up with creative ways to get him going or make it easier for him to make good passes.

  47. Hubert:
    do you guys notice any offensive adjustments from game 1?

    All frustration aside the Knicks are just missing shots and seem to be rushing everything on offense. They need to settle down and make their 3pters, sounds too simple but that’s really it.

  48. Congrats to those of you who placed a prop bet on Toppin scoring before Randle

  49. ephus:
    IQ played Young as well as it could be done, but Young still hit the step back 3.He is the only Knick with the quickness to stay in front of Young.

    I agree with this. Just let the rookie guard him and take it.

  50. Randle’s problem is his head is down too much when he has the ball. He throws a few passes he’ll start crushing their doubles.

  51. it’s not pretty but we are making a concerted attempt to attack the rim and it’s sort of working… if we can keep getting to the line like this we should eventually breakthru…

  52. yuck that possession where burks and randle swap places within the same hawk double team

  53. jesus these guys see Capela shading and they just stop thinking. It’s like Roy Hibbert all over again.

  54. I wouldn’t have minded getting swept by the Bucks but this is embarrassing.

  55. Atlanta is playing great basketball on both ends, they are disrupting us at every turn.

  56. BigBlueAL:
    I wouldn’t have minded getting swept by the Bucks but this is embarrassing.

    Only because you are underestimating the Hawks.

  57. djphan:
    it’s not pretty but we are making a concerted attempt to attack the rim and it’s sort of working… if we can keep getting to the line like this we should eventually breakthru…

    Yes. And I’d even like to see Randle purposefully go hard and even make the offensive foul, if necessary. Just to get them on their heels a bit.

  58. All frustration aside the Knicks are just missing shots and seem to be rushing everything on offense. They need to settle down and make their 3pters, sounds too simple but that’s really it.

    I don’t agree. We seem competely flummoxed by the way they’re being defended. It’s as if Atlanta invented something new that has been played before.

    My question wasn’t a dig, btw. It was an honest question. I haven’t noticed any adjustments but i’m also on edge, so…

  59. They are hiding Trae by having him use his quickness to stay in his man’s shooting smace and having Capela lurking behind him, forcing a tough pass to the weak side.

  60. If Randle is going to keep playing like this, he shouldn’t be on the court. Obi was running and moving around, playing well, and as soon as Randle comes back it goes to shit again.

    I get that at this point we have to ride and die with the guy who brought us here, but this is just sad to watch.

  61. Hubert: I don’t agree. We seem competely flummoxed by the way they’re being defended. It’s as if Atlanta invented something new that has been played before.

    My question wasn’t a dig, btw. It was an honest question. I haven’t noticed any adjustments but i’m also on edge, so…

    Burks is missing all his shots, does that count?

  62. the ugliness is the constant dribbling and looking and getting into the corners…. this is a very incoherent offense that’s been elevated with rose getting to the rim on no pass possessions…. i have no idea what noel was trying to do….

    atl isn’t a great defensive team…. they just need to get to the rim and get to the line…. and they’re doing it with the ugliness offense out there… so once they stop being bitches they’ll get back in it….

  63. There is no way Gallinari should be able to stop Randle on that last drive. I mean WTF?

  64. The most alarming thing is Randle’s shots aren’t even close. It’s like he forgot how to play basketball.

  65. Is playing in front of a full crowd throwing off Julius and RJ after playing so well in empty arenas? This doesn’t make sense

  66. if payton starts the 2nd half, part of me hopes the garden just boos him off the court and we never have to deal with this again.

  67. Hubert: I don’t agree. We seem competely flummoxed by the way they’re being defended. It’s as if Atlanta invented something new that has been played before.

    My question wasn’t a dig, btw. It was an honest question. I haven’t noticed any adjustments but i’m also on edge, so…

    I agree with you. Thibs hasn’t been creative enough to adjust. Hell, at this point try going small and putting more shooters on the floor.

  68. ATL is reminding a lot of Miami last year, laying low until the playoffs…

    We are being exposed.

  69. Willing to buy one (1) Rose pnr for a functioning offense

  70. I’d love to say that “we re just missing our open shots” but the truth is that I don’t see many open or easy ones
    Atlanta plays pretty good D gentlemen
    It’s time for Thibs magic or we re screwed…

  71. The other adjustment I haven’t seen: they haven’t even tried to attack Young on offense. Burks at some
    Point was basically flummoxed when he had Young defending him maybe 8 feet away from the rim. The other time he hit a tough fadeaway.

  72. The problem with coming back from 13 down is we have no answers for Trae. Our only decent sequence was when he was sitting.

  73. Embarrassing, depressing half.
    ATL was in the penalty after 4 minutes in the second quarter and we were unable to take advantage.

    Randle with another dinosaur’s egg of game and Barrett was just a little bit better.

  74. Thibs hasn’t been creative enough to adjust.

    i’m not trying to make it a thibs thing, it’s a team thing. I’m incredibly surprised that with two days off we seem to have come up with nothing more than a “just execute better” plan.

  75. their defense is not that great…we are not patient and on many possessions we are rushing shots or taking bad shots…you would hope our fg% will go up some but if we don’t settle down…then it will be more of the same…

  76. I’m at the game in pretty good seats— we aren’t getting easy and open shots at all. ATL structured their D to stop Julius and there’s been no adjustment or answer of any kind. Randle averaged 37 ppg against this team and he’s been completely negated, and much of that is tactics or to use another term … coaching.

  77. It’s like everyone except Rose, Gibson, and Toppin (!) had an adrenaline dump 2 minutes into the 1st quarter.

  78. the whole capela double thing is actually just a magic trick. i mean we watched randle all year creating almost all his offense with improbably efficient 17 footers and jab step 3s, while most of his playmaking came from perimeter kickouts when the double came hard to him, not him diving to the rim. capela is mostly just lurking. the usual shots are mostly still there for randle. he’s just not feeling them.

  79. Trying to think of a time when a team’s star player has been as effectively shut down in consecutive playoff games

  80. I don’t know what to say at this point. The 1st quarter offensive execution was there but hitting open shots wasn’t.
    Then you see midway/late in the 2nd that they started pressing and came unglued offensively.

    The Hawks have better shooters from a talent standpoint. Thibs has to figure a way to loosen up the court on offense.

  81. I don’t think their defense has to be great to beat a team like us, it just has to be good. Which it is. Our offense is mediocre at best, always has been. Our defense is excellent, but it isn’t good enough to stop an excellent offensive team like theirs to teh extent that they can stop our offense. Trae Young has 20 points and isn’t even working up a sweat, and our vaunted defense can do nothing to stop him, while they stopped Julius in his tracks.

  82. I believe that Randall will improve the most in the second half.

  83. E, all merc’d out: Randle averaged 37 ppg against this team and he’s been completely negated, and much of that is tactics or to use another term … coaching.

    Exactly. And (I never thought I’d say this) I think Julius is passing out of the double team too early sometimes b/c it’s not even a real double yet but more like a shadow that leaves none of our shooters fully open. He has to bull to the hoop a couple times looking to draw the foul and risking the offensive foul himself. Otherwise, he’s never gonna make them REALLY come with the double, so he can pass out of it.

    The only players switched on are IQ, Obi, Taj, DRose, Burks, and maybe RJ.

  84. well it’s not quite midnight yet.. cinderella still has some time to twerk her ass off….

    we’ve been through worse halfs in the reg season… maybe not that much worse… but the best part of this season was how often we fought our way back from deficits…

    so hopefully we do that…

  85. Look, we all know that this is a PG’s league and that’s our biggest weakness. Playing Randle at point forward will only take us so far. He’s not LeBron or Luca or Jokic. He’s more Sabonis, or at best a healthy Blake.

  86. Oh come on. Breen and Clyde complaining about the crowd chanting against Trae is silly.

  87. Was it a flagrant foul? No, the player immediately wanted to get up in his face.

  88. I missed something… what ‘vulgar chants’ is Breen talking about? I haven’t heard anything other than “Trae Young SUCKS”

  89. What a soft flagrant what’s happened to the league lol

  90. That’s a pretty ridiculous call. That’s a pretty normal foul even if it was a little more aggressive.

  91. This is gonna have to be the IQ and Obi miracle game with help from Burks.

    No chance DRose is gonna have the gas to do this all the way.

  92. Come on guys…

    He went straight for the body, never looked at the ball, this is not hockey and the rules are clear…
    There are smarter ways to leave a message…

  93. Randle needs to come out of the game. He’s totally messed in the head.

  94. Z-man:
    I’m going to try to be more positive…LET’S GO!!!

    Good point. Moving to a new chair and changing caps.

  95. BTW: The chant is “Fuck Trae Young”

    It is both vulgar and unimaginative.

    How ‘bout “Trae Young flops”? “Flop-per”?

  96. I can’t believe we’re only down 12, it feels like we’re being dominated…

  97. I’m trying to think of another example of a player having such a great regular season and completely losing it in the playoffs.

    Even playoff P had some good games to go with the bad ones.

  98. Z-man:
    I don’t think their defense has to be great to beat a team like us, it just has to be good. Which it is. Our offense is mediocre at best, always has been. Our defense is excellent, but it isn’t good enough to stop an excellent offensive team like theirs to teh extent that they can stop our offense. Trae Young has 20 points and isn’t even working up a sweat, and our vaunted defense can do nothing to stop him, while they stopped Julius in his tracks.

    I didn’t want to admit it, but yeah you’re right: with the Hawks’ offensive talent, their improved D is exposing the limits of our offensive capabilities. This is a game you need to hit your shots and take advantage of when the Hawks go cold. We haven’t been able to do that.

  99. The team has been so Randle dominant throughout the year that I think the rest of the team doesn’t know what to do when he is like that.

  100. weird things is hawks have changed their offense a lot. so many of the multi screener actions for trae that worked so well have been mia. collins and capela had 275 dunks this year and are scoreless.

  101. Where did the MSG hate for Trae Young come from? I didn’t know we were supposed to hate the guy this much

  102. Ewing and Melo lost their fair share of playoff games but they never looked like Randle has this series.

  103. In Game 1 Randle was aggressive and terrible. Tonight he is tentative and terrible.

  104. I mean’, you need for your great players to play great to win in the playoffs. Hopefull Randle picks it up.

  105. They’re actually doing a bit better on Trae right now. Good D by Julius.

  106. Has Julius faced this kind of defensive gameplan during the season?

  107. djphan:
    the trae hate mainly came from hyped/drunk fans letting loose….

    That makes more sense. It really seemed disproportionate, out of left field

  108. Another thing: Knicks only have 8 assists on 21 made baskets so far.

  109. shading with your center against elbow isolations is not a new invention… randle usually responded by shooting stepback fade midrange jumpers or just resetting….

  110. Gallinari might be our most important player. He’s killing ATL out there.

  111. Just like Game 1, Knicks take the lead in 2nd half and the parade to the FT line for the Hawks begins.

  112. Looks like the Hawks aren’t so good when the shots aren’t falling, just like the Knicks on the 1st half

  113. At work again so can’t watch live. Have we finally woken up? Has Randle arrived at MSG?

  114. Lou schooled Quick on that lil move going baseline. C’mon rook – stay in front of your guy!

  115. Yeah, I don’t get the sub for Reggie, either.

    Give the guys O2 on the bench.

    Let’s win this!!

  116. marechal:
    They can’t possibly play Rose nonstop, can they?

    They’re gonna have to go with Quick and Burks in the backcourt to spell him.

  117. This series is shaping up to be a classic no matter the result eh

  118. djphan:
    man burks… cannot be passing up open 3s like that…

    It was inexplicable and it cost us a possession.

  119. our best quarter when we finally put elf down…

    man where could we be if we went there earlier….

  120. The Infamous Cdiggy: They’re gonna have to go with Quick and Burks in the backcourt to spell him.

    We need at least one of them to hit some shots. It may have to be Quick b/c I don’t think Atlanta will let Burks roast them again.

  121. IQ just killed the e momentum by missing that wide ass open fucking 3pter.

  122. Damn Quick hits that shot and we’re up 9. Instead Gallo finally hits one and it’s 3.

    Almost exactly like game 1 where RJ missed a 3 at the end of the 3rd quarter that would have put us up 10

  123. Obi stepped out of bounds there but that was more on Quick bricking that wiiiiide open 3.

  124. I think we should regift the MIP to Obi

  125. BigBlueAL:
    IQ just killed the e momentum by missing that wide ass open fucking 3pter.

    Yeah, sometimes it feels like “let’s all get in on this” instead of “feed the hot hand.” I wish it was more of the latter.

    We need to put some space between us, b/c Trae is due back in.

  126. Holy molley! The sleeping monster has awoken!

  127. I can’t believe I doubted this team earlier tonight man, I should’ve known better.

  128. This has been a wonderful ten minute run. Now, they have to hold up when Trae Young re-enters the game.

  129. KJG:
    Love seeing an aggressive OBI

    Absolutely. Obi just flies at the rim and often looks (to me) like the fastest player on the entire floor. Plus great job staying on his feet on that last D sequence.

    Let’s finish this!!

  130. So I guess Obi was pulling a rope-a-dope during the regular season. The playoff version has been pretty nice.

  131. KB Apprentice: Yeah, sometimes it feels like “let’s all get in on this” instead of “feed the hot hand.” I wish it was more of the latter.

    We need to put some space between us, b/c Trae is due back in.

    In fairness he was wide open off a good pass beating the zone so no problem at all with the shot selection.

  132. They’re playing a bit quicker on offense too! Not allowing the Hawks D to get set. The mobility/quickness of the bench guys are tilting the D ever so slightly.

    LET’S FUCKING GOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

  133. Bullock drew the foul there but I don’t mind that aggressiveness on Trae

  134. We seemed to have figured out a way to at least slow down Trae.

    Time to put this mother away!

  135. Bullock is getting all the open looks that Burks got at the end of Game 1. But he’s only hitting half of them.

  136. Please tell me the Garden is going nuts after the Taj and Randle buckets to seal it.

  137. Some ugly possessions down the stretch but back to back huge plays by Randle.

  138. Z-man:
    I am so proud to root for this team!!!

    AMEN!!!!!

    Also, I think some bball karma is affecting the Hawks’ outside shooting right now. Maybe they used up their mojo Sunday with the Bog 3 late.

  139. May 26, 2021 at 9:17 pm
    Z-man:
    I’m going to try to be more positive…LET’S GO!!!

    KB Apprentice
    Good point. Moving to a new chair and changing caps.

    The rest is history.

  140. LET’S FUCKING GOOOOO

    let’s hope this gets Randle out of his funk, the series is still open. As soon as he starts making passes again we’re such a better team.

  141. I was distraught after that 1ST half. Hell of a turnaround.

    We win this series even if Randle plays decently

  142. I can’t believe McMillan saw their lead turn into a 10 pt deficit and kept his bench unit on the floor throughout.

  143. Great defensive adjustment by Thibs in the second half. Take the ball out of Trae’s hands make the other guys beat you.

  144. Early Bird:
    I was distraught after that 1ST half. Hell of a turnaround.

    We win this series even if Randle plays decently

    I turned off the TV, I was so absurdly upset. Came back midway through the 3rd and I’m happy I did.

  145. BigBlueAL:
    I say we delete all posts on this thread prior to the 2nd half lol.

    No way, remembering the bad times makes the good times all the sweeter!

  146. Another miracle in a season full of them and this game can change the whole serie.

    They never give up even in the most embarrassing of times.

    Rose was big,
    Taj did a million of important things, Obi showed he’s a player,
    Randle made some big plays after a shitty game,
    RJ, Burks, Nerlens and even IQ did something useful.
    Special thanks to Gallo: once a Knick…

    Plus, maybe we have seen the last minute of The Plague in a Knicks uniform.

  147. Those shots of Obi’s mom weeping in the stands as the Garden crowd chants her son’s name. This game.

  148. The shot of Obi’s mom wiping away tears as the Garden chanted her son’s name… beautiful.

  149. “ Easy to convince Thibs to change tactics when the new tactic involves playing Rose and Gibson nonstop lol”

  150. BigBlueAL: I say we delete all posts on this thread prior to the 2nd half lol.

    LOL! Well, at least we can warn the guys that are going to watch the game later… don’t watch the first half, it isn’t worth it!

  151. I predicted 35 minutes for Rose in the playoffs. He was on the floor for 39.

  152. KB Apprentice: KB Apprentice
    May 26, 2021 at 10:13 pm
    May 26, 2021 at 9:17 pm
    Z-man:
    I’m going to try to be more positive…LET’S GO!!!

    KB Apprentice
    Good point. Moving to a new chair and changing caps.

    The rest is history.

    Well, I did post this in the first Q…

    Z-man:
    I think that no matter what, this game is going down to the wire.

  153. cybersoze: LOL! Well, at least we can warn the guys that are going to watch the game later… don’t watch the first half, it isn’t worth it!

    Fast forward to about 6 minutes left in the 3rd.

  154. Z-man: Well, I did post this in the first Q…

    I was saying you — Z man — were the difference by goin’ positive. I just followed your lead; the team did the same ;-)

  155. Z-man: Well Thibs finally took the L on starting Payton…

    About time. It was either that or the Knicks taking the L on the series. :P

  156. Has any player reinvented himself as much as Rose and been great in both versions?

  157. Won’t lie
    That first half fuked me good psychologically
    Felt that we’re done for this season…
    Thoughts that passed through mind:
    Julius better take the extension
    Ok it was good while it lasted
    Atlanta is far better
    Trae is toying with us
    Wake Up Julius!!!
    Put in Frank!!!

  158. Still wouldn’t bet money that we’re beating the hawks 3 more times but at least i feel much more confident about it after that 2nd half.

  159. That footage of Obi’s mum tearing up when the Garden was chanting his name hits like a tonne of bricks. Must be a hell of a feeling having your kid play for the team your family supports and knowing the significance of getting that kind of reception from the Garden crowd.

  160. The thing is, if our good players simply play to the level they did to finish the regular season, we win both games in NY, Julius passing the ball early on double teams, Bullock hitting 3s. The Hawks aren’t doing anything out of their ordinary outside of the Randle doubles and the Capela move shading towards the corner on defense.

    McMillan is also a mediocre coach who really can’t figure out rotations in the playoffs, he was shit at it with the Pacers and today again keeping Young out for ages while the Knicks came back.

  161. Those Trae Logo 3s were hybris to the bball gods
    You don’t disrespect the defender in the playoffs boy..

  162. I’m a little worried about Randle, but he may play better in Atlanta with a little less pressure than playing in front of the NY crowd. In any event, we are seeing why you want to get in the playoffs with a young team ASAP if you can. The more experience you get under this kind of pressure the easier it gets to play and execute. I wasn’t worried about Rose or Taj handling this, but I expected at least a couple of guys that have never been through this to get tight in some spots. Starting Rose AND TAJ in the second half was a great move not only because Elf has been so bad, but because those guys are warriors. All of this is going to carry forward to next year and make them tougher.

  163. McMillan is not a mediocre coach, he’s a very decent coach He has a career .535 record in 1200+ games. Thibs is clearly better.

  164. I was reviewing the play by play log – we were down 12 with 6 minutes left in the 3rd quarter, and finished it up 1. That’s just ridiculous, it helped that they were missing shots but what a freaking turnaround.

  165. We now live in a world in which Obi Toppin has had a major impact on a Knickerbocker playoff win.

  166. Of all the uber-pleasant surprises of this season, who the hell would’ve seen Obi giving critical minutes in a playoff game way back at the start of the season??!?!?!? And to help the team come from behind too? Hats off to him tonight!

  167. d-mar:
    I was reviewing the play by play log – we were down 12 with 6 minutes left in the 3rd quarter, and finished it up 1. That’s just ridiculous, it helped that they were missing shots but what a freaking turnaround.

    How much of that was with Trae on the bench? I’m guessing that might be McMillan’s big regret for this game. Sitting him too long.

  168. Playoff Obi has been a Bad Motherfucker
    Very Glad for him!

    McMillan played it cool on the second while Thibs was playing desperately for keeping his season alive

  169. Everything got scrambled with Covid and season tickets not really being a thing and the uncertainty as to when and how many playoff tickets would be available and so now the crowd skews a bit younger, a bit more male, and a bit more dedicated fan and it’s turned a really loud building into an insane asylum.

  170. McMillan getting drilled pretty hard in his post-game press conference about the lack of minutes for his best players. He was talking about his starters playing 35 and 36 mins which is alot for them and they seemed tired at the end of the game. Seriously? Kevin McHale on the NBATV post-game show wasn’t buying it at all.

  171. if you would have told most of us at the beginning of the season…we would be in the playoffs in a jam packed garden and our game winning closing unit was Burks, Bullock, Rose, Gibson and Randle…nobody would’ve believed that ….we would have called that the Merc Special Unit…

  172. Atlanta fans also think their rotations were bad and wanted Trae back in the game earlier. Their coach was asked about it. He said something about this being their normal rotation and being worried about the starters getting tired.

    Edit: i see BigBlueAl also posted this, but before me

  173. BigBlueAL:
    McMillan getting drilled pretty hard in his post-game press conference about the lack of minutes for his best players.He was talking about his starters playing 35 and 36 mins which is alot for them and they seemed tired at the end of the game.Seriously?Kevin McHale on the NBATV post-game show wasn’t buying it at all.

    Yeah, 22 year old Trae Young playing fewer minutes than 32 year old Derrick Rose in a loss is probably not a good look for McMillan

  174. I was wrong about Derrick Rose being bad at basketball

    The number of times Jowles has admitted he was wrong about something this season is nearly as astonishing as the Knicks being a 4 seed.

    Obi was playing so damn well in the second half that I was thinking maybe Thibs should just leave Randle on the bench for longer to get his head right. Fortunately, he looked a lot more like 2021 Randle when Obi sat than like the bumbling, stumbling, fumbling Randle of last season. But the fact that we can not only survive when our best player sits, but sometimes play even better, is so huge right now. Obi is rising to the occasion, literally and metaphorically.

  175. guys I had the weirdest night. at halftime I decided I needed to switch bars. On the way to 2nd bar, I got crashed into by a kid on a motor bike driving the wrong direction on a one way street. Was knocked out for a bit. Woke up, got taken to hospital bc I was concussed, and in the hospital I saw on a tv that the knicks were up 100-91! I missed the whole 2nd half.

    Based on everything we know about concussions, it would seem unwise for me to make this my new good luck routine. But if we get to game 7 of the finals I will take one for the team.

  176. Alan: Obi was playing so damn well in the second half that I was thinking maybe Thibs should just leave Randle on the bench for longer to get his head right.

    Agree. And it was Obi’s attitude, too, not only his play. He was deliriously happy to be out there and was running like we were up ten. Changed the whole mood of the team. Or at least my whole mood.

    EDIT: TAKE CARE, HUBERT. We need you healthy on Friday.

  177. Jesus, Hubert. Glad you’re okay. And no, we are not going to ask you to keep doing this for superstition’s sake.

    Well, I’m not. I can’t speak for all of the ruthless mugs in here…

  178. guys I had the weirdest night. at halftime I decided I needed to switch bars. On the way to 2nd bar, I got crashed into by a kid on a motor bike driving the wrong direction on a one way street. Was knocked out for a bit. Woke up, got taken to hospital bc I was concussed, and in the hospital I saw on a tv that the knicks were up 100-91! I missed the whole 2nd half.

    wait, this really happened? i was 99pct sure this was fan fiction for frank’s player tribune game memoir. jesus hubert.

  179. Agree. And it was Obi’s attitude, too, not only his play. He was deliriously happy to be out there and was running like we were up ten. Changed the whole mood of the team. Or at least my whole mood.

    Yeah, I think he’s always going to look somewhat stiff and deliberate at times on the court, just because of the way he’s built and the hip issue. But his overall confidence and joy are so palpable now when he’s on the court, and such a contrast to when he looked so lost at mid-season and we were all crying as we watched Hali highlights. We may have found a player, after all, even if he happens to play the exact same position as our best player.

  180. Glad you are well, Hubert. We can get you a helmet for game 7 of the finals.

    For those of us complaining about the lack of adjustments by Thibs: Bullock on Trae in the second half really disrupted him.

  181. Hubert:
    guys I had the weirdest night. at halftime I decided I needed to switch bars. On the way to 2nd bar, I got crashed into by a kid on a motor bike driving the wrong direction on a one way street. Was knocked out for a bit. Woke up, got taken to hospital bc I was concussed, and in the hospital I saw on a tv that the knicks were up 100-91! I missed the whole 2nd half.

    Based on everything we know about concussions, it would seem unwise for me to make this my new good luck routine. But if we get to game 7 of the finals I will take one for the team.

    Shit, Hubert, that was you?

    (jk hope you are okay and glad you have lots of great knicks postgame to convalesce with…)

  182. If this is the sense of urgency Nate McMillan coaches in the playoffs with in terms of his rotations I can see why he has one of the worst playoff records of all-time.

  183. Looks like I’m wrong about us coming back in the third b/c Trae was sitting.

    We start down 13 and we’re already tied when Trae subs out at 2:21, so …

  184. Bullock was totally the difference-maker on both ends tonight. If only he had a freaking pulse in game 1

  185. Well, I’m not. I can’t speak for all of the ruthless mugs in here…

    haha. If we’re down 15 at halftime in game 3, I can imagine a scene like the one in the movie Airplane, where everyone is lined up to knock me out like the passenger having a panic attack!!!

  186. From the Hawks perspective it’s mission accomplished- get a split in NY.

    But it sure seemed like a lot of things changed in that 2nd half, especially re: Trae “Fuck Trae Young” Young.

  187. KB Apprentice:
    I was saying you — Z man — were the difference by goin’ positive. I just followed your lead; the team did the same ;-)

    lol I just meant that it was stupid for me to get so negative in the first place when I sort of knew that the game would eventually come down to the wire. Thibs + Knicks is pretty evenly matched with Nate + Hawks, so it is destined to be a long series with all crazy competitive games. I’d be shocked if I see a blowout for either team.

  188. wait, this really happened? i was 99pct sure this was fan fiction for frank’s player tribune game memoir. jesus hubert.

    for real. I was out for a few minutes. I’m chilling in NYU Langone under observation til tomorrow morning. If anyone knows how I can watch 2nd half on my phone, I’ll be obliged. MSG Go doesn’t seem to have rewind.

  189. I also think that getting your first playoff win is an obstacle. Now that we have that behind us, hopefully we will play more freely. But ATL isn’t going to have too many 5-25 3-pt nights from Bogs, Gallo and Ginger, so I’m not going to get all that confident just yet.

  190. Hubert: for real. I was out for a few minutes. I’m chilling in NYU Langone under observation til tomorrow morning. If anyone knows how I can watch 2nd half on my phone, I’ll be obliged. MSG Go doesn’t seem to have rewind.

    I’d start with Knicks Film School postgame podcast, Macri is a nice listen.

  191. Z-man:
    Bullock was totally the difference-maker on both ends tonight. If only he had a freaking pulse in game 1

    Loved Reggie’s 2nd half D. And I loved Clyde shouting, “See, they’re forcing Young to his left, now!” as if to say, “Finally, they’re doing what I told them to do!” Hahaha.

    Great win. See y’all Friday!

  192. In general the defense tonight on Young especially on the PnR was much more aggressive than in Game 1. It did lead to more open 3pters which we were fortunate Hawks missed a majority of them but it was still much better than seeing Young waltz into the paint hitting easy floaters all night like he did in Game 1.

  193. Taj was all over the place tonight. Another game by him where the box score doesn’t tell the story.

  194. MSG Go doesn’t seem to have rewind.

    man that sucks hubert. i’m not sure how you can get the game on your phone right now, but note that nba tv is replaying it tomorrow afternoon. if you’re feeling desperate you could go to the boxscore on nba.com and click through to video for all the field goal attempts. probably not an ideal method when concussed, i’d imagine…hope you’re not stuck there overnight

    edit: reread and see you are stuck overnight. feel better man. and start thinking about how far you’re willing to take this if we’re down again at the half in game 3.

  195. Taj was on THE STREET. Anyone could have signed him. Nobody did. And people made fun of us for bringing back Thibs’ security blanket. Where the hell would we be without that dude?

  196. d-mar:
    Taj was all over the place tonight. Another game by him where the box score doesn’t tell the story.

    Absolutely. I hope he’s already back in his hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

  197. for real. I was out for a few minutes. I’m chilling in NYU Langone under observation til tomorrow morning. If anyone knows how I can watch 2nd half on my phone, I’ll be obliged. MSG Go doesn’t seem to have rewind.

    I think it was on TNT also so maybe you can go to their website and stream it if you have them as part of your cable package.

  198. I always liked Taj, and kind of feared him when he was with the Bulls. Smart, tough, talented…played bigger than his size. As Macri said, he’s one of those guys you hope stays with the organization forever.

    Taj from Fort Greene.

  199. Z-man:
    McMillan is not a mediocre coach, he’s a very decent coach He has a career .535 record in 1200+ games. Thibs is clearly better.

    Those are regular season games, but he’s notorious for not performing well in the playoffs, just ask Blazers or Pacers fans. The last time he reached the second round was with Seattle in 2005. Ignoring the Blazers time, because they really were outmatched every year, and the first loss to the Cavs, they lost a winnable 7 game series against the Cavs and got swept back to back against Boston and Miami in a pretty embarrassing fashion.

    My point is that we’re going against a team that is good, probably more talented overall than the Knicks, but that isn’t really doing anything special. They have the absolute killer Trae / Capela pick and roll, Bogdanovic is really good and they have a decent defense, that’s pretty much it. It’s not a team the Knicks should be afraid of.

  200. And I was also absolutely wrong in Rose and Gibson, but specially on Rose, as I really thought we were getting past Knicks Rose and that would be pointless. Really glad to be wrong on both counts.

  201. Got called into a meeting and had to watch the game on DVR, can’t wait to read through the emotional swings on this thread!

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