From Marc Berman:
Julius Randle got fined $15,000 by the NBA, then tried to score 15,000 points on the lowly Wizards.
Randle took out any lasting referee frustrations on Washington Tuesday at the Garden as he poured in 37 points, making 7 of 10 from 3-point range as the Knicks blew out the Wizards, 131-113. Randle’s seven 3s tied a career-high.
The All-Star power forward, who was punished for his inflammatory remarks about the refereeing in a loss to Philadelphia on Sunday, is the chief reason the Knicks are 22-22, already surpassing last season’s win total when they finished 21-45.
“The statement [he made] was the win was the most important thing,’’ Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He’s done that a number of times for us. To bounce back after a tough loss, and the way we lost the game, that’s what leaders do.’’
Randle, who hasn’t missed a game this season, shot 13 of 24 from the field as the Knicks won a wire-to-wire blowout, leading by as many as 31 points.
The Wizards aren’t good and they were terrible tonight (I thank my lucky stars every day that the Knicks were smart enough to not get saddled with Russell Westbrook’s decline years. Boy howdy), but they have played some good teams really hard recently, so don’t be mistaken, this was a great win.
Randle was dominant, RJ was awesome and Mitch was tremendous. Those were the three most important players on the team coming into the season and they were all great tonight. That’s dynamite.
Now, were there issues? Of course. The bench was mostly terrible outside of Burks, Quickley’s shot is falling apart and his scoring tendencies are making Derrick Rose look subtle (if he peaks at Lou Williams, though, that’s still tremendous value at the #25 pick) and Obi Toppin looks like he’s about to change his last name to DNP-CD and, of course, Thibs kept all the starters in in a blowout, but that’s not as important as the fact that the Knicks kicked the ass of a shitty team and Randle, Mitch and RJ all were great.
Very good win.