Photo Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
Someone may need to give up their roster spot on the New York Knicks if Allonzo Trier continues to make defenders look silly on the floor.
Following a 13-point performance in the Knicks’ scintillating 124-121 preseason victory over the Washington Wizards, Trier came to party tonight against the rival Brooklyn Nets. His contribution in the 2nd quarter went a long way in sealing a 107-102 victory for the Knicks.
Early in the 2nd, the Knicks were fading away and soon found themselves down by 15, but Trier stayed true to his nickname “Iso-Zo” and scored 17 points in the quarter to help lift the Knicks back into the game. At the half, the Knicks led 50-46.
Trier led all Knicks scorers with 25 points.
Since David Fizdale became coach of Knicks, one of the main issues he wanted to eliminate is the sluggish start to third quarters. Against the Wizards, the Knicks went on a 14-0 run to open up the third. Tonight was more of the same as the Knicks outscored the Nets 22-11 to take a 72-60 lead to open up the second half.
The Nets showed some fight to get back into the game in the 4th, but three big buckets late by Damyean Dotson helped propel the Knicks to victory.
Again, the Knicks showed great defensive intensity throughout the game. Fizdale has made it clear that he’s trying to embed the “Knicks DNA” into his players, and he has called on Knicks legends such as Walt “Clyde” Frazier and Patrick Ewing to inspire the players. Whatever secret sauce the legends have been feeding the players seem to be working because the Knicks haven’t played defense like this since the Jeff Van Gundy days.
The Knicks held the Nets to under 40% shooting from the field (37-95) and under 20% shooting from 3-point range (8-41).
In addition to the Knicks great play on the defense, Enes Kanter was an absolute beast around the basket. It didn’t matter who the Nets had guarding him, Kanter was too strong and used bully-ball tactics to dominate the boards and score easy points.
Kanter finished the game with 22 points and 20 rebounds. Both Trier and Kanter combined to score 47 of the Knicks 107 points.
If the Knicks keep this play up, it’ll be hard for the Garden faithful to hold in their excitement for the upcoming season.