Jannah Theme License is not validated, Go to the theme options page to validate the license, You need a single license for each domain name.
USA

OG Anunoby’s return not enough as Knicks fall to Bulls

CHICAGO — OG Anunoby’s record with the Knicks took a hit after a controversial ejection and a disappointing Knicks performance in Chi-Town.

The defensive Swiss Army knife returned to the starting lineup but couldn’t stop the Bulls, who led big from the start and won wire-to-wire, 108-100.

A day after Julius Randle was ruled out for the season, Jalen Brunson once again received little help on offense as Josh Hart was quickly made unavailable by referee Scott Foster.

Hart was tossed for a Flagrant 2 foul with 34.1 seconds left in the first quarter.

Josh Hart was ejected during the Knicks’ loss to the Bulls on Friday. P.A.

The forward was stripped naked during training and, mid-air, Hart’s flailing leg kicked Javonte Green in the side of the head.

Foster, no stranger to controversy and quick triggers, first gave Hart a technical explanation.

He upgraded it to Flagrant 2 and auto-eject after the exam.

Hart protested to a calmly shocked Foster before retreating to the locker room after his shortest appearance (11 minutes) since being sent off in the first quarter against the Clippers on December 16.

Replays did not give a clear indication that Hart’s kick was intentional.

Rather, it appears that Hart was trying to maintain his balance and the boot was inadvertent.

It was close judgment at best and it hurt the Knicks.

Jalen Brunson scored 35 points for the Knicks in their loss on Friday. P.A.

McBride, the backup to start the second half, played well, but the Knicks ran out of steam after cutting their 18-point second-half deficit to four.

Chicago’s Nikola Vucevic hit the biggest shot of the night, a 3-pointer with about 90 seconds left that gave the Bulls an eight-point lead. Brunson’s 35-point, 11-assist night in 41 minutes was wasted.

The Knicks were overwhelmed, 57-38.

They were playing the second night of a back-to-back and the energy matched the occasion.

This is the fourth defeat in five games for the Knicks (45-32), who remain fifth in the East but only 1 and a half games ahead of the No. 6 Pacers (who beat the Thunder on Friday) .

The No. 4 Magic, who hold the tiebreaker against the Knicks, lost to the Hornets on Friday in a shocker.

It’s truly a cluster and the Knicks aren’t breaking up.

They fell to 15-3 in games with Anunoby, who played well and had 12 points in 29 minutes on 5-of-8 shooting.

“Usually when you get to the last 10 games of the season, everyone is playing for something,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “There’s an increased intensity.”

Green, who fell to the court after Hart’s kick, was fine and scored 25 points off the bench.

He even had a double-pump reverse dunk in the second quarter as the Bulls pulled away in the first half.

Javonte Green scored 25 points in 33 minutes off the bench Friday as the Bulls beat the Knicks. USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

Anunoby, making his first appearance after a nine-game absence due to a “flare” in his surgically repaired elbow, started at forward alongside Hart, pushing McBride out of the starting lineup.

It wasn’t an easy start.

The Knicks trailed by 12 after eight minutes and never fully recovered.

Friday was the first of three games against the Bulls over the final 10 days of the season.

It’s not hyperbole to say that the Knicks’ playoff seeding will be determined by their performance against Chicago.

New York Knicks’ OG Anunoby (8) shoots from the outside against P.A.

Their next game is Tuesday at the United Center, which follows a short day trip to Milwaukee for Sunday’s game.

In other words, the Knicks are sleeping five nights in Chicago – a rare extended stay in the NBA schedule.

“I think the one thing for both teams will probably be the question of familiarity,” Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. “You come back and play against each other again, there’s at least from a preparation standpoint, there’s familiarity, which I think is helpful for both teams to prepare to play.”

New York Post

Back to top button