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'Pissed off' Knicks react to latest frustrating loss

WFAN Sports Radio
WFAN Sports Radio
 2022-01-21

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After Thursday night’s flop against the Pelicans, the scuffling Knicks are now one loss against the Clippers away from finishing a crucial homestand with an 0-4 record.

Thursday was supposed to be the easy one of the four, taking on a 17-28 New Orleans team without Zion Williamson, but instead, New York was thoroughly embarrassed in a putrid third quarter that the bench unit was unable to overcome.

New York shot just 26.3 percent from the field in the decisive third quarter, while hitting on just one of its 11 3-point attempts.

“We can’t allow our offense to dictate our defense,” Tom Thibodeau said. “I thought we played hard, but we didn’t play with the toughness we needed to to fight through things…hustle can get you back in a game, and often times, that changes things…we gotta get back to that.”

Julius Randle was benched for good in the third quarter after shooting just 1-for-9 on the night, not hiding his frustration as he snapped at teammate Evan Fournier, who was trying to calm Randle down after he was whistled for a technical foul.

Randle is far from the only Knick angered at the team’s current play, which has led to a three-game losing streak capped off by an ugly loss that precedes a much tougher four-game stretch.

“The main thing is I’m happy that I see guys pissed off about it rather than just laughing about it and joking about it,” Taj Gibson said. “We’ve got some serious guys in the locker room that really want to do well, and nights like this hurt.

“You can point fingers and you can be pissed, but the next day you just gotta get up, get back ready and try to shore up the mistakes you made last game and come back even harder the next game.”

There have been multiple frustrating losses for the Knicks this season, ones that required such a rebound and resilience, but the team hasn’t shown any consistent resilience so far this season. They actually aren’t far off from their mark at this time last season, as New York rode a hot streak down the stretch to the fourth seed in the East, but this current version of the Knicks has struggled at home, with their leader in Randle looking like a shell of last year’s self. That all added up to another deflating defeat, one that the team has no choice but to try and bounce back from to avoid a further slide.

“No one likes to lose, but at the same time what can you do?” RJ Barrett said. “It happened. It already happened. We can't dwell on it. Just gotta watch the film and go and just fix it and not let it continue.”

Follow Ryan Chichester on Twitter: @ryanchichester1

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