The Knicks looked sluggish in the garden on Wednesday evening for 47 minutes and were ready to admit a one-sided defeat of 127 to 106 to the glowing grizzlies. Then Jae Crowder, the striker from Memphis, pulled a move into the Bush League and the Knicks finally showed the fight you would have liked to see earlier.
So that we can understand each other. The Knicks should pay a fine and offer compensation for loss of income that security guard Elfrid Payton could receive for pushing crowder in the final seconds of the game on Wednesday night. He deserves retribution. It was the equivalent of trying to steal second place by eight runs to ninth place. It was unprofessional.
The grizzlies led by 18 points when Crowder stole an incoming pass and ran to the corner to try a 3-pointer … 48 seconds ahead. An angry Payton ran over and gave Crowder a hard push, sending him close to fans sitting on the sidelines. In no time, players and coaches pushed and pushed on the pitch. Crowder was thrown out of the Knicks along with Payton and Marcus Morris.
The reaction of the crowd was significant. Instead of cheering Payton or booing the opposition, the fans began to sing: “Sell the team! Sell the team! "
You cannot blame them. The last few seconds of excitement could not make up for the poor performance they had seen, especially in the second half, when the home team took the 68-54 lead.
Perhaps it was part of the disappointment of the fans that the Knicks have no young talent like Ja Morant, Memphis & # 39; Rookie Point Guard, who already deserves to be ranked second behind Zion Williamson in the 2019 draft.
Morant, 20, impressed on his debut in Garden with 18 points and 10 assists. It was a silky effort that flaunted his entire game. He was at the reception and at the side of several praise dunks and shot 7 out of 13 from the field. His influence on the game was evident from his Plus 42 statistics in 28 minutes.
Perhaps that was part of the Knicks' frustration at the upcoming brawl when they knew they had only one way out to get talent like Morant instead of RJ Barrett, the third overall selection. Morant entered the game with an average of 17.5 points per game and 7.1 assists for the season. He also asserted himself in the middle of the battle and defended his teammates.
"I felt we were only going to compete against each other," Morant said of the near-brawl. "It's over with. We got the win; move on to the next one."
It's easy to say that you've won 11 of your last 13 games, like the Grizzlies, which are now between 24 and 24 in season. Unlike the Knicks, Memphis is a young team that is on the rise with a player like Morant.
Like many other NBA players, Morant was shocked by the death of Kobe Bryant, but is inspired by his legacy and hopes to do similar things in his NBA career.
"I have his signed shirt," said Morant. "I'm pretty sure that every child had a moment when you throw something in a trash can and you shout:" Kobe! "I grew up with a lot of Kobe. I felt like he was invincible."
Morant played as if he were invincible against the Knicks, which scored 58-48 points in the livery and generated 16 sales.
"We had some shots that didn't fire, and you have to go through them and keep looking for ways to get stops," said Knick interim coach Mike Miller. "We didn't get enough stops."
The Knicks couldn't stop Morant, the engine of Memphis's crime. Ultimately, this frustrated the Knicks, which in turn frustrated their fans and offered their own solution: "Sell the team."
For more information on the Kobe Bryant tragedy, see the latest episode of the Big Apple Buckets podcast: