NCAA Tournament, Knicks, Nets

Knicks Extend Win Streak To 5 In Overtime Against The Bulls

Coming off of four straight wins through shutdown defense, the Knicks offense found a way to keep the win streak alive against the Chicago Bulls winning 128-120 in overtime.

Julius Randle and Jalen Brunson led the way for the Knicks with a respective 31 and 30 points. Randle carried the load for the first three quarters with 27 of his 31 points coming by the conclusion of the 3rd. It was not the best shooting game for Randle as he was only 8-19 from the floor, however he was able to get to the free throw line 15 times and hit 12.

Jalen Brunson was questionable coming into the game due to a foot injury but that did not seem to slow him down at all. Brunson continued his impressive start to his Knicks career as he shot an efficient 11-21 from the floor, 3-6 from the three point line, and 5-5 from the free throw line to combine for his 30 points. His heroics would shine brightest once overtime started.

Winning Time

The Knicks held a lead for the majority of the game, but could not pull away in regulation. The Bulls dynamic duo of DeMar DeRozan and Zach Lavine kept it close by combining for 57 points. Similarly to Randle, DeRozan dominated the free throw line shooting a whopping 16-17.

New York had a chance to put the game away at the end of regulation being up 117-115 with the ball and 30 seconds left. A Brunson and Randle pick and roll gave Randle a favorable matchup on Alex Caruso, however he could not take advantage. Randle would be blocked on a layup attempt which would be taken coast to coast by DeRozan for a layup to tie the game at 117 with 24.7 seconds remaining.

Now tied, another opportunity presented itself for Randle to put the game away. However a questionable play call that led to Randle holding the ball for the first 19 seconds of the shot clock before taking a tough fadeaway on the baseline would not pan out. Randle would air ball the attempt giving the Bulls a chance with 0.7 seconds remaining, but they could not convert either so an extra period was in store.

Brunson And The Knicks Defense Finish The Job

A difficult ending to the regulation was quickly put to bed as the Knicks dominated the Bulls in the extra quarter. Brunson scored 7 of the Knicks 11 points in overtime while making a highlight reel play to put the dagger in the Bulls. Brunson put Chicago's best perimeter defender Alex Caruso on the floor with a quick crossover into a three pointer to build the lead to 9 with 30 seconds left.

Although Brunson carried the load on offense for the Knicks, the entire overtime lineup fought incredibly hard on the defensive end. Even with Immanuel Quickley coming in for the fouled out RJ Barrett, the Knicks only allowed one field goal and one free throw to be made in overtime. They held the Bulls to a mere 1-7 from the floor and 0-3 from the three point line.

After falling apart a bit at the end of regulation, the Knicks could have held their heads in overtime and gave this game away, but they did not allow that to happen. The Knicks struggled defensively most of the game, and especially in the second half. However, once overtime came the Knicks started to show again what has led them to their current win streak.

Playing elite defense every night is a near impossibility in the NBA. And although the Knicks have been playing an elite level of defense in the past four games, they were bound to struggle eventually. Winning teams can overcome this type of adversity, and the Knicks overcame that adversity against a tough Bulls team when it mattered the most.

The Knicks will get another look at the Bulls as they come back to New York Friday night to play each other again.