Knicks 76ers Game 2

Knicks Win By Committee in Games 1 and 2

It was an epic evening at the world’s most famous arena. Our beloved New York Knicks have scarpped their way to a 2-0 series lead against the Philadelphia 76ers. They showcased a dynamic “win by committee” approach; the Knicks’ roster depth came to the forefront when Jalen Brunson was struggling. In the moments where we could have seen the Knicks crumble, Deuce McBride, Josh Hart, Donte DiVincenzo and everyone else have rose above and delivered through two games. The Knicks lit up MSG and now it’s time to steal one on the road. 

Game One Committee

In Game One, the story was Jalen Brunson’s shooting woes, where he managed 22 points on an 8-for-26 night. Despite that, the Knicks’ collective rose to the challenge. Deuce McBride added an impressive 21 points off the bench and hitting five 3-pointers. Josh Hart’s provided the late-game heroics, including an epic double-clutch three.

On the defensive end, Mitchell Robinson impacted the game way more than what the 12 rebounds and four blocks on the stat sheet say. He was the only big who could match Embiid’s physicality in Game One. Bojan Bogdanovic’s 13 points all came at critical points in the game when the team needed scoring. The Knicks’ bench outscored the 76ers’ 42-7. That, alongside key offensive rebounds, were the two catalysts in the win.

Game Two Heroes

Brunson’s shooting woes continued in Game Two, but the “Stay Ready” culture of the Knicks paid dividends. Donte DiVincenzo left MSG the hero for the Knicks, sinking the game-winning 3-pointer with just 13.1 seconds left on the clock; inciting a famous double “Bang!” from Mike Breen, beating the Sixers again by the skin of their ass.

DiVincenzo’s overall performance was stellar after struggling in Game One. His shooting was efficient, hitting 50% of his shots from the field, and his overall intensity on both sides of the floor elevated the Knicks tremendously. 

Defensive Highlights and Team Effort

Isaiah Hartenstein’s overall performance left him the unsung hero. He did not shy away from Embiid, and also made a few clutch floaters. The compound effect of his minutes as the starter throughout the season prepped him for this moment. He showed just how important he was to this team and how valuable he is to the front office. You can name all the winning plays he made just in the final minutes of the game. With his crucial block on Tyrese Maxey’s drive in the dying seconds of the game, or the last offensive rebound and pass to OG, who turned it loose to Donte for the game winner. The importance of Isaiah Hartenstein to this team is more than monetary. 

Embiid & Maxey

Despite a monumental effort from Joel Embiid, who has scored 63 points over 76 minutes this series, the 76ers fell short and are frustrated. It’s obvious Embiid’s knee is still banged up, but even so, Tyrese Maxey has been the best player in the series.

Maxey was tormenting New Yorkers at MSG again with 35 points and 7 assists. He didn’t look very sick, despite being listed as questionable before the game. The 76ers’ bench couldn’t contribute to scoring once again. Only 17 points over two games, the other players on this roster have been a non factor.

Brunson Shooting Struggles

Credit to the Sixers defense for how they have handled Brunson, but I’m not sure how many more games the Knicks can win if he continues to shoot like this.

76ers Head Coach Nick Nurse has done a really good job putting long, athletic wingers on Brunson, specifically Kelly Oubre Jr. Brunson is getting contested on every shot attempt. He’s getting denied the ball, and he’s being pestered constantly. He’s due for a big game, and if it comes on the road in Philly, the Knicks have a great shot of advancing.

Onto Philadelphia For Game 3

Tom Thibodeau has two days to make adjustments. Shifting to the road, slowing down Embiid and Maxey are on top of the board. I want to see OG Anunoby on Maxey right from the tip-off. This is why they traded for him. His ability to guard 1-4 and be smart enough to double Embiid is what makes him special. If OG can settle down Maxey while Brunson picks up his scoring, they can serve themselves. As for Embiid, you have to make him move and jump as much as possible. On defense, make him dribble and get on the fast break and attack the basket. That will free up the shooters as everyone crashes the basket. Sprinkle in that elite offensive rebounding and the Knicks could break the Sixers spirit in Philly, if it isn’t broken already.


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