Knicks takeaways from Wednesday's 112-103 Game 5 win over Heat, including Jalen Brunson's near triple-double
The Knicks staved off elimination with a 112-103 win in Game 5 against the Heat on Wednesday night.
The Knicks went with the same starting five for Game 5, with Josh Hart starting on the bench for the second straight game. Jalen Brunson, Julius Randle, RJ Barrett, Mitchell Robinson and Quentin Grimes were in the starting five.
Here are the takeaways….
- The Heat got off to a fast start with a Kevin Love layup before Randle hit a step back three. Max Strus hit a floater that got the friendly bounce to put the Heat back up by one early, but Tom Thibodeau had to call timeout as Randle was hunched over in the backcourt. He took a shot to the face by Bam Adebayo while both were going up for a rebound and stood in the game.
The Knicks’ energy was much and it showed on both ends of the floor. Both teams shot poorly with Miami giving New York the three, but they rarely knocked them down. The Knicks seemed hesitant to shoot, especially the three. A stretch of three offensive fouls in a row for the Knicks led to an 8-0 Heat run and a Thibs timeout with 4:29 left and a 16-10 Miami lead.
In the final minute of the first quarter, Josh Hart was called for a foul -- his third -- on Jimmy Butler as he was shooting a three. The officials reviewed it and while it looked like Butler may have kicked out to draw the foul, the call stood and was upgraded to a flagrant one. Miami closed the quarter on a 16-4 run and with a 24-14 lead.
The Knicks shot 30 percent while Miami shot just 36 percent in the first frame. However, the story was the second-chance points, which Miami dominated 13-0. They also outrebounded New York, 9-7 and on the offensive glass (6-4). Barrett had two fouls early and didn’t factor much into the quarter, while Brunson had four points while constantly double teamed. Grimes led the team with five points while Randle had three points on 1-for-7 shooting. Both teams shot 2-for-9 from three.
-The Knicks began the second with Grimes, Obi Toppin, Brunson, Isaiah Hartenstein and Barrett. Grimes hit a corner three and after a Miami miss, a Toppin alley-oop from Brunson. This unit would secure rebounds and push the ball to go out to a 10-2 run and cut the deficit to 26-24. This forced a Miami timeout at 10:11. The Knicks extended their run to take a six-point lead, accentuated by a Brunson and-one.
The Knicks made their first seven shots of the quarter, but the Heat defense would clamp down on defense, which resulted in easy transition buckets. They went on a 7-0 run to retake the lead, 33-32 and force a Thibodeau timeout. Before the commercial, you could see Brunson fuming at the referees after he thought he was fouled on their last possession. Randle, who was on the bench, had to hold him back. Out of the timeout, both teams would trade buckets in different ways. Miami continued to get inside while New York started to hit threes and get stops. Robinson made his presence felt, getting rebounds and tipping loose balls to teammates. The game would stay close and the score was tied before Randle hit a step-back three with less than a second left in the half to put the Knicks up 50-47.
The Knicks shot 11-for-22 (50%) while the Heat struggled to make shots, going 9-for-25 (36%) including 1-for-10 from three. Brunson took over, going into halftime with 18 points, five assists and four rebounds. He played 24 minutes as well.
New York made a point to get to the free-throw line, going 9-for-12 from the strike while Miami was 4-for-4 in the quarter. Miami continued to lead in second-chance points (17 to 3) and offensive rebounds (8 to 6) at the half.
-The Knicks began the second half with their starting five and the effort continued from the second quarter. They went out to an 8-0 run thanks to threes from Barrett and Brunson. The Knicks would open their biggest lead of the game (13) at 7:37 of the third thanks to defense and driving to the basket for high-percentage shots. That lead would balloon to 19 a minute later, forcing another Heat timeout. A 5-0 run by Miami, caused by Knicks turnovers and missed free throws, helped the Heat cut the lead to 14 but Thibodeau called a timeout after Robinson came up hobbled. The Knicks punched back to keep their double-digit lead, but turnovers, more missed free throws and timely Miami threes brought the Knicks lead down to 13. Caleb Martin hit a three in the winding seconds to cut the deficit to 84-74 after three.
Despite shooting 11-for-16 (69%) in the quarter, the Knicks could not hold on to their dominant lead because of those turnovers. Miami shot better from three (5-for-11) while the Knicks shot 5-for-8 from downtown in that quarter. Grimes and Brunson have played every minute of the game so far. Randle (22), Barrett (22) and Brunson (28) led all scorers after three.
-Hart, who didn't play the entire third quarter, started the fourth and quickly picked up his fourth foul. The Knicks would find some rhythm offensively with the second unit, helped by transition offense, but the Heat kept responding with threes to cut the Knicks lead to 92-85 with 8:30 to go. A Kyle Lowry three cut the Knicks lead to four, but Brunson answered with a three of his own.
The Heat began coming down with offensive rebounds and 50-50 balls. With 5:17 left, Miami started to foul Robinson away from the ball to put him on the line. On two trips, Robinson was 3-for-4 before he was replaced by Hartenstein. Miami cut the lead to two as New York had trouble finding and knocking down shots. The tides turned when Hartenstein put back a Barrett miss, which was followed by two Barrett free throws to put the Knicks up six. Grimes would seemingly twist his knee on the ensuing Heat possession, but stuck with it and stole the ball from Butler to give the Knicks back the ball.
After a few possessions where the Heat would get the offensive rebound, Robinson knocked down a free throw, and when he missed the second Randle stole the ball from Miami and hit a layup to put the game away. The Knicks won 112-103.
- Grimes and Brunson played all 48 minutes. The last time two players played the entire 48 minutes in a playoff game was in 1972, Walt Frazier and Jerry Lucas. Brunson had a near triple-double, posting 38 points, nine rebounds and seven assists. Barrett finished with 26 and Randle added 24 points. Robinson posted eight points and had 11 rebounds.
The Knicks head to Miami for Game 6 looking to stave off elimination again. Tip is set for Friday, May 12 at 7:30 p.m.