‘There’s no improvement’: Rockets crushed by Julius Randle, turnovers on New Year’s Eve

New York scored 37 points off 25 Houston turnovers in Saturday’s matchup, leading to a 108-88 victory (box score) for the visitors in Toyota Center’s annual New Year’s Eve matchup. The Knicks (19-18) snapped their five-game losing streak, while the Rockets (10-26) enter 2023 having lost eight of their most recent nine games.

“There’s no improvement,” veteran guard Eric Gordon said postgame from a frustrated home locker room. Gordon had 12 points and 3 assists in 27 minutes on 5-of-10 shooting and 2-of-4 on 3-pointers (50.0%), though he did turn the ball over four times.

“Same old thing all year,” Gordon elaborated. We have a small margin for error. … It’s a lot of things. It’s mindset. You got to play for one another. Do what’s right by your teammates. If you do that, it’d be more fun. You give yourself a better chance to win.”

Veteran forward Julius Randle led the Knicks, who turned the ball over only 10 times, with 35 points, 12 rebounds, and 6 assists on 9-of-20 shooting (45.0% FG) and 5-of-13 from 3-point range (38.5%). Third-year guard Immanuel Quickley added 27 points and 7 assists.

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Kevin Porter Jr. led the Rockets with 23 points, 10 rebounds, and 8 assists on 7-of-12 shooting (58.3%) and 4-of-8 on 3-pointers (50.0%). Backcourt mate Jalen Green added 16 points and 3 assists, though he shot just 4-of-12 from the field (33.3%) and 3-of-8 on 3-pointers (37.5%). Porter and Green had a game-high five turnovers apiece.

Rookie forward Tari Eason grabbed a career-high 13 rebounds in 24 minutes off the bench, and he also added three steals. However, Eason shot just 4-of-11 from the field (36.4%), mirroring a night when the Rockets shot just 37.7% collectively and 30.4% on 3-pointers. By percentage, it was Houston’s coldest night of the 2022-23 NBA season.

Alperen Sengun sat out for the Rockets with lower back pain, while Jalen Brunson was scratched for New York with right hip soreness.

Scroll on for highlights, analysis, and postgame interview reaction from Toyota Center. Houston returns to action in the same building on Monday night versus Dallas, with tipoff at 7:00 p.m. Central.

Highlights

Analysis and Interviews

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Story originally appeared on Rockets Wire