New York Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek critical of team after loss to Chicago Bulls
From NBA media reports
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Jeff Hornacek is done with moral victories for his young New York Knicks. He’s had enough of late rallies and great effort without the right kind of (winning) results. Hornacek didn’t hold back after his team dropped a game at Madison Square Garden to the lowly Chicago Bulls, who were playing on the second night of a back-to-back set and playing after travel issues prevented them from arriving from Charlotte until Saturday afternoon.
Kristaps Porzingis, who missed a buzzer beater that would have changed the narrative with the Atlanta Hawks visiting MSG tonight, took ownership as well. But it’s Hornacek’s reaction that has caused a stir in the city, per Marc Berman of the New York Post:
The Knicks fell behind by 13 points in the first quarter — and that’s all Hornacek cared about.
“First of all, that’s worthless,” Hornacek said of the late rally. “The game was lost way in the beginning. That team had travel issues. We come out at the start not ready to play and let them get out to a big lead. There’s no excuse for that. We talked about that — to hit them hard at the beginning of the game. Instead, we were floating out there.”
The Bulls, after winning a back-to-back set, still have the NBA’s worst record at 5-20, but the Knicks own the worst road record at 1-8.
Porzingis had tied the game with a mid-range jumper with 7 seconds left, but he was hardly dominant enough to make up for Tim Hardaway Jr. sitting for a fourth straight contest. The 7-foot-3 Latvian was sloppy down the stretch. He failed to win his duel outright with European rookie forward Lauri Markkanen, who finished with 15 points on 7-of-13 shooting. Markkanen reportedly was slated as Porzingis’ replacement had the Latvian been dealt on draft night.
Porzingis wound up with 23 points but was 10-of-25 from the field and took the blame afterward.
“I feel like I let my teammates down and I’m not talking about the final shot — in general,’’ Porzingis said. “We and I can’t start the game like that and I take full responsibility for this loss.’’
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