Panzura postgame wrap: Knicks 122, Pelicans 112 (OT)
A possession away from pulling off what would’ve been a valuable victory in pursuit of a play-in berth Sunday afternoon, New Orleans couldn’t close out the game at Madison Square Garden, eventually losing in overtime to an Eastern Conference host for a second straight time in gut-wrenching fashion. New York trailed by three points in the waning seconds of regulation, before Reggie Bullock sank a corner three-pointer that helped send the matchup to OT. In the extra period, New York held the upper hand for much of the first four-plus minutes, building a 10-point lead.
In a costly late-game sequence, despite Pelicans players receiving instructions in the timeout huddle to foul the Knicks before they could get off a tying three-point attempt, no foul was made on a driving Derrick Rose. Rose’s drive into the paint drew unnecessary help defense along the baseline from Lonzo Ball, a mistake that left excellent spot-up shooter Bullock open to fire.
“It wasn’t just him,” Stan Van Gundy said of Ball’s error by helping. “There were two mistakes on the play. (The players) know what they are. We deserved to lose. When you do that, you deserve to lose. It’s not like somebody threw in a tough (shot to tie it). We deserved to lose.”
New Orleans dropped to three games behind both ninth-place Golden State (28-29) and No. 10 San Antonio (27-28) in the West standings.
IT WAS OVER WHEN…
New York’s Julius Randle sank a three-pointer from the right wing, giving the Knicks an eight-point lead with 53 seconds remaining in OT. Randle’s timely trey beat the shot clock by less than a tenth of a second.
In regulation, New Orleans was in good position to win after Eric Bledsoe sank two free throws with seconds left to provide a three-point lead, but Bullock’s three forced a deadlock.
PELICANS PLAYER OF THE GAME
Bledsoe broke out of a rough individual stretch with a huge second half in the Big Apple, putting the Pelicans in position to split their road trip. After New Orleans was down 57-44 at halftime, Bledsoe’s 13-point third quarter lifted the visitors into a 79-all deadlock entering the fourth period. Bledsoe finished with 22 points. He made half of the team’s six three-pointers.
BY THE NUMBERS
6/27: Pelicans three-point shooting. New Orleans has not made more than seven three-pointers in any of its last seven games.
58-46: Pelicans advantage in points in the paint. They had to be effective there in order to generate offense, because jumpers were not falling.
REVISITING THREE KEYS TO VICTORY PRESENTED BY FANDUEL
The matchup between lefty power forwards favored New Orleans, because although Randle scored 33 points, he needed 28 shots to do so, finishing 11/28. Zion Williamson’s first NBA game at MSG featured him notching 34 points on 13/23 shooting, as well as 8/11 from the foul line.
New York's Alec Burks had a big game Wednesday in New Orleans, but didn’t play Sunday due to health and safety protocols. Derrick Rose more than picked up the slack though, by scoring 23 points off the bench, including making several big plays and shots in clutch time. New Orleans received some helpful contributions from Naji Marshall and Jaxson Hayes, but the reserves’ combined shooting from the field of 7/24 was damaging.
The Knicks were very low volume from deep for much of Sunday’s game, going a mere 6/17 through three quarters, which was good news for the Pelicans. But New York canned five treys in the fourth quarter and OT, many of them immense in the effort to rally and win. The Knicks finished 11/29 overall.