Knicks embarrass the title defending Nuggets with outstanding 122-84 win at Garden
In a resounding victory at Madison Square Garden, the New York Knicks destroyed the defending champions, Denver Nuggets, securing an point-blank 122-84 win.
OG Anunoby delivered a standout performance, scoring 26 points, his highest since joining the Knicks. The MSG crowd showered him with “OG” chants, acknowledging his impactful contribution. Anunoby’s remarkable stat line included 10-18 field goals, 6 steals, and an impressive +/- of +38.
“He played really well tonight. He was aggressive on both sides of the ball. That’s the OG we got, that’s the OG we saw playing against for a while.”
– Jalen Brunson
The Knicks showcased an exceptional defensive display, limiting the Nuggets to a season-low 84 points, tying with their previous effort against the Trail Blazers. Throughout the game, the Knicks notched up 12 steals and forced the Nuggets into committing 19 turnovers.
Precious Achiuwa‘s tenacious rebounding, including 6 offensive boards, contributed significantly to the Knicks’ second-chance points. Quentin Grimes led the second unit with 19 points off the bench, shooting 7-11 from the field, while Miles McBride‘s sharpshooting from beyond the arc added 13 points to the mix.
The Knicks set the tone early, taking an 18-7 lead that the Nuggets failed to diminish throughout the game. The team’s balanced scoring saw Julius Randle with 17 points and 8 assists, and Donte DiVincenzo chipping in with 16 points and 6 assists.
The lead continued to expand, reaching 62-41 at halftime after a decisive 10-2 run in the second quarter. The Knicks maintained control in the second half, extending their lead to 117-79 with 4:38 left, ultimately securing their most significant lead of the game.
The Knicks’ defensive prowess was further highlighted as they held the Nuggets to just 5-25 from the three-point line. With 12 steals and a season-low point allowance, the Knicks etched their name in the record books for January’s highest +/-, with Anunoby, Brunson, and Isaiah Hartenstein claiming the top three spots.
Despite Nikola Jokic’s impressive 31 points and 11 rebounds, the Nuggets found themselves overmatched. Aaron Gordon’s 12 points were the only other double-figure contribution, and the team’s struggles from beyond the arc further compounded their challenges.
“They were just more aggressive. One team basically on the floor today. We were not there today.”
– Nikola Jokic
While the Knicks celebrated their dominant win, there was a bittersweet moment as Jalen Brunson narrowly missed out on securing a starting spot in the All-Star Game, falling short in the fan vote.
The Knicks’ remarkable run since the Anunoby trade continued, with an 11-2 record. This surge propelled them to the 4th spot in the Eastern Conference, sitting 0.5 games ahead of the Cavaliers and closing in on the 76ers with just a 2-game deficit.
Up-next: The Knicks (28-17) are taking on the Miami Heat (24-21) on Saturday on an early game from 3:00 pm