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Undermanned Knicks blown out by Raptors, fall season-worst 10 games under .500

Their first game without the injured Kristaps Porzingis is their fifth straight defeat.

Knicks' Michael Beasley, who scored a game-high

Knicks' Michael Beasley, who scored a game-high 21 points, looks for a shot against Toronto Raptors' Jonas Valanciunas during the second half Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, in Toronto. Photo Credit: AP / Chris Young

TORONTO — There could be many nights like Thursday for the Knicks now that Kristaps Porzingis is out for the season.

They were blown out of Air Canada Centre by the Raptors, 113-88, after trailing by 32 points. The Knicks (23-33) have lost five straight games for the first time this season and are a season-worst 10 games under .500.

The Raptors (38-16) outscored the Knicks 42-19 in a 12-minute stretch spanning the third and fourth quarters to open a 102-73 lead. “It seemed like they never missed,” Jeff Hornacek said.

It was the Knicks’ first game since losing Porzingis for the season with a torn left ACL. It hasn’t been determined when he will undergo surgery. General manager Scott Perry said Porzingis is getting a second opinion, and the swelling has to go down before he can have surgery.

The Knicks also were without Enes Kanter (oral surgery). In the afternoon, Doug McDermott was traded in a three-team deal that brought back point guard Emmanuel Mudiay.

The Knicks couldn’t get anything going offensively, and on the defensive end, they were slow all night. The Raptors connected on 16 three-pointers and got 61 points from their bench.

Michael Beasley led the Knicks with 21 points. In his NBA debut, 7-1 Luke Kornet had 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Tim Hardaway Jr.’s struggles continued as he shot 4-for-14 and scored nine points. In his last five games, he is 13-for-60 overall, including 2-for-26 from three-point range.

“I know it’s a struggle right now,” Hardaway said. “But I’m not going to continue to harp on it. I just got to continue to shoot myself out of it.”

Seven Raptors scored in double figures, led by Jonas Valanciunas’ 18 points.

It would have been an uphill climb for the Knicks to make the playoffs even if Porzingis were healthy. With him out, they have been counted out. But Hardaway doesn’t want to hear any talk about tanking for a better draft pick.

“I’m just not built that way,” he said before the game. “Tank is not in my vocabulary. If anybody feels like we should be tanking, they’re rooting for the wrong team. Sorry to say that. We’re not built to just lose.

“Take pride in this game. We got here for a reason. We’re going to keep battling, we’re going to keep fighting, we’re going to keep pushing. Anything can happen.”

New York Sports