Good Afternoon
Good Afternoon

Without Kristaps Porzingis, Knicks overpowered by Warriors

Kevin Durant of the Warriors reacts after making

Kevin Durant of the Warriors reacts after making a basket over Courtney Lee of the Knicks at ORACLE Arena on Jan. 23, 2018, in Oakland, Calif. Credit: Getty Images / Ezra Shaw

OAKLAND, Calif. — The Warriors had their four All-Stars on the floor Tuesday night. The Knicks had their lone All-Star on the bench in a suit.

With Kristaps Porzingis sidelined with a sore ankle, the Knicks were able to stay with the defending NBA champions for three quarters in a game effort at Oracle Arena. But there was too much Stephen Curry (32 points) as the Warriors beat the Knicks, 123-112.

The Knicks (21-27) fell to 2-3 on their seven-game road trip.

Michael Beasley scored 21 points in place of Porzingis, who learned before the game that he was named an All-Star reserve. Porzingis injured his ankle in practice Monday and is day to day. Courtney Lee added 20 for the Knicks as all five starters scored in double figures.

Curry shot 9-for-19 (8-for-15 on three-pointers). Kevin Durant had 14 points and 14 assists but was ejected with 2:50 left for his second technical foul for arguing with officials.

Klay Thompson and Draymond Green were named West reserves to join All-Star starters Curry and Durant.

The Warriors (38-10) were coming off a loss to Houston, but they hardly played with any urgency until the third quarter.

The Knicks led by 10 at the end of the first quarter (31-21). They led by as many as 10 in the second quarter, but Golden State went into halftime trailing only 60-58.

“We didn’t close out that second quarter the right way,” Lee said. “The first 18 minutes, I felt we played good basketball. It’s tough, man, when they get it going. We got lucky a little bit in the first half. They were missing open shots. Then in the second half, those shots they were missing went down.”

The Warriors didn’t take their first lead until the 10:27 mark of the third quarter. Five minutes later, Golden State was up by 10 and then 14 shortly thereafter.

Still, the Knicks fought, and trailed 95-86 entering the fourth. Then the Warriors decided to pull away — leading by as many as 18 — and the Knicks were powerless to stop them.

“At the beginning of the game, we did a good job of controlling the pace,” Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said. “You don’t want to play their type of game and try to go up and down in the running game. I thought we did a good job in the early part of the game. Then Curry got hot in the second half making threes. The guys played hard. They’re just a tough team.”

The Knicks gave up 127 points to the Lakers in their previous game. But they clamped down on the Warriors and still had a chance with the game tied at 69 midway through the third quarter. That would be the final tie of the night.

Curry hit a three-pointer and the Warriors went on a 9-0 run to take the lead for good.

It was a frustrating night for Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek. Lee fired an errant cross-court pass in the first quarter that went right to Hornacek, who without missing a beat (or taking a dribble) shot the ball at the Knicks basket. Air ball.

As the Warriors were expanding their lead in the third, Hornacek exploded and was called for a technical foul after a non-call on what he thought was a goaltending by Durant.

New York Sports