Keys to the Game: Knicks 109, Celtics 94

Keys to the Game: Knicks 109, Celtics 94

Updated: 1 month, 2 days, 15 hours, 51 minutes, 27 seconds ago

Key Moment

Boston made push after push to try to get back into its game Monday night against the Knicks. The problem was that New York had an answer each and every time.

The most important answer arrived late in the second quarter.

Boston trailed by 18 but sliced 10 points off that deficit in a matter of only two minutes and five seconds of playing time. The C’s were back within eight at the 3:05 mark of the quarter, and it certainly felt as if they were going to head into halftime with a wave of momentum behind them.

New York quickly responded, however, and that response was the most important stretch of the game.

The Knicks answered with eight straight points to bump their lead back up to 16 with 1:50 remaining in the half. That run erased every bit of momentum the C’s had briefly built up.

RJ Barrett scored or assisted on all eight of those points for New York. He first assisted on an alley-oop dunk to Mitchell Robinson, then scored two consecutive three-point plays. The first arrived via the 3-point line, and the second was via a turnaround, and-one jumper at the basket, after which he converted the free throw.

Boston kept the pressure on for the remainder of the contest but could never break through to make it a close game. The Knicks responded each and every time to secure their sixth straight win.

Key Player

Malcolm Brogdon is putting together one of the hottest stretches by a Celtics reserve in a long, long time.

He scored another 22 points Monday night against New York to mark the fourth time he’s reached that number in his last five games. He has averaged 20.4 points per game over that stretch.

Brogdon was far and away Boston’s top offensive weapon during this game. Not only was he the only member of the team to break the 20-point mark, but he also led the team in field goals made (10), while leading all non-bigs on the team in field goal percentage (62.5 percent).

The versatile guard rounded out his box score line with two rebounds, two assists, one steal and one blocked shot during 27-plus minutes of action.

Box Score NuggetsNeither team dished out more than 21 assists

.Malcolm Brogdon accounted for 22 of Boston's 29 bench points

.Jayson Tatum led the game in assists with nine

.Julius Randle and Immanuel Quickley tied for the game high in scoring with 23 points apiece

.Boston shot just 9-for-42 (21.4 percent) from long distance

.Mitchell Robinson led the game in rebounds with 13

.Both teams totaled 11 turnovers

.New York made nine more free throws (23) than Boston attempted (14)

.Two Knicks reserves, Quickley and Josh Hart, finished with plus/minus ratings of plus-15

.Jalen Brunson (17 points, four rebounds, three assists) led the game in plus/minus at plus-21.

Quote of the Night

"If you can't make open shots, you constantly have to guard paint threat, paint threat, paint threat, and they put a lot of pressure on our defense. But I just didn't think it was our night."

- Joe Mazzulla on Boston's poor shooting performance