The New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets are having very similar seasons, despite vastly different preseason expectations. The Knicks currently sit at 5-7, with a -4.9 point differential. Brooklyn is 4-7, with a -4.5 point differential. It’s amazing how perspective can skew nearly identical squads into huge disappointments (Knicks) and impressive surprises (Nets).
New York Basketball Weekly Recap
New York Knicks
On Thursday night, the Knicks had a chance to extend their season-high winning streak to (snicker) three games. Instead, they caught the Washington Wizards on a rare good night. John Wall was engaged and played 31 minutes. Otto Porter shot the ball well. Bradley Beal was healthy again. All the pieces came together, to the detriment of New York.
Derrick Rose scored a season-high 27 points and shot 8-for-8 from the foul line, but it wasn’t enough. However, if Rose can keep a similar level of production going forward, he forms a powerful trio alongside Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis. After his career-high 35 points against the Pistons, Porzingis showed why he is considered the leader of this new generation of European players in the league.
The Nets have yet to put together a winning streak of any kind this season, but their schedule hasn’t exactly done them any favors. Neither has the hamstring injury that continues to keep Jeremy Lin sidelined. They just finished up a four-game road trip in which they lost three of four, one of those losses coming against the Knicks.
The lone win came against a weak Phoenix Suns squad, but it showed us something from Rondae Hollis-Jefferson that we haven’t seen before. He had a game-high 20 points and 13 rebounds. It was his third career double-double and first ever 20-point game. Hollis-Jefferson was previously so bad offensively that it is probably too early to say that he’s found a new game, but his development is encouraging regardless.
The tough schedule continues for the Nets this next week, even as they return home. Games against Oklahoma City, Portland, Boston, Indiana, and the Los Angeles Clippers are pending. It is hard to predict when Brooklyn may finally win two games in a row (if it does indeed happen this season), but it probably won’t be before the end of November.
The Knicks have an interesting schedule coming up, one that could allow them to make some progress up the Eastern Conference standings. They play the Atlanta Hawks next. After hosting Portland, they play back-to-back games against the Charlotte Hornets on consecutive nights. The Hawks and Hornets are currently two of the three best teams in the conference, in terms of record. They need to see more consistency out of the veterans, but a strong performance in that set of games would set up the Knicks nicely heading into the month of December.