Julius Randle overshadows Nets player after another missed Knicks opportunity

Julius Randle scored another triple-double, but allowed a great 3 and missed a great 2.

In his first trip to the Barclays Center since his teammates had to avoid him facing referee Scott Foster after a controversial final on March 15, Randle had 19 points, 15 rebounds and 12 assists. But, just like last time, the Knicks lost to the underdog Nets even though their best player possessed the ball with a shot at a tie.

“I have great looks, something I practice every day,” Randle said after missing the final shot in a 114-112 loss. “I felt good getting out of my hands and I didn’t go in.”

Three weeks ago, the Nets were behind, 115-112, when Randle was called up to travel. Replays showed Kyrie Irving hitting the fumble when Randle rose to a 3. But Randle never lost possession of the ball and the umpires dismissed it as a trip when he returned with the ball. Two teammates prevented him from hunting Foster after the final buzzer, but did not tip over a chair on the way back to the locker room.

There was no whistle on Monday, and Randle said that sequence was not fresh on his mind. Just a horn that sounded as his 18-foot jump shot over Jeff Green echoed off the back hoop.

Tom Thibodeau and Julius Randle during the Knicks-Nets game on Monday.
Tom Thibodeau and Julius Randle during the Knicks-Nets game on Monday.
Corey sipkin

Outside of a timeout, the Knicks had Randle fake a screen and curl free out of the arc for Alec Burks’ inning pass.

“The last play has three different options and obviously he’s the focal point,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “You have two other readings you can go to. I thought I had a good look at it. “

The Knicks blew a 13-point lead in the third quarter when Irving scored 40 to lead the comeback. One of Irving’s biggest baskets, to open up a 100-94 lead, was a 3 step back from a behind-the-back dribble that knocked Randle out of position on a defensive switch.

Three minutes later, Randle and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarroot were charged for double technical fouls after receiving a physical.

“I really don’t know what his problem was,” Randle said. “He’s not a guy on the court that I worry a lot about when I play. He tried to give me a little forearm or whatever, so I took his arm off “

Four of Randle’s 10 triple-doubles are in a Knicks uniform, including three in the last 12 games. Only five players, all point guards, have more in franchise history. That statistic and nearby losses don’t matter much.

“It doesn’t do anything for me,” Randle said. “It is either a victory or a defeat. There really are no moral victories. “

Randle, who has been toying with a sore thigh, winced in pain for the past two minutes. He was holding his right knee after grabbing a defensive rebound, but that didn’t stop him from dribbling through his legs in isolation and shooting from midrange on the next few possessions. His two free throws cut the Knicks’ deficit to 112-109.

“I’m fine,” Randle said. “Without worries.”


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