Alec Burks‘ 18 in the fourth wasn’t enough, as Trae Young‘s floater with 0.9 to play sinks Knicks, 107-105, in Game 1.
Here’s a few takeaways from the game:
1. The Knicks came out of the locker room ice cold from the field, starting the game 2-of-14. The stalling by the Knicks’ offense helped the Hawks open up as large as an 11-point lead in the first.
The Hawks took a 24-16 lead into the second after the Knicks shot 26.9 percent from the field and 12.5 percent from three in the quarter.
2. Alec Burks and Derrick Rose came off the bench to rejuvenate the team, combining for Rose-to-Burks assist and three in the corner, a Burks assist on a Taj Gibson dunk, and a vintage Rose over-and-under layup to bring the Knicks back within five.
Later in the quarter, Burks set up Obi Toppin for a dunk to wake up the Knicks crowd and bring them to their feet as the Hawks took a timeout with the lead cut down to 36-32. The Knicks then cut the lead to 45-44 after a 12-4 run that had MSG rocking.
By the halftime horn, the Knicks were down 52-50.
3. The Knicks took their first lead since early in the first just under the nine minute mark in the third on a Reggie Bullock jumper. The Hawks took back the lead and held it a bit there after, but the Knicks wouldn’t stay away, with RJ Barrett putting Bogdan Bogdanovic on a poster to blow the roof off the Garden.
The Knicks went on a 10-0 run over a late two minute stretch, capped off by a Gibson And-1, to take a seven-point lead. With one quarter to play, the Knicks held a two-point lead.
Barrett — who is the youngest Knick to ever play in the playoffs — and Julius Randle each had a double-double by the end of the quarter, despite neither shooting it well from the field.
4. From then on, the Knicks and Hawks battled. The Knicks held onto the lead until around the 3:30 mark when Bogdanovic and De’Andre Hunter hit back-to-back threes to take a 97-93 lead.
Two huge threes from Randle and Burks, and another Burks mid range jumper gave the Knicks back a 103-100 lead with 1:11 to play. Bogdanovic hit another three to tie the game, before Trae Young hit two free throws after being fouled by Barrett with 28.6 to play.
Rose hit a clutch floater in the lane with 10.2 to play to tie the game at 105, but Young responded with a floater of his own with 0.9 seconds left.
Randle got the inbounds pass and tried to take a turnaround jumper for the tie, but he was short and shot it after the buzzer to hand the Hawks the Game 1 victory.
5. Randle finished with 15 points on 6-of-24 shooting, 12 rebounds and four assists, while Barrett chipped in another 14 points on 6-of-15 shooting and 11 rebounds.
With the two stars having an off night from the field, Burks dropped 27 points (including a staggering 18 in the fourth) and Rose had 17 points, both off the bench. Immanuel Quickley, who hit a couple of big threes that helped the Knicks build some momentum in key moments, had 10 points in his playoff debut.
Someone to watch as the series move on is Nerlens Noel, who exited the game with an ankle injury. Noel had a solid defensive game, blocking two shots and stealing the ball once.
6. Young led the charge for Atlanta with 32 points, 10 assists and seven boards, while Bogdanovic dropped 18 points and had two steals.
The Knicks and Hawks run it back at the Garden on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.