The Brooklyn Nets weather Julius Randle’s big night to overcome the New York Knicks in this virtual Battle for NYC.
The New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets may reside in the same city, but the opening game of the NBA 2K20 Simulation Showcase proved to be a clash of playing styles. Ultimately, it was the Nets’ pace-and-space offense that beat out the Knick’s bruising inside game 112-104 at Barclays Center.
The big story of the night was the Knicks’ Julius Randle. New York’s sixth year power forward out of Kentucky went off for 41 points, 13 rebounds, two assists, and one steal in the loss.
Randle’s 10-point first quarter turned out to be a sign of things to come. In fact, he and starting point guard Elfrid Payton were responsible for 16 of the Knick’s 20 points in the opening frame.
After a six-point second quarter, Randle really got things going in the third, dropping 18 points in the period. He would come away with seven more points in the final frame for his total. He led his team in scoring in every quarter except the second, where he tied with guard Frank Ntilikina.
38 of Randle’s 41 were scored in the paint. His lone points beyond the key were via a corner 3-pointer with 28.2 seconds left in the game to make it 110-104, Brooklyn. His dominance inside was precisely how the Knicks managed to outscore the Nets in the paint, 68-46.
Unfortunately for the Knicks, Randle’s output wasn’t enough for the victory. Despite winning the paint battle, the bench battle (42-33), and the turnover battle (7-11), the Nets used their firepower from beyond the arc to keep their opponent at arm’s length for much of the game.
Brooklyn went 16-of-41 from 3-point range while the Knicks went 9-of-24. Kyrie Irving cashed in five 3-pointers, Spencer Dinwiddie and Caris LeVert came away with four each, Joe Harris knocked down two treys, and Garrett Temple chipped in one more.
In the end, Irving led his team with 25 points, five rebounds, six assists, and one steal. Dinwiddie (four rebounds, six assists) and LeVert (two rebounds, five assists, one steal) followed up with 18 points each. Meanwhile, Harris (one rebound, three assists), Taurean Prince (nine rebounds, four assists), and Jarrett Allen (12 rebounds, two assists, one steal, two blocks) each added 12 points to the winning cause.
For New York, Randle was aided by Ntilikina’s 13 points and three assists from off the bench. Payton, despite his big first quarter, ended the evening with 12 points, three rebounds, and seven assists.