Knicks fall to Kings, lose Jalen Brunson to foot injury


Sacramento, Calif. – The opener of the Knicks’ four-game West Coast swing was turned into a nationally televised game featuring one of the NBA’s two most up-and-coming teams.

That TNT audience saw the Knicks lose their most important player again, and fall short of completing a remarkable comeback without Jalen Brunson against the league’s highest-scoring team, the dynamic Kings.

The Knicks erased a 21-point third-quarter deficit on Thursday night before suffering their second straight loss, 122-117, ending a nine-game winning streak at Golden 1 Center.

More important, however, was Brunson’s return to the lineup, which lasted only two quarters.

After missing two games with a sore left foot, the Knicks’ $104 million point guard is out for the second half with the same injury, the team announced.

Brunson had 19 points on 6-12 shooting 19 minutes before halftime.

Sixth man Emmanuel Quickley endured his second consecutive shooting spree after scoring 38 points in 55 minutes in Sunday’s double-overtime win in Boston.

He finished with three pointers on 1-11 from the floor, missing seven of eight from 3-point range.

Jaylen Brunson, who did not return after halftime after reinjuring his foot, lost the ball as he was swarmed by Kings defenders during the Knicks’ 122-117 loss.

RJ Barrett scored 25 points and Julius Randle had 23 for the Knicks, who fell to 39-29 before games against the Clippers and Lakers on back-to-back days beginning Saturday in Los Angeles.

Quentin Grimes scored 19 points and Josh Hart had another all-around strong game off the bench for the Knicks, filling the stat sheet with nine points, 15 rebounds (eight on the offensive glass), seven assists and three steals.

The Knicks cut a 21-point deficit late in the third quarter before scoring seven straight points early in the fourth — featuring dunks by Isaiah Hartenstein and Obi Toppin — to close within 92-91.

Domontas Sabonis, who led the Kings with 24 points, dunked at home during the Knicks' loss.
Domontas Sabonis, who led the Kings with 24 points, dunked at home during the Knicks’ loss.
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Barrett’s straight 3-pointer tied the score with 8:15 left, but All-Star point guard De’Aaron Fox answered with a trey and a driving dunk for a 103-96 lead.

Fox finished with 23 points and seven assists after missing Sacramento’s previous game with a hamstring injury.

Randle sank two consecutive buckets to close the gap to two with less than a minute to play, but Fox made a layup with 25.4 seconds left and Randle turned the ball in at the other end for a 117-113 game. given

Domantas Sabonis recorded a triple-double with 24 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists while Malik Monk added 19 points for the Kings, the No. 2 team in the Western Conference, 39-26.

Julius Randle finished with 23 points after struggling in the first half of the Knicks loss.
Julius Randle finished with 23 points after struggling in the first half of the Knicks loss.
NBAE via Getty Images

The Kings used their speed and got to the rim from the start, hitting 8 of their first 10 shots for an 18-9 lead midway through the first quarter.

On the other end, the Knicks missed nine of their first 11 attempts, including a 1-for-5 start by Randle, who scored just four points in the first 12 minutes.

Sabonis finished the opening period with 11 on 5-of-6 shooting with three assists, but Brunson made a couple of 3-pointers late and had 11 to keep the Knicks within 30-23 entering the second. took

Barrett also clanked his first four field-goal attempts, but he scored four straight points early in the second as the Knicks closed to within three.

Harrison Barnes capped a 10-1 Sacramento spurt with a reverse layup and a converted free throw to push the lead back to a dozen.

Kings star guard De'Aaron Fox scored 23 points in the Knicks' loss.
Kings star guard De’Aaron Fox scored 23 points in the Knicks’ loss.
NBAE via Getty Images

The Knicks couldn’t stop Monk in the first half. He sank four 3-pointers and scored 14 points in the second quarter, starting a 20-4 run that propelled the Kings to a 65-45 advantage with 1:49 left and a 19-point cushion at halftime. .

Randle, Barrett and Quickley went a combined 5-for-25 from the field the first two quarters, and the only Knicks were that close thanks to Brunson’s 19 points and seven points and eight boards (five offensive) by Hart.

Brunson didn’t return to start the third quarter, but the Knicks rallied without him — including two key 3-pointers by Grimes — and clawed their way back to within 91-84 entering the final period.

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