The New York Knicks played an extremely important game when they took the court to face the Milwaukee Bucks at the BMO Harris Bradley Center on Friday, February 2. The Bucks are holding on to one of the final playoff spots in the Eastern Conference that the Knicks are hoping to grab before the regular season ends. Every road game is huge for New York, but they are even more important when playing a potential playoff team. Unfortunately, the Knicks fell to the Bucks 92-90 despite playing on of their best road games of season.
The sold-out crowd in Milwaukee was riled up at the beginning of the game because they finally got to see star forward Jabari Parker in action for the first time in more than a year. New York did a great job to overcome the loud crowd, and they even had a one-point lead after the end of the first quarter. The Knicks used hot shooting to grab the lead, and they continued to execute well on offense throughout the second quarter. After another even quarter, both teams entered the locker room with the game tied 55-55 at halftime.
After 110 points were scored in the first half, the game shockingly turned into a defensive battle in the second half. Neither team managed to get many shots to fall in the third quarter, which kept the game tied entering the final 12 minutes. The game remained close until the final seconds. After carrying the Milwaukee Bucks on his back the entire second half, Giannis Antetokounmpo hit a layup with 1.9 seconds left on the clock to give Milwaukee a 92-90 lead. Tim Hardaway Jr. heaved up a long three-pointer for the Knicks as time expired, but it never had a chance of going in the basket.
The Knicks have to be happy with their effort in Milwaukee, but the odds of making the playoffs get worse after every close loss. The starting lineup played well the entire game, but the team was let down by a subpar performance from the bench. The Milwaukee bench completely dominated the game when the starters were off the court, and that turned out to be the difference in the game. The New York Knicks will look to end their short two-game losing streak when they play the Atlanta Hawks at Madison Square Garden on Sunday, February 4.