Derrick Rose New York Knicks
Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Knicks overcame a rough start to pull off a big comeback win against the Milwaukee Bucks.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Home of beers, brats, and the defending NBA Champion Milwaukee Bucks. The New York Knicks paid a visit to this fair city on Friday night for a game with these same Bucks and didn’t just win 113-98.

Rather, the Knicks overcame a 21-point deficit and saw their bench score 45 points. In the last three quarters, they outscored the Bucks 94-60. Julius Randle looked like Julius Randle again, and RJ Barrett had his fifth-consecutive 20-point game.

It was a great win, but how did the New York Knicks get there?


An early Bucks stampede

After the first quarter, the Knicks looked cooked. Shots weren’t falling and everyone looked clueless on defense. The defending champs led 38-19 and New York simply had no answer. Even Grayson Allen torched the Knicks for five early threes.

It was a brutal reminder that despite the end result, these Milwaukee Bucks were still a good, good team.




Derrick Rose was the difference

Once again, Tom Thibodeau went to a trusted hand instead of free agent signee and native New Yorker Kemba Walker. Derrick Rose paced the offense from the second quarter on and finished with 23 points and four assists to go with eight rebounds. Rose was active everywhere from three from the paint to the mid-range, and was a +31 compared to Walker’s -10.

Randle Rebirth

After seeing his production tail off in the Knicks’ last few games, Julius Randle remembered what this season was about. He was way more aggressive with the ball this time around, scoring 32 points with 12 rebounds. It wasn’t the prettiest showing, but Randle was in pure MVP form. The New York Knicks need that from him all season.



Giannis gonna Giannis

The lone bright spot for the Milwaukee Bucks tonight was two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. He did all he could to keep his team in the game and finished with 25 points and seven rebounds. Unfortunately, he was 7 of 17 from the field and -5 for the game. No one stepped up enough in Middleton’s absence, leaving Antetokounmpo a captain without a crew.



Player of the Game: Derrick Rose

Kemba Walker may be New York’s favorite son, but make no mistake. The New York Knicks are Derrick Rose’s team.



Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.