Barrett and Quickley celebrated as formers in New York: but the Knicks always win

New York-Toronto wasn’t a game like any other – and it couldn’t have been. The exchange at the end of December that brought OG Anunoby to the Big Apple in exchange for RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley changed the destinies and career trajectories of three players, who for the first time overnight found themselves faced with “reversed” jerseys “. If New York seems to be flying since the arrival of Anunoby (9-2 record after the victory against the Raptors that night), for Quickley and Barrett the first challenge as exes was also the first return to Madison Square Garden, as opponents. Both were greeted with a loud standing ovation at their presentation on the pitch – both in the quintet. “A strange match, right from the start. I couldn’t get used to it: I picked up the scouting report and it said ‘Knicks’. I said to myself: but really??”, the words of Quickley, protagonist of a game with 12 points and 11 assists in a starting role that he couldn’t have in New York – closed by Brunson. Then, at the first useful time-out, the tribute video for the ex-couple also arrived on the Garden’s jumbotron: “Extraordinary that they did it”, commented Barrett. “I didn’t expect it, but it was really nice. I can’t help but thank everyone for the years spent here: returning to New York was really exciting,” said the Canadian, who scored 20 points and 8 rebounds with 8/15 per game. shot (and an unusual 3/9 from the line for him, an 80% shooter this season, perhaps betrayed by a bit of emotion).

If the other ex – the one in the Knicks jersey, OG Anunoby – finished with 14 points and 7 rebounds and the ninth victory in eleven games since he was in New York, the absolute protagonist of the game was Julius Randle, however, author of 18 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists, the eighth triple double of his career in the blue-orange jersey. But the words of one of the two Knicks superstars at the final siren were all for his former teammates, Quickley and Barrett: “These guys are really special to me, I’ve built a really special relationship with them. I know they talked about how much I was important to them, but the same goes for me too. Indeed, to be honest, it was they who taught me to be a leader, to behave in a certain way, to always be sincere and open with everyone in my relationships in locker room,” Randle said.