New York City is the hottest basketball city in the world right now with both the Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks playing exciting basketball.
Going 7-3 in their last ten games, the Nets are currently 34-16 and in second place in the NBA’s Eastern Conference standings. With a trio of Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving, the Nets have championship aspirations.
The seventh place Knicks currently sit in seventh place in the NBA’s Eastern conference standings with a 25-25 record. All Star Julius Randle is having a career year while averaging 23 points, 10.7 rebounds and 5.8 assists per game under head coach Tom Thibodeau.
Both teams will collide this evening at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY in a clash of the boroughs matchup.
NBA odds are in Brooklyn’s favor against the Knicks in this matchup despite Brooklyn being without Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin (injury maintenance), Landry Shamet (ankle) and Tyler Johnson (knee) for tonight’s game against the Knicks.
James Harden is not listed on the injury report, clearing the way for him to return.
“We’re not really concerned about their Big 3. We know what type of basketball we’ll be able to come into the game and play,” Knicks guard Reggie Bullock said last week.
“We’ll focus on our team. The game plan that coach draws up. Other than that, that’s all we’re focused on. The Knicks.”
The last matchup between the Nets and Knicks ended in controversy. After trailing big for most of the game the Knicks stormed back and had a chance to send the game into overtime in the final moments of the fourth quarter.
Randle tried to shoot a game-tying 3-pointer that would have sent the game into overtime, but Irving got his hand on the ball to prevent Randle from getting the shot up.
The correct call should have been a jump ball between Randle and Irving, but referee Scott Foster did not see Irving put his hand on the ball and instead called a travel on the Knicks’ star. “I was either going to foul early but I saw him lining up for a jump shot. I felt like I could get a hand on it,” Kyrie Irving said after the game.
“Scott called a travel, I thought Julius made a good play afterward, putting it [the ball] down because I was going to foul him after that just to get him to the free-throw line but that’s how it went.”