NEW YORK – LeBron James couldn’t be in the building. Anthony Davis hardly was.
With one superstar suspended and another sick, the Los Angeles Lakers were already in big trouble. Then they created one more for themselves by falling into a 25 point hole.
“We weren’t playing hard enough. Singles,” said Russell Westbrook.
They turned the tide, but the New York Knicks recovered, with Evan Fournier scoring 26 points and Immanuel Quickley adding 12 of his 14 in the fourth quarter for a 106-100 win on Tuesday night.
Julius Randle added 20 points, 16 rebounds and five assists for the Knicks, but sat for eight minutes of the fourth quarter after committing his fifth foul. Quickley made sure it didn’t matter, scoring four 3-pointers in the period.
“He’s fearless,” Randle said.
Westbrook had 31 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists, with 18 points in a sensational third quarterback that helped Los Angeles tie the game. But with Carmelo Anthony shooting at his old home, the Lakers were never able to take the lead.
They beat Detroit on Sunday after overcoming a 17-point deficit in the game from which James was sent off for hitting Pistons center Isaiah Stewart in the face and spilling blood. The NBA suspended the superstar forward for one game.
But the best Los Angeles could do in this one was to draw twice after New York dominated most of the first two quarters.
“No team wants to go down 10-0, but it’s a long game and we fought back and gave ourselves a chance,” Westbrook said.
Davis, who woke up with a fever, had 20 points on a 7-for-17 shot. He said he only arrived about 45 minutes before the game and didn’t have had his usual warm-up.
“So I think he was a bit exhausted and we used him differently,” said coach Frank Vogel. an impact.”
Anthony was just 3 of 14 for 12 points, and the Lakers lost for the fourth time in five games.
Randle went to the bench with his fifth foul with 9:18 remaining and was hit with a technical foul from there that saw the Lakers narrow him down to 90-87. But Obi Toppin scored before Quickley scored to 3 points to bring him down to eight, and it was back in double digits when another 3 from Quickley made it 105-93 with 4:58 to go.
“We were just trying to buy some time there and that group ended up running a bit, so that allowed us to go a little bit longer (without Randle),” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said.
The Knicks took a 10-0 lead to 36-15 over RJ Barrett’s 3-pointers with 1:11 remaining in the first quarter. It was 59-35 with less than 5 minutes left in the half before the Lakers pulled off a 16-2 streak that brought it down to 61-51 just before the break.
“We can be a really good man, we just have to trust the way we play and when we have a way to play, stick with it,” Fournier said.
The Lakers scored nine in a row to open the third and reduce it to 63-60, and eventually tie for the first time at 79 on Anthony’s dunk.
Lakers: Anthony received a loud ovation when recording during the first quarter. … Talen Horton-Tucker missed all eight shots in a scoreless exit.
Knicks: New York played without backup point guard Derrick Rose (sprained right ankle) and injured crosses Mitchell Robinson and Taj Gibson. Thibodeau said Robinson, who suffered a concussion, was doing better but still had to clear league protocols before he could return. … New York has won nine of the last 11 home games.
MISS THE MSG
Vogel called James one of the classiest players in the league who always plays the game the right way. He spoke to James, who was disappointed to miss a second consecutive visit to one of his favorite arenas. He was injured last season when the Lakers played at Madison Square Garden.
“He wanted to play. I don’t want to get involved more than that,” Vogel said.
Lakers: Visit Indiana Wednesday.
Knicks: Phoenix host Friday.