Immanuel Quickley scored 13 of his 25 points during a decisive run spanning the third and fourth quarters Friday night for the host New York Knicks, who overcame a slow start to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers, 102-81.
It was the second time in three games Quickley has scored at least 25 points off the bench. The rookie scored a career-high 31 points in a 116-113 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday night.
RJ Barrett had 24 points Friday and Julius Randle scored 16 points for the Knicks, who trailed by 10 points in the first quarter before snapping a three-game losing streak. Austin Rivers added 13 points off the bench.
Darius Garland scored 24 points and Collin Sexton finished with 17 points for the Cavaliers, who scored their fewest points of the season as they fell for the third time in four games. Jarrett Allen had 15 points. Andre Drummond, the NBA’s leading rebounder, had 15 rebounds but was held to four points, almost 15 below his average.
The teams traded runs throughout the first half. The Cavaliers raced out to a 13-3 lead as the Knicks missed nine of their first 10 shots, but Rivers scored seven points in a quarter-ending 16-4 run that gave New York a 19-17 lead.
Dylan Windler had five of the Cavaliers’ points in a 7-0 spurt that began the second quarter. A dunk by Isaac Okoro gave the Cavaliers a 26-23 lead with 7:34 left, but Barrett scored seven points as the Knicks ended the half on a 24-9 run. New York took the lead for good on a layup by Obi Toppin with 6:29 remaining.
Sexton and Garland scored eight points apiece as the Cavaliers exited the locker room on a 16-5 run to pull within 52-49 midway through the third. The Knicks responded by taking control with a 28-8 surge that carried over into the fourth.
Quickley scored the final six points of the third and drained back-to-back 3-pointers early in the fourth to lengthen the Knicks’ lead to 80-57. The Cavaliers got no closer than 12 the rest of the way.