“Frustrated” Josh Hart’s Julius Randle & OG Anunoby Admission Could End Knicks’ Postseason Dreams

Published 04/01/2024, 1:12 AM EDT

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USA Today via Reuters

The Knicks’ season started strong this year, stronger than any other year in recent memory. However, their hopes and dreams are crumbling down as the team has been riddled with injuries. Tonight, missing key players like Mitchell Robinson, Julius Randle, and even OG Anunoby, the Knicks fell short by a heartbreaking 1 point to the Oklahoma City Thunder in a nail-biter that ended 112-113. In the post-game press conference, Josh Hart spoke some straight truths that may leave Knicks fans feeling frustrated.

When asked about the game, Hart sighed and said, “Obviously extremely frustrating.” He went on to say he’s not privy to the medical discussions, but believes the team needs to focus on winning with the guys they have available and emphasized that if OG Anunoby and Julius Randle come back, “they’ll be pleasantly surprised.


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Soon after stating that, Hart continued, “We gotta figure out a way to, you know when JB’s out to get good looks, quality looks. Get guys in the proper position, and play to their strengths. I think that’s one of the big things. So, look at it and see what we can do better.

New York Knicks vs. OKC Thunder Match Player Stats

The shorthanded Knicks (44-30) fell short in a thrilling 113-112 defeat to the Oklahoma City Thunder (52-22) on Sunday night. Missing players Mitchell Robinson (out all season), Julius Randle (out 28 games), and OG Anunoby (out 7 games), the Knicks battled hard but ultimately couldn’t overcome a late surge by the Thunder.


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The Knicks trailed by as many as 8 points in the 4th quarter. Jalen Brunson, the lone healthy star, tried to keep his team afloat. He finished with a game-high 30 points and 7 assists, but the Knicks desperately needed more offensive firepower. Josh Hart, another bright spot for the team ended with a double-double (13 points, 15 rebounds).


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The Thunder, on the other hand, caught fire in the final frame. They shot a staggering 15-for-19 from the field (including 5-for-8 from three) in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Knicks by a significant margin. Jalen Williams led the way for OKC, exploding for a game-high 33 points, while Josh Giddey nearly bagged a triple-double with 16 points, 13 rebounds, and 12 assists.

With 4.1 seconds remaining and the Knicks down by one, Brunson slithered through the defense for a layup, putting New York back in the lead. However, replays showed potential contact on the play, and the Knicks’ hopes for a free throw opportunity to extend the lead vanished after the refs ruled no foul. Out of a timeout, the Thunder designed a play for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who returned after a 2-game absence with a bruised quad. He rose over Deuce McBride’s arm and drained a clutch 15-foot turnaround jumper with just 1.8 seconds left, sealing the victory for Oklahoma City. Shai ended up chipping in 19 points, with 2 rebounds, and 3 assists.


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With 8 games remaining in the regular season, the Knicks remain in a tight race for the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference while OKC has clinched its playoff spot. On April 3, the Knicks will face the Miami Heat at the Kaseya Center. Will the injury-plagued Knicks emerge victorious or will the injuries get the best of them? Comment your thoughts below!

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Written by:

Aakritee Raajj


One take at a time

A lawyer turned NBA Writer at EssentiallySports, Aakritee Raajj found herself in the right realm as soon as she dropped her black coat to don the Mavericks’ jersey in the NBA department. That’s how the content strategy desk trusts her with any coverage demanding a legal knowhow. She became a fan of the league in the late 2000’s after Dirk Nowitzki upset the Miami Heat in Game 6 during 2011 NBA Finals.
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Edited by:

Saumya Khanduja