Cultures clash as sharp-shooting Warriors face defensive Knicks

Mar 17, 2024, 1:53 PM | Updated: Mar 18, 2024, 8:13 am

Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors drives to the basket against Donte DiVincenzo #0 of ...

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 29: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors drives to the basket against Donte DiVincenzo #0 of the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on February 29, 2024 in New York City. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

The New York Knicks get a chance to demonstrate just how much their defense has improved when they get a rematch with the Golden State Warriors on Monday night, this time in San Francisco.

The playoff hopefuls met Feb. 29 in New York, with the Warriors riding 31 points from Stephen Curry and 25 from Jonathan Kuminga to a 110-99 road win.

Since then, the Knicks (40-27) have won five of seven, holding their opponents under 100 points in six of the seven games.

One of those opponents was the Sacramento Kings, who were held to 35.5-percent shooting overall and 27.0 percent on 3-pointers in the Knicks’ 98-91 road victory Saturday night. The point total was Sacramento’s second-lowest of the season.

New York blocked nine shots, with Isaiah Hartenstein getting four and OG Anunoby three.

Anunoby missed the earlier Golden State game with an injured elbow, while Hartenstein played just 20 minutes, nearly five under his season average, and did not have a block.

Hartenstein remains on a minutes restriction because of Achilles soreness, but found time for 14 rebounds and seven points in 28 minutes Saturday against the Kings.

Hartenstein had a little fun with the media after Saturday’s win, noting that he’s changed his in-game routine of keeping his legs warm. Instead of getting stretched out in the locker room during his bench stints, he’s simply gone to an unoccupied area behind the basket.

“Y’all kept saying I was hurt, so I make sure y’all can see me now,” he said. “The good thing is I feel good, so I feel (the training staff is) doing a great job of building it up.”

The Knicks had only three blocks against the perimeter-oriented Warriors, who launched 44 3-pointers in the February win. Curry (eight) and Klay Thompson (four) combined for 12 of the club’s 14 made baskets from distance.

Curry returned from a three-game absence in Saturday’s 128-121 road win over the Los Angeles Lakers. He hit just three of his 10 3-point tries, but Thompson buried half his 10 attempts as Golden State once again used 14 made 3-pointers as the foundation for a win.

After watching his team lose two of three from the sidelines, Curry contributed 31 points to the win, but noted afterward the now-healthy Warriors (35-31) are far from a one-man show these days.

“They’re always going to talk about me and him,” Curry said of Saturday’s matchup with LeBron James, “but it was about our total group tonight.

“(Kuminga) getting off to a hot start, Klay coming off the bench with huge buckets, (Chris Paul) controlling the tempo the first six minutes of the fourth quarter, Draymond (Green) doing what he does. The list can go on. For us it takes a whole team to win, and we needed it. We needed it bad.”

Monday’s matchup opens a three-game homestand for the Warriors, who also will host the Memphis Grizzlies and Indiana Pacers this week.

Having beaten Portland as well as Sacramento to open their four-game trip, the Knicks will swing by Denver on Thursday before heading home.

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–Field Level Media


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