Wednesday's NBA playoffs: Rose, Randle rally Knicks past Hawks to tie series at 1-1

Associated Press

New York — Derrick Rose scored 26 points, Julius Randle shook off a miserable first half to lead a third-quarter turnaround and the New York Knicks beat the Atlanta Hawks 101-92 on Wednesday night in Game 2 to tie the series.

Randle was 0 for 6 with just two points at halftime and the Knicks were staring at a 13-point deficit. But with Rose moving into the starting lineup to open the third quarter, Randle scored 11 points on 4-for-5 shooting in the period as the Knicks surged into the lead.

New York Knicks' Derrick Rose (4) shoots as Atlanta Hawks' Bogdan Bogdanovic (13) defends during Game 2 in an NBA basketball first-round playoff series Wednesday, May 26, 2021, in New York.

The winner of the NBA's Most Improved Player award finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds despite another poor shooting night. He was 5 for 16 after going 6 for 23 in the opener.

But he came through with it counted along with Reggie Bullock, who made four 3-pointers in the second half and also had 15 points as the Knicks guaranteed there will be at least one more home game in this surprising season.

Trae Young scored 30 points for Atlanta after having 32 and hitting the tiebreaking shot in Game 1. Bogdan Bogdanovic and De'Andre Hunter added 18 apiece.

Game 3 is Friday night in Atlanta, where the Hawks will be allowed to welcome a full capacity crowd for the first time

Rose made the basket the gave the Knicks the lead for good at 93-91 with 4:45 to play and played 39 minutes as coach Tom Thibodeau stuck with one of his most trusted players to keep the series — and maybe season — from slipping away.

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Young made the tiebreaking basket with 0.9 seconds left in Game 1 and stamped himself as a villain figure for Knicks figures by holding his finger to his lip afterward to tell them to quiet down.

The profane chants that were aimed at Young in Game 1 started before the Hawks were even on the court for warmups and he was loudly booed every time he touched the ball early on.

His backcourt mate was the Knicks' bigger problem for a while. Bogdanovic scored eight straight Atlanta points midway through the second quarter to extend the lead to 43-37.

Then Young got hot from inside and outside — way outside. He pulled up from 30 feet for a 3-pointer, made a reverse layup, a jumper and another 3-pointer in a 12-1 run that made it 57-42 in the final minute of the half.

New York started Rose and Taj Gibson in the second half and Randle opened it with a 3-pointer for his first basket. RJ Barrett and Rose made back-to-back 3s to trim it to 61-55.

Atlanta seemed to have recovered and pushed it back to 12 midway through the period. Then Randle helped power a 16-2 spurt for the Knicks by picking up his aggression after playing passively, and his jumper after consecutive 3-pointers by Bullock capped the surge and made it 74-72 with 1:45 left in the period.

Burks' basket capped a 7-0 run and made it 88-78 with 8:34 to play but Young checked back in to lead a 13-3 burst that tied it at 91 when he threw a lob to Clint Capela.

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Thibodeau kept his normal starting lineup, even though he had pulled struggling point guard Elfrid Payton after about four minutes in each half in Game 1 and never reinserted him either time.

Payton lasted just over five minutes this time before the Knicks called time after Atlanta's 11-0 run and inserted Rose. Meanwhile, Randle had two airballs in his first three shot attempts.

More NBA playoffs

76ers 120, Wizards 95: Ben Simmons put a spin move on Russell Westbrook that sent him sprawling to the floor several minutes before a leg injury sent the NBA’s triple-double king to the locker room.

With Simmons soaring and Westbrook ailing, the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Washington Wizards 120-95 on Wednesday night to take a 2-0 lead in their first-round playoff series.

Game 3 is Saturday night at Washington.

Westbrook went down after colliding with Furkan Korkmaz early in the fourth quarter. He limped off the floor and was restrained by security after a fan threw popcorn at him as he was headed under the tunnel.

Jazz 141, Grizzlies 129: Donovan Mitchell scored 25 points in his much-anticipated return from a sprained ankle and the Utah Jazz overcame Ja Morant’s franchise-record 47 points in a 141-129 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday night, tying the first-round playoff series at a game apiece.

Mitchell, who was limited to 26 minutes, made five 3-pointers. Rudy Gobert had 21 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks for the Jazz.

Mike Conley had 20 points and a career-best 15 assists, and Bojan Bogdanovic added 18 points to help the Jazz knot the series.

Morant broke Conley’s Memphis playoff scoring record, and became the first player to score as many as 71 points in his first two career playoff games since the NBL merged with the BAA to create the NBA before the 1949-50 season.