This was the Quentin Grimes the Knicks had been waiting on.
The defensive stalwart broke out of a lengthy shooting slump with his best offensive performance in weeks.
Grimes sank six 3-pointers and scored 22 points in the Knicks’ 142-118 rout of the Nets at a sold-out Garden.
“Julius [Randle] made a number of good plays after the switch, then they went to double him, and he got it out quick,” coach Tom Thibodeau said. “But I thought that enabled Quentin to get into the game, and Quentin got a good rhythm from that.”
He was hot early, hitting three 3-pointers in the opening quarter and never really cooled off in a confidence-building effort for the second-year guard.
The six triples were his most since hitting seven in an overtime loss to the Mavericks on Dec. 27.
“QG’s somebody we’re going to need down the stretch,” Randle said. “Tonight, everybody felt good about how they played and contributed to the win.”
Grimes entered the All-Star break struggling from 3-point range, but he has begun to find his stroke.
Even before this performance, he had hit 5 of 12 from distance in the three previous games.
March has arrived and Derrick Rose is still a Knick, meaning he is no longer eligible for the playoffs if he received a buyout and wanted to join a different team.
That, however, isn’t something Rose has said interests him. It looks like he’ll be a Knick the rest of the year.
“He contributes in a big-time way to our team. We know how important he is to the team,” Thibodeau said. “Whether he was a starter coming off an injury or coming off the bench or not in the rotation, he’s a very positive guy.
“He’s been through a lot. And going through adversity, he’s gone through it all. He’s always lifting people up.”
Jalen Brunson wore a No. 88 Patrick Kane jersey to and from the victory. He grew up in the Chicago area and has been a fan of the newest Ranger for quite some time.
“He’s just a legend. I respect him a lot,” Brunson said. “I didn’t really have a personal relationship [with him] at all, but just a lot of respect for him.”
Knicks rookie Trevor Keels scored his first career points in mop-up duty, sinking a 3-pointer in the final seconds. He was the team’s second-round pick (42nd overall) out of Duke.
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