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Nets complete preseason with Knicks at the Garden

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The Nets came back home from Montreal to play this one ... although they’ll be in Manhattan instead of Brooklyn. Still, they’ll get to sleep in their own beds. Comfortable! For those of you who missed it, the Nets had something of a third-quarter collapse against Kawhi and the Raptors and they never fully recovered. Oh well, on to the next one ... and the last one.

The Knicks and Nets are matching up for the second time for the final game of the preseason. They also play again next Friday in the home opener. So, a lot of New York basketball to consume. These two squads are going to be quite familiar with each other this year. By the time the season is complete, they will have played each other six times: six preseason and the usual four regular season.

Where To Follow The Game

YES and MSG are both going to have this one at 7:30 pm ET, so no shortage of options on that end. No radio for this one again, guessing that’ll start up with the regular season. If there are any new or impartial fans trying to reach a decision on whether to watch the game with the YES or MSG announcing teams, as good as Mike Breen and Walt “Clyde” Frazier have been and as much as they’re lauded, the YES crew is hands down the most entertaining in the league and I don’t think it’s particularly close.

Injuries

Demarre Carroll and Ed Davis should be back from taking the Raptors game off for rest. Shabazz Napier is still out with a hamstring and Allen Crabbe said his ankle injury is “not serious” but it is highly unlikely he’ll play in this one. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson had a full practice Thursday, but he too will not play. Hopefully he’ll be able to make his debut opening night. He’s already been missed on the court.

Courtney Lee, Enes Kanter, and Mitchell Robinson are all day-to-day, with Robinson the only one likely to play. The Knicks are resting Kanter and Lee still has a sore neck. Kristaps Porzingis is out for the foreseeable future.

The Game

As the final game of the preseason in MSG, this one will feel a little more serious than the previous three. Coach Kenny has to really start figuring out his rotations and lineups now, so expect to see something of a full effort Friday night. Jarrett Allen, by the way, has looked fantastic this preseason. He might be ready to make a mini-leap and really become a pillar of this young team. The Nets system is designed to give him good looks at the basket and ample space with which to work, and he’s been finishing with strength and confidence when given the opportunity.

D’Angelo Russell has been his usual infuriating self, taking ill-advised shots then somehow making them. After two games where he had only two turnovers, he lost the ball seven times in Montreal. He’s an enigma, and can swing any game with his engagement on the court. If he and Allen both have it working against the Knicks, especially with Kanter out, the Nets could be looking at a revenge win at MSG.

On the Knicks side, David Fizdale will be trying an experiment in New York’s last preseason game. With Frank Ntilikina having grown two inches (!) in the last year, Fizdale wants to see if his defensive ace, now 6’7”, can guard power forwards.

Player To Watch

Allonzo Trier, undrafted former Arizona star, is making a name for himself as the Knicks backup point guard. He has shades of Spencer Dinwiddie; tall, undervalued, talented. A “fallen angel” type, if you will. He also dropped 25 points in 26 minutes against the Nets last week, including 17 points in the second quarter. He could be dangerous unless the Nets decide to put him in his place.

Kanter-Dinwiddie Beef

From The Vault

For those of us who are still mourning the loss of the 2018 Yankees season, here are some home runs, of which the Yankees hit a record 267. Enjoy.

For those who don’t know, a home run is the dunk of baseball.