Brunson scores 32 points, Knicks win 6th straight and send Heat to 6th loss in a row, 125-109


NEW YORK — Jalen Brunson had 32 points and eight assist and the New York Knicks beat Miami 125-109 on Saturday, winning their sixth straight and sending the Heat to a sixth consecutive loss.

Julius Randle added 19 points and nine rebounds for the Knicks, but left with 4:27 remaining after appearing to land hard on his shoulder when Jaime Jaquez Jr. stepped in front of him trying to take a charge on Randle’s drive to the basket.

Brunson helped the Knicks break it open for good with a 13-3 spurt to open the fourth quarter and then sent the Heat into a timeout as a sold-out crowd roared when his 3-pointer midway through the period made it 112-96.

OG Anunoby also had 19 points for the Knicks, who improved to 12-2 this month after he made his first start on New Year’s Day.

Jimmy Butler scored 28 points for the Heat, who got Jaquez back after a six-game absence because of a groin injury, but were outscored 36-23 in the fourth quarter. Duncan Robinson had 19 points and Tyler Herro finished with 18.

Kevin Love also was back from an illness, finally giving the Heat their full complement of players. Coach Erik Spoelstra said just as important was the Heat getting back to the way they normally compete. They certainly fell short of their standard Thursday when they were blown out 143-110 on their home floor by Boston.

The Heat looked much more like themselves, but after Butler brought them back from a 13-point deficit to a tie late in the third quarter, the game quickly got away while he was on the bench resting to start the fourth.

Brunson had two baskets in New York’s flurry to open the fourth and finished 12 for 22 from the field, making four 3-pointers.

The Knicks led 82-69 with 3 1/2 minutes left in the third quarter, but Butler scored nine points and Robinson made two 3-pointers in a 17-4 spurt that tied it at 86 with 13 seconds remaining. Randle made a 3-pointer at the buzzer to give the Knicks the lead back going to the fourth.

Knicks center Isaiah Hartenstein returned after missing two games with a left Achilles tendon injury and had four points and six rebounds.

UP NEXT

Heat: Host Phoenix on Monday night.

Knicks: At Charlotte on Monday night.

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AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA



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