3 Major Takeaways From Knicks Game 1 Win Against Philadelphia

Here's our quick look at the three biggest takeaways from Knnicks-76ers Game 1 and what stands out heading into Game 2
New York Knicks guard Josh Hart (3) celebrates with guard
New York Knicks guard Josh Hart (3) celebrates with guard / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports
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Slowing down Maxey

Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey (0) looks to drive past
Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey (0) looks to drive past / Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

As much as Joel Embiid was inhibiting during Game 1, the Knicks had no answer for slowing down the prolific scoring of Tyrese Maxey. 

A player building his resume towards earning a max contract soon, Maxey entered Saturday’s contest averaging 25.9 points per game on 45% shooting from the field and dishing 6.2 assists at the 20th best rate in the NBA. In three regular season games against New York, the point guard put up an average of 26.3 points on 44.8% shooting and added a three-point touch of 33.3%.

This time, Maxey was one of the few players willing to take the basketball straight to the rim and copy the physical style of play that the Knicks gave them from the jump. He made 14 of his total 17 shots from the interior in 44 minutes, capturing the crowd with his mesmerizing moves underneath the basket that led to quick offensive production for Philadelphia. 

The Knicks did a good job of shutting down the 76ers role players and placing the scoring pressure on one guy which has typically led to their collapses during the regular season. They just couldn’t make life difficult for the second head of the 76ers’ dragon and that keeps the series closer than desired if Embiid doesn’t return to full strength to pose the biggest threat to New York’s success. 

If they can take a stronger approach to protecting the interior and forcing shots for the outside, they will see Maxey nail at least two threes on average. Still, it’s the elimination of the easier shots that will limit his offense and force the supporting cast to step up if they don’t want an 0-2 deficit heading back to Philly.. 

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