In Thursday night’s 113-83 victory over the Brooklyn Nets, the New York Knicks snapped a nine game losing streak. While the Knicks were up by 25 points at the end of the third quarter, things got tense early in the fourth between Andrea Bargnani and Kevin Garnett after fighting for a rebound. Both players had to be separated and were assessed double technicals after the officials reviewed the play. However, Bargnani wasn’t finished with Garnett.
A couple possessions later, Pablo Prigioni threw a cross-court pass to Bargnani who drilled a jumper with Garnett defending him. Running back down the court, Bargnani said something to Garnett and Joey Crawford immediately ejected him. With the Knicks up by 30 points, the bench stood up to applaud Bargnani for taking a stand.
After the game, Bargnani responded to Garnett saying that he wasn’t speaking Italian and is happy the Knicks got the win via the New York Post:
“I wasn’t speaking Italian, but that’s not important. The game was important. I’m happy we won. I don’t want to talk about referees and what happened. I got ejected, and that’s OK. We got the game and that’s what counts.”
Since entering the league, critics have called Bargnani “soft” and it’s a label no one wants to have. While no one should expect Bargnani to continue the trash-talking, it was an important moment for him and his teammates. Bargnani showed that he was going to take a stand and it seemed to bring the entire team together. With the Knicks snapping their losing streak, they’ll look to win two straight against the Orlando Magic on Friday night.