In the first half of the New York Knicks’ Game 1 win over the Cavaliers on Saturday, Jalen Brunson was surprisingly more of a non-factor. After picking up his third foul early in the second quarter, the point guard headed to the bench.
But if there were any Cavaliers fans out there that thought Brunson would stay quiet, those hopes quickly faded in the second half. He scored six points in the first half but added 21 in the second half to help secure New York’s 101-97 victory. There’s a reason why he was brought up in the conversation to win the NBA Clutch Player of the Year Award. Knicks fans have witnessed his late-game heroics all season.
However, there’s one Cleveland player that attributed Brunson’s play to being nothing more than his “antics.”
Isaac Okoro has pathetic response to Knicks’ Jalen Brunson’s Game 1 outing
Jalen Brunson made all four of his free throw attempts in Game 1, as did Isaiah Hartenstein. Julius Randle and Immanuel Quickley had four free throw attempts, too. Donovan Mitchell shot 4-of-6 from the charity stripe and ironically enough, Isaac Okoro shot 4-of-4.
It’s safe to say that Brunson’s “antics” weren’t what led to New York’s win. Well, if by “antics” Okoro meant his clutch factor, that’s true. Too bad that isn’t what he meant.
It’s a good thing for Knicks fans that Okoro shot 1-of-6 from the field and 0-of-4 from three for only six points. He averaged 6.4 points during the regular season so that checks out. He’s one of the Cavaliers’ best defenders, which is part of the reason why Cleveland finished the regular season with the league’s best defense. However, his game doesn’t translate on the offensive end.
The No. 5 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft was named to the All-Rookie Second Team in 2020-21 after averaging 9.6 points and 3.1 rebounds. Since then, his numbers have actually declined each year.
Okoro should’ve probably thought twice before giving Jalen Brunson and the Knicks perfect bulletin board material entering Game 2. Instead, he did the opposite.
Are we certain that Mark Cuban didn’t pay Okoro to say that? The NBA needs to launch another investigation ASAP!
But really, Isaac Okoro should probably spend less time taking shots at Jalen Brunson and instead worry about contributing to his team.