Heat vs. Knicks score, takeaways: Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo lead Miami to 109-101 win in Game 4 over New York
Miami now has a 3-1 lead in the series over New York
The Miami Heat pulled out a 109-101 victory over the New York Knicks in Game 4 on Monday night, and they now sit just one win away from a second consecutive Eastern Conference finals appearance, and their third in the past four seasons. Conversely, the Knicks are now just one loss away from having their season come to an end as the series shifts back to New York for Game 5 on Wednesday night.
It was the usual suspects who led the way for Miami in Game 4. Jimmy Butler had 27 points, ten assists and six rebounds, and Bam Adebayo added a 23-point, 13-rebound double-double. All 10 Heat players who appeared in the game scored at least two points, and that varied production helped Miami to walk away with the win.
The marquee names showed up for the Knicks. Jalen Brunson had 32 points and 11 assists, and R.J. Barrett added 24 points, four rebounds and three assists. Julius Randle was the third Knicks player to reach the 20-point plateau. He had 20 points, nine rebounds and three assists before fouling out in the fourth quarter. The Knicks didn't get much outside of that trio though, as the rest of the roster combined for just 25 total points.
With their season hanging in the balance, the Knicks will now have to quickly regroup and figure out a way to bounce back in Game 5. Before moving ahead to that game, though, here's a look at three key takeaways from Miami's Game 4 victory.
New York's lack of bench production
Bench production was a major factor in Game 4, as it has been throughout the series. Miami had two players score in double figures off of the wood -- Kyle Lowry (15 points) and Caleb Martin (10 points). In all, the Heat tallied 32 total bench points, and that output helped to supplement the starters' scoring. The Knicks, on the other hand, got very little production from their second unit, as they scored just 10 total bench points in the contest.
So, the quick math says that the Knicks' bench was outscored by 22 points in a game they lost by eight. That's not a recipe for success for New York, but it has been a trend, as the Knicks' bench has been outscored the by the Heat's in every single game in the series so far. Overall, the Heat have looked like the deeper team, and that's a big part of the reason they have been able to establish a 3-1 lead.
Immanuel Quickly's absence was a factor here, too, as he is New York's best bench scorer. But, the Heat were still outproducing New York's reserves even when Quickley was out there, so it seems unlikely that his presence would have made too much of a difference. If the Heat are able to go on to close out the series, their superior depth will be one of the main reasons why.
I thought bam Adebayo really help to set the tone out of the gate for Miami in this game with his aggression on the offensive end. Adebayo, who can sometimes be too passive, connected on all four of his field goal attempts and finished with nine points in the first quarter. He was even more aggressive in the second quarter, as he attempted seven shots and made three of them for a total of seven points. The numbers aren't eye-popping, but the fact that he attempted 11 shots in the first half shows that Adebayo was in attack mode and looking to score from the onset. The Heat are at their most dangerous when Adebayo is aggressive, as it works to open things up for the shooters around the perimeter. I'm sure Heat coach Erik Spoelstra will want to see Adebayo continue to be assertive in Game 5, and beyond.
Caleb Martin poster dunk
Caleb Martin probably had the play of the game with his poster dunk late in the fourth quarter of the contest. Martin received a pass from Jimmy Butler on the wing and immediately attacked a reckless closeout from Julius Randle. Two Knicks defenders converged to stop Martin, but both were a split-second too late, as Martin was able to drive all the way to the rim and finish with a flush. Check it out:
The dunk pushed Miami's lead from six to eight, and helped to fire up the home crowd. Plus, it provided fans with an exciting highlight from a game that wasn't necessarily steeped in them.
The Heat are now just one win away from their second consecutive Eastern Conference finals appearance, and third in the last four years.
And that's a wrap. Heat win 109-101. Bam and Jimmy combined for 50 in the win for Miami.
The Heat are 30 seconds away from taking a commanding 3-1 lead in the series.
Josh Hart has fouled out of the game. He'll join Julius Randle on the bench as the second Knicks player to foul out of this game.
Man, the Heat are just killing the Knicks on the offensive glass in the fourth quarter.
Julius Randle just fouled out of the game with 2:58 remaining. The Knicks will now have to try to complete the comeback without him.
Caleb Martin poster dunk!
Hart and Randle both have five fouls. Brunson has four. The Knicks have to be careful down the stretch of the game.
R.J. Barrett is doing his best to keep the Knicks in this game. He's the third Knicks player with 20-plus points on the evening, joining Brunson and Randle.
The Heat are outscoring the Knicks by 15 points from beyond the arc at this point in the game. That has been a major factor in a game that is relatively close.
Josh Hart just got whistled for his fifth foul early in the fourth quarter. He wasn't happy with the call and let the ref know about it.
Jalen Brunson has now scored 20-plus points in every game for the Knicks so far this postseason. Pretty impressive.
Jalen Brunson just appeared to tweak his left ankle, which he injured earlier in the series. It will be something to keep an eye on for the rest of the game.
The Knicks still need other players to step up around their stars. Barrett has answered the call, but the rest of the roster outside of Barrett/Brunson/Randle has scored a total of just 25 points through three quarters.
Three quarters of action are in the books. The Heat hold a 79-73 lead over the Knicks. Miami is 12 minutes away from taking a commanding 3-1 in the series.
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