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Trae Young’s 45 points propel Hawks past Knicks

Mar 22, 2022; New York, New York, USA; Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young (11) dribbles against New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (23) and forward Obi Toppin (1) during the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Trae Young collected 45 points and eight assists in his return to Madison Square Garden on Tuesday, fueling the visiting Atlanta Hawks to a 117-111, come-from-behind victory over the New York Knicks.

Young overcame a sluggish start to make 13 of 25 shots from the floor, including 7 of 15 from 3-point range. His point total served as a career high at MSG, eclipsing his 42-point effort on Dec. 17, 2019.

New York led by 10 early in the fourth quarter, but Young drained a 3-pointer to forge a tie at 105-105 with 2:54 to play.

Atlanta’s Bogdan Bogdanovic and De’Andre Hunter each followed with a trey on consecutive possessions. Young’s crossover sent Taj Gibson to the floor before the Hawks star calmly sank a jumper to push the lead to 113-105 with 1:04 remaining.

Young was playing in his first game in New York since he embraced the role of the villain while scoring 36 points in Atlanta’s first-round, series-clinching victory over the Knicks in Game 5 last spring. He missed in the Hawks’ first trip back to MSG on Christmas Day due to NBA’s health and safety protocol.

Bogdanovic scored a season-high 32 points and New York native Kevin Huerter added 14 for the Hawks, who have won five of their past seven games. Atlanta also averted a sweep in the four-game season series.

RJ Barrett collected 30 points and 13 rebounds and Alec Burks added 21 points for the Knicks, who guaranteed themselves a losing season for the eighth time in the past nine campaigns.

New York played without Julius Randle, who was sidelined due to a sore right quadriceps tendon. He also was fined $40,000 by the NBA earlier on Tuesday for directing hostile language toward a game official during the Knicks’ 108-93 home loss to the Utah Jazz on Sunday.

New York opened the fourth quarter on a 10-2 run to take a 99-89 lead before former Knick Danilo Gallinari and Bogdanovic brought Atlanta back within one. The former made a 3-pointer and a mid-range jumper while the latter added a three buckets and two foul shots as the Hawks cut the deficit to 103-102 with 3:42 to go.

–Field Level Media