Julius Randle might be one of the last players in the NBA you’d want to get run over by, but that’s exactly what happened to Tom Thibodeau in Miami on Friday night.
Randle drained a contested fall-away 3-pointer with just over one second remaining to give the Knicks a 122-120 victory over the Heat.
During the celebration after the game, the 6-foot-8, 250-pound forward bowled over his head coach.
“He’s a little mad at me right now,” Randle joked after the game. “I need to talk to him.”
Thibodeau said that the only Knicks player who helped him up was Immanuel Quickley.
After the game, reporters asked Randle about the shot.
“Fate,” he said with a grin. “It felt good honestly when it left my hand. I was in the zone I guess.”
Randle scored 43 points as the Knicks won their eighth straight game and 10th out of 12.
“We have a special group and it’s about taking it day by day, step by step,” Randle said.
Thibodeau gushed about the shot after the game.
“Unbelievable,” he said. “Tough shot — put it in. Tip your hat.”
Thibodeau also praised Randle for helping teammates get good shots.
“I thought they created really good shots for each other — I thought Julius did a lot of that as well, where he was the one creating.
“I thought his all-around game was good.”
Thibodeau also had high praise for Jalen Brunson.
“He’s going to give you everything he has. You know that he’s tough-minded,” Thibodeau said.
“He’s going to make plays. He got nicked up, he keeps going, he never stops.”
The Knicks are 38-27 and in fifth place in the Eastern Conference, one game behind the 39-26 Cavaliers for fourth and the right to home court advantage in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
The Knicks’ next game is Monday in Boston against the Celtics.