The Miami Heat defeated the New York Knicks 108-101 in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinals matchup on Sunday afternoon at Madison Square Garden.
After going down by 11 following one quarter of play, Miami turned things around and won every subsequent quarter. It should be noted that New York was without star Julius Randle for this game. Randle has a sprained left ankle and his status for the remainder of the series is currently unknown. There is no denying the impact of losing Randle, as he averaged a double-double for the Knicks this season.
Jimmy Butler was once again the man of the hour with a team-leading 25 points for Miami. While it was a small amount compared to other postseason games for the former All-Star, Butler’s 25 points were big in this game. Miami’s leader played 43 minutes and contributed 11 rebounds as well. Though Butler isn’t a fan of the nickname “Playoff Jimmy”, he continues to shine when the light is the brightest.
Gabe Vincent tossed in 20 points of his own, which he paired with five assists. This was the second consecutive game, where Vincent tallied at least 20 points. In the series-clinching win over the Milwaukee Bucks last week, Vincent contributed 22 points for the Heat.
The Heat and Knicks will play Game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinals matchup on Tuesday night at MSG.