At the home of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the New York Knicks once again wilted in the fourth quarter.
Deja vu came back for the Knicks at the worst possible hour, as they let up 39 points in the final frame, falling behind by as much as 16 in a 125-116 loss to the Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena on Sunday night. Four Toronto starters had at least 19 points with old Metropolitan Nemesis Fred VanVleet leading the way with 28.
The Knicks (25-23) dropped their fourth in a row and third to the Raptors, dropping the annual quartet. Ontario native RJ Barrett led New York with 30 points and Julius Randle got back to his double-double pace with 23 points and 19 rebounds. That wasn’t enough to counter Toronto’s scoring assault, which bookended the contest with 37 in the opening frame and the aforementioned final frame tally.
Mired in their second-longest losing streak of the season, the Knicks have allowed at least 120 points in three of the last four games, all but one coming without the services of starting center Mitchell Robinson. The fourth quarter no-show over the border came less than 48 hours after they gave up 37 to the Atlanta Hawks.
A brief return to Madison Square Garden offers little relief: the Knicks face Donovan Mitchell and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night (7:30 pm ET, MSG) before dangerous visits to Boston and Brooklyn loom.
Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags
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