With the Knicks season on the line, the Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau leaned on his backcourt duo of Jalen Brunson and Quentin Grimes, playing all 48 minutes of the Knicks’ thrilling 112-103 Game 5 win over the Miami Heat. Brunson was brilliant, just as he’s been all playoffs; his heroic 38 points, nine rebounds and seven assists represent one of the best performances in Knicks playoffs history. Still, it was Grimes who made the biggest play of the game, stonewalling and then stripping Jimmy Butler with 1:40 left in the fourth quarter, just seconds after seemingly injuring his knee on a Bam Adebayo screen. Although Grimes scored just eight points, his rousing, one-legged steal of Butler to protect a narrow six point lead is the kind of play that would become instantly iconic if the Knicks come back to win the series.
“It’s the playoffs,” Quentin Grimes said after the game. “You gotta do whatever you can to win. It’s what you’re built for, it’s what you watch as a kid. I was hurt a little bit, but it’s not going to stop me from doing whatever I can to either get a stop or just disrupt the play like how I came up the steal. I knew I just had to fight through it and help the team get a win.”
While Grimes injured his shoulder in the first round of the playoffs against the Cavs and came off the bench to play just 19.3 minutes per game for the first three games of the Heat series, he’s regained his spot in the Knicks’ starting lineup in the last two games. In Game 4, Grimes played 42 minutes, which he would then top by playing all 48 in Game 5. In doing so, Grimes became just the third Knick to play all 48 minutes of a game in the playoffs, joining Stephon Marbury and Brunson.
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