Randle, Payton lead Knicks to NBA win over Trail Blazers

New York (AFP) –


Julius Randle and Elfrid Payton each scored 22 points and the New York Knicks defeated the Portland Trail Blazers 110-99 on Saturday in an NBA matinee game.

Randle added a team-high 11 rebounds while the Knicks had 18 points from Canada's R.J. Barrett and 16 more from reserve Alec Burks among six double-digit scorers.

"We're just trying to play hard. Winning plays happen when you play hard and that's what happened," Burks said.

Burks, on his sixth club in just over two NBA seasons, said the hunger to outhustle their rivals motivated New York's 50-28 dominance on points in the paint and let them hold off a Portland rally down the stretch.

"Just contest every shot, stay hot, play our same defense, play hard, get our rebounds," he said. "And that's what we did."

The Knicks improved to 11-13, sixth in the Eastern Conference, with their second win in a row while the Trail Blazers fell to 12-10, level with San Antonio and Golden State for sixth in the Western Conference.

Damian Lillard led Portland with a game-high 29 points while Gary Trent Jr. added 19.

Another nine games were on Saturday's NBA schedule, with the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers playing host to Detroit, Eastern Conference leader Philadelphia entertaining Brooklyn and Milwaukee at Cleveland.