The New York Knicks likely would have won Sunday's Game 1 of their first-round playoff series against the Atlanta Hawks with even a mediocre performance from star Julius Randle.
Alas, he shot 6-of-23 from the field, missed a potential go-ahead three in the final seconds and was outplayed by Trae Young during a 107-105 loss at Madison Square Garden. His performance largely spoiled a head-turning showing from Alec Burks (27 points, four assists and three rebounds) and New York's bench.
"Listen, I'm not making no excuses," Randle told reporters. "I've got to be better and I will be better. I'll just leave it at that."
He also gave credit to the Hawks and said he will adjust heading into Game 2:
Randle will have to do just that if the Knicks plan on winning this series because losing the first two games at home would put them in a daunting hole.
The team as a whole will also have to figure out a way to slow down Young, who hit the game-winning shot in the final second and finished with 32 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds.