NBA Twitter Praises Knicks' R.J. Barrett for 'Bounce Back' Game in win vs. Heat

Erin WalshFebruary 3, 2023

New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Brooklyn Nets, Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)
AP Photo/Mary Altaffer

The New York Knicks bounced back from a disappointing loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday with a 106-104 win over the Miami Heat on Thursday at Madison Square Garden.

With star point guard Jalen Brunson having been ruled out due to a non-COVID illness, it was R.J. Barrett who stepped up with a bounce-back performance against Miami after being benched in the fourth quarter by Tom Thibodeau on Tuesday against the Lakers.

The 22-year-old finished with 30 points, eight rebounds and four assists in 41 minutes against Miami. He made 13 of 23 shots from the floor, but missed all five of his three-point attempts.

Despite going 0-of-5 from deep, NBA fans were quick to praise Barrett for persevering and bouncing back with an impressive 30-point night following his benching earlier in the week:

Fred Katz @FredKatz

Quite the bounceback from RJ Barrett, who now has 18 points in the second half.

Andrew Cunningham @25acjr

RJ Barrett decided he wanted to hoop today ☹️😒

Ashley Nicole Moss @AshNicoleMoss


B.W. Carlin @BaileyCarlin


Charlie Quinn @CharlieQuinnMMA

Watching RJ Barrett take over in the 2nd half tonight after Thibs benched him the other night says all you need to know. Please move on from Thibs before it's too late…<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Knicks?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Knicks</a>

Will Pesek @WillPesek_

RJ Barrett responding to his benching on Tuesday night in a big way. 30 points for him. Knicks and Heat going shot for shot right now. Adebayo having a terrific quarter.

jumpman dep ⛹️‍♂️ (28-25) @TheRealDEP

after being benched during the 4th qtr of the last couple games and declining to speak to the media because of his frustration with being benched, rj barrett RESPONDED:<br><br>30 pts<br>8 rebs<br>4 asts<br>13/23 fg<br><br>W <a href="https://t.co/V1GCGO6Xgj">pic.twitter.com/V1GCGO6Xgj</a>

Robby Lefko @rlefkee

RJ Barrett very good

Derek @DFlex2123

This is the RJ Barrett the Knicks need.

Tamir 🥷🏾 @mirthee1st

RJ Barrett has answered the call

Poppa Left @livelikelefty

RJ Barrett making a statement.

Barrett entered Thursday's game averaging 20.1 points, 5.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 46 games while shooting 43.3 percent from the floor and 34 percent from deep. His numbers are right around where they were last season, which is good, but the Knicks are likely hoping he can take another step forward in his development as the season progresses.

The Knicks improved to 28-25 with Thursday's win over Miami and sit seventh in the Eastern Conference. New York will need Barrett to continue playing at a high level if they hope to improve in the standings.