Knicks snag thrilling double-OT win over rival Celtics in opener

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The Knicks wanted more offense in the offseason and got it. But it came at a cost to their defense and Wednesday’s season opener thrill ride showed they will still need to shore up.

After blowing an 11-point lead in the final 3:44 of regulation, the Knicks still managed to survive a rollercoaster ride in double overtime, 138-134 over the Celtics as Julius Randle poured in 35 points and newcomer Evan Fournier added 32 in a sparkling debut at a charged-up Garden.

Randle has a partner. Fournier hit the go-ahead 3-pointer with 56 seconds left in double OT.

It was survival but in the end Kemba Walker’s debut was a winning one against his old team as the Knicks held off Jaylen Brown’s 46 points – 20 in the first quarter.

Knicks fan celebrate after Evan Fournier, who scored 32 points, hits a 3-pointer in the Knicks' 138-134 win over the Celtics in double overtime.
Knicks fan celebrate after Evan Fournier, who scored 32 points, hits a 3-pointer in the Knicks’ 138-134 win over the Celtics in double overtime.
NBAE via Getty Images

Fournier and Randle came up huge in the double overtime to repel the Celtics. Fournier, the Knicks’ big offseason acquisition, finished with 32 points – 13 of 25 from the field and of 13 from 3.

Walker was the goat on a key play that nearly cost them dearly . Randle’s two free throws juiced the lead to 3 points with 4.8 seconds left in the fourth.

Julius Randle, who scored 35 points, celebrates during the Knicks' win.
Julius Randle, who scored 35 points, celebrates during the Knicks’ win.
N.Y. Post: Charles Wenzelberg

The Celtics’ Dennis Schroeder inbounded to Jayson Tatum, who slipped, regained his balance to send a long feed to Marcus Smart. Walker was slow to dart toward him and a wide-open Smart drilled the 3-pointer to send the game into overtime. And two overtimes.

Walker, the Bronx native who received a rousing ovation in pregame intros, was serviceable offensively with 10 points, 3 assists and 8 rebounds in 35 minutes but got sloppy with two turnovers in the final minute of regulation.

Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau pulled Walker in the second overtime for Derrick Rose, who had an off night.

But the Knicks –as they did all last season – found a way to win with a new boost from Fournier.

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