NEW ORLEANS (AP) Brandon Ingram poured in an array of mid-range pullups, turnarounds and fades. Zion Williamson kept finding ways to power toward the rim and finish with touch.

The Pelicans tandem presented problems for a Knicks team playing a second road game in a different city in less than 24 hours.

Ingram scored 26 points, Williamson added 24 and New Orleans remained unbeaten on this young NBA season with a 96-87 victory over New York on Saturday night.

Williamson said that when he and Ingram are on the court together in the fourth quarter, "we kind of give each other that look, like, all right, it's on us now.”

And that's how Pelicans coach Willie Green wants it.

“They carried us tonight offensively and that’s what they need to do night in and night out,” Green said. “That's what they're capable of doing and we’re going to need those two guys to continue to attack."

Williamson, who missed most of last season because of a hamstring injury last Jan. 2, has now scored at least 23 points in each of New Orleans' first two games. Against New York, he hit difficult leaners or one-handed floaters through crowds of defenders, sometimes while being fouled. Several of his baskets brought the crowd to its feet in full voice as he celebrated by flexing his biceps on each side of his head.

“It’s crazy seeing it in real time," Ingram said of some of Williamson's difficult touch shots around the rim. "Sometimes you wonder what shot he’s putting up and it drops straight in.”

But for the 6-foot-6 Williamson, who wasn't always the tallest player on the court from the time he started playing as a child, it's nothing new.

"When I was younger, I used to go to the park," Williamson began. “I was a lot smaller than everybody, so you've got to figure out touch around the basket and different angles, so I think just over time I developed it.”

RJ Barrett scored 18 for the Knicks, who appeared to run out of steam in the fourth quarter after winning in Atlanta one night earlier.

“We knew that would be a challenge coming off a back-to-back,” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “We were a step behind, a step slow.”

The Knicks were as close as six points late in the third quarter when former Pelican Josh Hart's 3-pointer capped an 8-0 run.

But Jonas Valanciunas' first eight points of the game early in the fourth quarter sparked a 10-1 run that put the Pelicans up 85-69. New Orleans maintained a comfortable lead from there.

CJ McCollum scored 12 points and Herb Jones added 10 points to go with three blocked shots.

Jalen Brunson, who scored a team-high 31 for the Knicks on Friday night against the Hawks, missed his first six shots in New Orleans. He didn't make his first field goal until he rolled in an 11-foot fade as he was falling down early in the third quarter and finished with 14 points.

New Orleans-area native Mitchell Robinson grabbed 15 rebounds for New York. Julius Randle grabbed 12 rebounds and scored 10 points, but missed 11 of his 15 shots, including all five he put up from 3-point range. Hart grabbed 10 rebounds.

The Knicks shot 2 for 17 from deep in the first half, and all those long rebounds - and some sloppy play - helped the Pelicans run out to a 19-point lead.

“We got in a big hole early. Turnovers were a problem," said Thibodeau, whose team had 10 first-half turnovers and finished with 18. “We didn’t have a good rhythm and then when we turned it over, we were giving them good-rhythm shots and that hurt.”

New Orleans had 19 of its 25 fast-break points in the first half, when it also scored 30 of its 52 points in the paint.

The Pelicans also hit seven 3s in the opening half, with rookie Jordan Hawkins, the No. 14 draft pick out of Connecticut, hitting three of those to help New Orleans take a 55-37 halftime lead.


Knicks: Visit Cleveland on Tuesday night.

Pelicans: Host Golden State on Monday.



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