The backup forward for the Knicks checked into an exhibition game on Saturday night after missing the first preseason game due to being “nicked up,” and within 25 seconds dived into the seats for a loose ball.
Hart fell to the ground on his butt after tripping over the front row.
The fact that he kept playing and didn’t seem hurt made the scene a sweet reminder of Hart’s heart rather than a depressing one.
The 28-year-old then sat out the entire second half of the Timberwolves’ 121-112 defeat at the Garden.
He’s taking it easy after he played for Team USA over the summer.
“I’m getting old, that’s all it is. Just old,” Hart said about the reason for missing the opening preseason game. “The amount of games played. Nothing of note.”
Hart’s eight-minute preseason debut included three points and one flip over a chair.
RJ Barrett, who ended with a game-high 23 points in only 26 minutes on 6-for-15 shooting, was one of his teammates that took up the slack.
The game’s high point came from Mitchell Robinson, who blocked Karl-Anthony Towns’ layup attempt with a chase-down block.
Again playing for lengthy stretches, Evan Fournier contributed 15 points on 6-for-10 shooting.
However, the fourth quarter beating of the Knicks reserves, including Fournier, determined the outcome and dropped the home team’s preseason record to 1-1.
Jalen Brunson increased his playing time somewhat, going from six minutes on Wednesday to 14 on Saturday, but he still sat out the second half. In 23 minutes, Julius Randle contributed seven points.
Overall, the effort lacked the polish of the preseason opener versus Boston.
That was anticipated given that the Celtics rested their entire starting lineup while the Timberwolves played their “A” team, which included Karl-Anthony Towns (17 points in 27 minutes), Anthony Edwards (17 points in 27 minutes), and Rudy Gobert (nine rebounds in 22 minutes).