Knicks barely outlast Warriors in battle of NBA futility

SAN FRANCISCO — The Knicks are not the worst team in the NBA.

The squad’s with the NBA’s two worst records — the Knicks and Warriors — battled into overtime Wednesday. The least-sickly club turned out to be the Knicks, who survived by the skin of their teeth.

With Marcus Morris exploding for 36 points, the Knicks broke their 10-game losing streak and escaped the NBA cellar with a 124-122 OT victory against what’s left of Golden State.

In the Knicks’ first game at the Warriors’ new palace, Chase Center, Mike Miller moved to 1-2 as interim coach after his club built a 22-point first-half lead and blew all of it.

Morris rescued the Knicks as he has in almost all their wins and gave the honor of the league’s worst record to the Warriors (5-21), who have gone from dynasty to a disgrace in one season. The Knicks (5-20) played a poor second half after jumping to that 22-point lead late in the second quarter.

Golden State staged a fierce fourth-quarter rally to take a two-point lead, 91-89, with 8:30, left but the Knicks responded and tied it again at 103 with two minutes left before Morris scored four straight points. But even that didn’t seal it.

Morris finished 10 of 18 from the field — 5 of 9 from 3.

Rookie RJ Barrett broke out of his recent slump to score 22, adding 10 rebounds for a double-double, but missed a key free throw with 7.7 seconds left in regulation, keeping the lead at three points and costing the Knicks a regulation win.

Ex-Net D’Angelo Russell, who had led the comeback, took the inbounds pass and rattled home a 3-pointer from the right corner over center Mitchell Robinson with 3.9 seconds left to send the game to overtime tied at 112.

The Knicks scored nine of the first 11 points of overtime, starting with a Julius Randle 3.

Randle finished with 24 points and 13 rebounds and Elfrid Payton, who played a solid overtime, added 14 points, five assists and four rebounds. Russell finished with 32 points.

The Warriors missed their first five shots, fell behind 6-0 and shot 33.3 percent in the opening half. They are unrecognizable from the club that advanced to five straight NBA Finals — with Steve Kerr the prime example of a coach sometimes being only as good as his roster.

According to a person close to Kerr, he’s enjoying the change of pace.

“I think the point of this season, for us, is to develop our young players,’’ Kerr said. “We have a lot of interesting prospects and we are trying to teach them every day.’’

Morris was a beast in the first half pumping in 18 points on 5 of 7 shooting from the field. The Knicks committed just five first-half turnovers. They looked like a less-erratic team without point guard Dennis Smith Jr., but starter Frank Ntilikina and Payton had sloppy second halves. The two combined for eight turnovers.

Before the game, Miller demurred when asked if he has been given an assurance he’ll have the job for the remainder of the season.

“We really have just been approaching the games,’’ Miller said. “We’re in constant communication. They’ve been really supportive. It’s just been about getting to the next game. I’m fine with it. We talk before and after every game. We have a good dialogue going.”

According to ESPN, there have been discussions about looking at a permanent hire if Miller flounders drastically. However, according to a source, Miller is still favored to take this to the end of the season.

The brass likes Miller and considers him a much better tactician than former coach David Fizdale, who turned into more a motivator and manager of players’ psyches.

At no point during Fizdale’s season-and-a-quarter stint did he show the front office an acumen for making in-game adjustments, especially in the fourth quarter of close games.

According to a source, management was impressed by Miller in his debut game against Indiana on Saturday, a game the Knicks lost by one point. Miller stuck with Payton for the entire fourth quarter that night because he was going strong. Fizdale’s failure to have the instincts to go with the hot hand may have cost him victories.

With team president Mills on thin ice, as reported by The Post Saturday, it’s doubtful owner James Dolan has given him autonomy to sign a new coach to a long-term deal, even if a future candidate such as broadcaster Mark Jackson is a coaching free agent.

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