What a strange night filled with boredom. No, it’s not from watching “Blair Witch Project” scenes, but from tonight’s game. The Knicks came into Detroit with Carmelo Anthony out after tripping on his own feet in Cleveland (curse you, Quicken Loans Arena). This game was very mucky and sluggish. After the first quarter, I knew this game wasn’t going to go all that well, and the majority of it didn’t. The defensive presence was great in the beginning, but, per usual, the defensive intensity slowed down, and got sloppy throughout, hence Brandon Knight looking like Mike Dunleavy hitting open threes from everywhere on the floor while Iman Shumpert and Jason Kidd were attempting to run around screens. However, in the fourth quarter, the Knicks regained themselves, Raymond Felton and J.R Smith in particular, and shot their way back into the game, going on a 16-0 run at one point, out scoring the Pistons 22-12, en route to an 87-77 win. Notes: More
Well it was an interesting night, to say the least. After coming out in the first half totally flat, and quite frankly uninterested, the Knicks were able to rally back in the second half behind a great performance from Amar’e Stoudemire. A vintage STAT game, Stoudemire scored 22 points on 10/14 shooting en route to victory. Carmelo Anthony went down with an apparent knee injury in the second quarter with the Knicks trailing by 5000 points. Stoudemire picked up the slack and led the Knicks to the win, playing a season high 32 minutes. Despite allowing Cleveland, namely Mo Speights and Luke Walton, to dominate the first half, the Knicks trailed by just 12 at halftime. New York completely dominated the 3rd quarter, holding Cleveland to 13 points. In the 4th, the Knicks scored 32 points behind Stoudemire and some timely three point shooting by Jason Kidd and Steve Novak. Cleveland had a chance to tie the game down three with six seconds remaining, but Tyson Chandler was able to deflect Kyrie Irving’s game tying attempt. Overall, this game wasn’t pretty for the Knicks and was incredibly frustrating, although predictable. Coming off yesterday’s emotional loss to Miami, it was expected the Knicks would have a let down game tonight. That being said, I thought the team showed great resilience to overcome Melo’s injury and an early onslaught of Cavalier offense. Given that Cleveland was playing without Dion Waiters and Tyler Zeller, the game should not have been as close as it was, but I was encouraged to see how the Knicks were able to keep fighting back and eventually did what they had to do to win.
I’m all that encouraged by the Knicks performance today. Apart from the second quarter, the Knicks were not a good basketball team today. They couldn’t shoot a lick, something we’ve seen over the past 11 games now, and they couldn’t respond at all when Miami turned up the intensity after halftime. The second quarter was a ton of fun, but the other three quarters were tough to watch. There were some positives though. For the fourth time in 5th games, Carmelo Anthony attempted double digit free throws. Jason Kidd had maybe his best game of the season, possibly breaking out of a prolonged slump of terrible three point shooting. Sans the end of the first quarter, I thought Stoudemire was solid and the Knicks did well to get him some open dunks at the rim.
What does this loss mean? Not all that much. It confirmed what we all kind of thought. The first two Knicks-Heat games were not that indicative of how these two teams match up. Though the Knicks are built to beat Miami, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who thinks they actually can in the playoffs. This was a bad loss for New York. Leading by 14 at halftime, the Knicks had plenty of opportunities to close out the game, but instead lost the second half by 20 points.
It was an uninspiring win, but a win nonetheless. Up 12 at halftime, the Knicks, losers of four straight, were able to hold on at the end for a 99-93 win over the Sixers, who have now lost five straight games. The Knicks dominated the second quarter, but the two teams played evenly for the other three quarters. In the fourth, Jrue Holiday sunk a trio of three pointers to head a Philadelphia comeback. However, the Knicks were able to hold on, thanks to some big plays by JR Smith of all people. Smith buried three three pointers of his own in the final period, and grabbed a huge offensive rebound in the final minute that basically saved the game.
Side note: Raymond Felton hurt his foot during the game. In postgame interviews, he said he hurt his achilles, but should be fine.
The Knicks are in a really bad place right now. I’m not over-exaggerating to a bad loss, or even a few bad losses. After starting off the season an astounding 18-5, the Knicks are now 14-15 in their last 29 games. They’ve lost 4 straight games and the upcoming late season schedule is brutal. November seems like eons ago.
Coming off Wednesday’s abomination in Indiana, the Knicks had a rough night tonight in Toronto. I actually thought the energy was pretty good tonight, but the execution was not. Defensively, we saw the same deficiencies we have seen all year. For the most part, I thought the Knicks gave a strong effort on defense. However, the constant switching and un-necessary double teaming left them out to try on too many occasions tonight. Give Toronto credit, they did some nice things on offense and took advantage of the Knicks putting themselves at a disadvantage. No one play was more evident of this than Kyle Lowry’s game winning bucket with 28 seconds left. Toronto ran high pick and roll, the Knicks switched and Lowry hit a really tough shot over Chandler. That one play symbolized this game in a microcosm. You pulled your hair out when the Knicks switched, thought they might be okay when Chandler had good position on Lowry and cursed when Lowry hit the shot anyways.
When I heard the Knicks were returning back to the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indiana, another half-court grinding sloppier-than-a-food-fight game was imminent. Thus, the Knicks lost by 34 points in a foul/technical foul, free throw-happy game, hence Tyson Chandler going 11-11 from the charity stripe, filled with repulsiveness. Gagging, vomiting, the works, I did it all while watching this complete dog crap of a game. Where to start? The Knicks started out the game shooting 8-22, allowing 30 points to the Pacers in the first quarter. Then, the Pacers scored 44 points in the second quarter. Yes, probably, if not, the best defensive team in the NBA that doesn’t have their main scoring option in Danny Granger due to injury that is also a bottom three offensive team scored 74 total first half points. Only can that happen to the Knicks, I say, because hey, it’s the Knicks. Even with Carmelo Anthony in the fold as the main scoring option instead of J.R Smith as the viable scoring threat in the last matchup against the Pacers, that did jack shit. Depressing notes are seen below: More
Sans Carmelo Anthony and his 42 point performance, the Knicks were utterly hapless on both ends of the court this afternoon at Madison Square Garden. The Clippers shot 52% as New York was a complete mess defensively. Amar’e Stoudemire was pitiful on both ends of the floor and the rest of the Knicks followed suit. After a strong 3rd quarter, the Knicks were dominated in the 4th. Mike Woodson coached a poor game in terms of both scheme, personel and lineups. Though the game was close in score down the stretch, it never felt like the Knicks had a chance to win. They couldn’t get any stops down the stretch with Amar’e in the game instead of Tyson, Shumpert sitting on the bench and Felton guarding Chris Paul. All in all, today was a disastrous game as the Knicks continue their prolonged mid-season stretch of mediocrity. Here are my notes from the game:
In the second and final meeting against the Wolves, the Knicks won a game in which it was somewhat similar to the first meeting against the Wolves back in December, except, the Knicks had the lead for the majority of tonight’s game unlike not having the lead until the 4th quarter in the previous meeting. The Knicks played very well in the first half. Ball movement was very prevalent and they closed out the first half with a 52-45 lead, although, the Wolves capped off a 10-3 run to end the half. Then, the Wolves limited the Knicks to 18 points in the 3rd quarter, creating a momentum shift that shifted all the way into the 4th. But, thanks to guardian angel, Carmelo Anthony’s 12 fourth quarter points, the Knicks accelerated down the stretch along with a few very crucial defensive possessions to boot. Tyson Chandler made Marv Albert orgasm his famous “REJECTION” catch phrase somewhere after he rejected Ricky Rubio to drop the dagger through the Target Center. Tonight’s win was a little shaky, but s’all good. Wins rule. Here are some notes: More
For the second straight game, the Knicks beat up on a far lesser opponent at Madison Square Garden. Saturday night, it was the Kings. Tonight, the Pistons. Although New York slept through the second half, this game was never close. The Knicks led the entire game, getting off to a good start with a 28-13 first quarter win. The lead was 22 at halftime and the Knicks never looked back. Carmelo Anthony led the way with 27 efficient points on 17 shots. Tyson Chandler became the third Knick to record three 20 rebound games. Stoudemire was again strong off the bench and Felton played one of his best games of the season. All in all, the night was swell for our Knickerbockers.
Picture an ordinary day in school. You’re sitting in history class day dreaming about the beautiful sexy girl next to you. In the day dream, that beautiful sexy girl and the popular kid that has 5 bajillion friends are conversing. The popular kid is inquiring her about this massive party he’s having at his house because his parents just recently left for vacation for a week. Meanwhile, you’re listening in to the conversation and the kid approaches you and asks you about attending the party. “Hey kid, wanna come to this gigantic party I’m hosting tonight?” he says. You go along and you say “Yeah, sure. I’m down with that.” The popular kids’ parents went to Milwaukee because they have family up there and they’re avid skiers. Unfortunately, the host passes out at the party after having a little too much to drink. About 20 minutes later, the light bulb goes off above your head. You decide to request to the crappy D.J that’s been playing a two hour remix of some crappy house mix to play “Jam On It” by Newcleus. You had no idea you were a B-Boy under the tutelage of Turbo and Ozone from “Breakin’” and “Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo.” And thus, you ripped up the dance floor to shreds. Whether it was popping, locking, or just plain breakin’, you mesmerized the circle that was formed by fellow party attendants. You saved the party from being flushed down the toilet with the puke from some of the party attendants. That consummates tonight’s Knick win over the Bucks. However, the Knicksian trend of losing the first quarter is still in tact. I have no clue how many first quarters they’ve lost, but keep in mind, they’ve lost a cluster of them. The first quarter of this year is playing reverse roles with the third quarter from last year. The Bucks had the lead 53-47 at half, but the Knicks won the third quarter and dominated the Bucks in the fourth, holding them to 13 points. A double digit win on Friday night, in which the Knicks would usually lose because of that jackass, Robert Randolph, is absolutely peachy. Here are some notes and stuff: More