Notes From the Knicks 100-97 Victory Over Brooklyn

Multiple times tonight, I jumped out of my seat in celebration of something cool happening. One time, I almost fell. I banged all sorts of three point signs against the side of my head. I let out multiple screams of “MELOOOO” that probably had my roommates thinking “the hell is wrong with this guy?” This game was not a great one for the Knicks. For the first 12 minutes of this basketball game, the Knicks collectively dropped a giant turd. Brooklyn won the first quarter 30-16 and it really wasn’t that close. Ronnie Brewer was sandblasting the front of the rim with threes while Felton and Chandler missed layup after layup after layup. Swiss cheese defense would’ve been an upgrade over the whatever the hell the Knicks were doing. Anyways, quick game synopsis forthcoming. Carmelo Anthony had maybe his greatest game as a New York Knick. In his 44 minutes played, Anthony was unstoppable scoring 45 points on 15/24 shooting. He hit 5 of his 7 three point attempts and hit 10 of his 11 free throws. For the second straight game against Brooklyn and the third straight game overall, Raymond Felton struggled mightily. The Bulldog/Duck/avid user of solid deodorant was just 3/12 shooting from the floor. Felton had my skin boiling the entire game and I was screaming at Mike Woodson through my TV “PUT PRIGIONI IN, DAMMIT!” Unlike the first Brooklyn meeting where Felton basically shot the game away in the 4th quarter, the Knicks were able to overcome the crappy performance of their point guard. So after digging themselves a fourteen point first quarter deficit, the Knicks had a solid second quarter. Anthony was hitting threes, JR Smith was being not horrible and the Knicks found themselves down just four points at the half. The third quarter was not a good one for the Knicks. They lost the quarter 26-25, despite Deron Williams’ leaving the game at the 5:31 mark. Andray Blatche killed them late in the third and the Knicks found themselves down five to start the 4th. In the final period, Carmelo Anthony and Jason Kidd stole the show. Melo continued his dominance, scoring 14 of the Knicks 26 fourth quarter points. With 1:10 to go, Joe Johnson tied the game at 97. With about 50 seconds left, JR Smith missed a three, but Chandler was able to tip out the rebound to Anthony. The Knicks did a good job of moving the ball on their final offensive possession that resulted in Jason Kidd hitting an open three with 24 seconds left. A savvy vet, Kidd stuck his leg out and drew a foul on the shot, but then missed the ensuing free throw. Brooklyn ran a garbage final possession that resulted in a Crash Wallace three that clanked off the rim. Brooklyn got the offensive rebound and kicked it to a wide open Deron Williams for three, but he missed and the Knicks won the game.

Here are my notes from the game: Continue reading

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Knicks-Nets: What to Watch For

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The Knicks travel back to the Barclays Center tonight to take on the Nets in the second meeting of the NBA’s newest rivalry. The Nets won the first chapter of this saga in overtime, 96-89, back on Nov. 25 in Brooklyn where the Knicks were without Jason Kidd, but both teams have gone in different directions since that game. The Knickerbockers have won six of seven since the road loss to the Nets, while the Nets have dropped four straight games including three in a row at home. Tonight marks the end of a four-game home stand for the Nets, and the Knicks would love nothing more than to give them an 0-4 home trip at the Barclays.

Brook Lopez has missed the last five games for the Nets and  will miss tonight’s game as well. Lopez killed the Knicks in the first meeting with 22 points, 11 rebounds and five blocks. On the flip side, Tyson Chandler has been on a tear recently, averaging 15 points, 10 rebounds and shooting over 75% from the field in his last 10 contests. He torched the Nets for 28 and 10 in the last meeting, and with no Lopez tonight, Chandler could be due for a huge game. He and Felton have developed a great chemistry and the high pick and roll, and even Felton’s drives to the basket that go for misses turn into assists for Chandler.

The Knicks and Nets currently sit atop the Atlantic Division standings, with the Knicks holding a 3 ½ game lead and the top seed in the Eastern Conference. It is the latest the Knicks have been first in the conference since the 1994 season when they went to the Finals. With the rest of the division struggling a bit it’s a great chance for the Knicks to really put a stranglehold on it. I still think the Knicks and Nets are the two best teams in the division, and tonight is a statement game for both teams.

The impact of this game goes deeper than just the standings, for obvious reasons. All clichés aside, the Nets want to be the dominant team in New York, and are still the only Eastern Conference team to beat the Knicks. A rivalry has started and the Knicks need to claim their first victory in the battle of New York.

Heres what to watch for: Continue reading