Post Game Recap
Final Score: Rockets: 109 Knicks: 96
Much like last season when Carmelo Anthony was out, Jeremy Lin lit up the Garden with his play; that happened again Monday, just this time Lin was on the opposite team as the Rockets blew out the Knicks 109-96. It was the Knicks first home loss of the season, as the Rockets snapped a seven game losing streak on the road.
Chris Copeland got the start in place of Carmelo Anthony, his second straight one. Tonight, he led the Knicks in scoring, going for a career high 29 points. He shot 11 of 19 from the field, going three of five from three point range. He also knocked down all four free throws, adding five rebounds, two steals and one block. Copeland was the only consistent scoring option for the Knicks tonight, who struggled mightily getting into a flow on offense throughout the night.
J.R. Smith did everything he could off the bench for the Knicks, scoring 17 points and grabbing three rebounds. Smith was carrying the offensive load for the Knicks in the first half, but got into foul trouble and had to be taken out of the game. Once Smith had to leave the game, the Knicks offense faltered and the deficit became too much to overcome.
The Knicks turned the ball over to frequently tonight to have any chance at winning. They were unable to get into a rhythm because of the constant turnovers.
The free throw shooting was abysmal again for the Knicks tonight, as they went nine of 16 from the foul line, good for 56.3 percent. They were not only inefficient when they got there, but they did not get to the line enough, as the Rockets were the aggressors in the game tonight and the Knicks relied too much on their jump shooting.
The Knicks were unable to control tempo tonight either, as the Rockets came in and set the pace right from the start. The Knicks like a half court game, but the Rockets like to get into a fast paced game in the open court; tonight the Rockets succeeded. They outscored the Knicks 25-10 in fast break points and outscored the Knicks in the paint 52-46.
Perimeter defense was nowhere to be found for the Knicks tonight as well, as Lin and James Harden dominated the Knicks. Lin went nine of 15, going for 22 points including eight assists, four rebounds and two steals. Harden led the Rockets in scoring, going for 28 on nine of 18 shooting, adding 10 rebounds, three assists and two steals.