Post Game Recap
Final Score: 76ers: 93 Knicks: 99
For at least one more day the Knicks will hold onto the Atlantic Division lead after ending their four game losing streak tonight against the 76ers. It was not the cleanest game, but the Knicks held control of the game the whole time, not trailing after the first quarter. The Knicks took control of the game in the second quarter as their reserves led by Amar’e Stoudemire and J.R. Smith. The win puts the Knicks two games ahead of the Brooklyn Nets, who lost to the Memphis Grizzlies Sunday afternoon.
- The bench play for the Knicks tonight was outstanding. They were the driving force in the opening up of the big lead in the second quarter as Stoudemire and Smith took over the game. In the second quarter Stoudemire scored seven points, totaling 22 on the night on nine of 10 shooting from the field. Stoudemire also added five rebounds and two steals. Smith put in a very complete game as well, scoring 14 points, grabbing six rebounds, handing out two assists and getting one steal. Pablo Prigioni and Steve Novak put in good performances for the Knicks as well, as their bench was a big reason for the victory tonight. The bench should be a strength for the Knicks, especially once Kenyon Martin gets into game shape and Rasheed Wallace and Marcus Camby get healthy.
- The Knicks brought effort tonight on the defensive end, holding the 76ers to 42.4 percent on 36 of 85 shooting from the field. Even more impressive was their defense on the 76ers perimeter shooting, as they managed to make only four of their 13 three point attempts, good for 30.8 percent.
- Tyson Chandler did not have an eye-popping game by stat standards, scoring only five points and grabbing 12 rebounds in the game with three blocks; his biggest impact came when Carmelo Anthony got into an altercation with 76ers center Spencer Hawes. Anthony smacked Hawes in the back of the head and Hawes reacted by getting into Anthony’s face. Chandler gave a two-hand shove to Hawes to get him off Anthony. It was great to see Chandler stand up for his teammate as all-star players have teammates who protect and standup for them on the court. Chandler is one of many Knicks who will stand up for their star player, showing unity and that they have his back.
- Anthony did not shoot the ball well tonight, going six of 18 from the field, but he still managed to score 29 points. The reason for scoring so many points; Anthony took 18 free throws in the game, knocking down 16 of them. Anthony was aggressive going to the basket throughout the game, heeding the words of head coach Mike Woodson who said his players had been settling for jump shots too often.
- The Knicks were unable to get their shooting strokes tonight as they again struggled from the three-point line, knocking down only eight of their 33 attempts. The Knicks will need to get back on track from deep if they want to be successful as the three point shot is a big staple of their offense, evident from the high amount of attempts they had.
- The Knicks defense was better tonight than in games past but they had no answer for Jrue Holiday. The All-Star point guard dominated the Knicks once again like he had three previous times this season, scoring a game high 30 points on 12 of 24 shooting from the field including three of seven from the three point line. Holiday would also grab five rebounds and hand out five assists, as he once again was the lone bright spot for a 76ers team whose playoff hopes are becoming slimmer with every passing day.