Knicks West Coast Gets Off to Disastrous Start in Golden State

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By, Kenneth Teape – Knickswag Contributor

Post Game Recap

Final Score:  Knicks: 63  Warriors: 92

The West coast trip could not have started any worse for the Knicks, who got hammered right from the start in Golden State against the Warriors.  There was no energy from the Knicks, who looked like hi-res-7137234_crop_650x440they were still on the plane from New York and had no idea that a game was being played.  The Knicks only lead of the game was 1-0 when Carmelo Anthony made a free throw and from there the Warriors dominated.  The Knicks struggled to get into any type of flow as the Warriors just ran the Knicks out of the Oracle Arena.

-Positives

Chris Copeland did not look like he was going to make an appearance in the game tonight, outside of garbage time, before J.R. Smith got ejected and he got his shot.  Copeland came off the bench and did what he does best, score the basketball.  Copeland scored 15 points after replacing Smith, going five of 11 from the field, three of five from deep and knocking down both his free throws.  Copeland needs to see more playing time earlier in the game so the Knicks don’t fall so far behind and stay competitive Warriors-Vs-Knicksthroughout the game.

Kenyon Martin’s stats do not pop out at you, but he was the only Knick that had a positive +/- at +6 on the night.  Martin brought intensity to the defensive end and was a presence on the boards grabbing four rebounds on the night.  When Martin is in the game, especially with Tyson Chandler, the Knicks defense turns up immensely.

It is hard to tell if you watched the game, but the defense was not actually bad for the Knicks tonight.  If they had played near what they are capable of on the offensive side of the ball they would have pulled out a victory in Golden State.  The Knicks held the Warriors to 41 percent shooting from the night and 93 points, seven points under their season average of 100.6 points per game.

-Negatives

The defense wasn’t awful for the Knicks as a whole, but their perimeter defense was below par.  The knicks-warriors-320-031113Warriors made a killing from the perimeter, knocking down 55 percent of their three point attempts, led by six from Stephen Curry and four from Klay Thompson.  You would think after what happened in the Garden a little less than two weeks ago the Knicks would have focused on slowing down Curry, but it did not really happen.

The Knicks offense could not have been worse against the Warriors, as they set season lows for points scored, 63, and shooting percentage, 27.1 percent.  It was not any better from the three point line, as they shot 18.5 percent from beyond the arc; third worst percentage for them on the season.  That percentage would have been even worse if not for Copeland coming in and knocking a few down in his minutes on the court.

There are really no positive words to describe Carmelo Anthony’s play against the Warriors.  He was abused on defense by whoever he was guarding and was easily stopped on the offensive end as he had no lift because of his knee issue.  Clyde Frazier pointed it out on numerous occasions that Anthony was not going vertical when he would go up for a shot, instead he would be horizontal trying to avoid opposing players.  It was a rough night for Anthony as he shot 4 of 15 from the field and just never looked comfortable, limping and grimacing for most of the game.

After a strong showing Saturday night against the Jazz, Steve Novak was nowhere to be found Monday 00370927-976079_catl_500night.  Novak went 0 for 6 from the field, missing open shots that he would normally knock down.  He did not look to have the same confidence against the Warriors as he had previously against the Jazz.  He was not the only Knick to struggle in the game shooting the ball, as Jason Kidd, Pablo Prigioni, J.R. Smith, and Anthony all missed multiple three pointers without knocking one down as well.

Speaking of Smith, he was ejected from the game after being called for a flagrant-2 foul.  He hit Warriors rookie Harrison Barnes pretty hard midway through the third quarter and was originally given a flagrant-1; after seeing the replay referee Joey Crawford changed the call and Smith was tossed. Smith was probably the luckiest Knick on the night as he did not have to participate in the massacre any longer.

The free throw shooting was an embarrassment for the Knicks; right in line with the rest of the night shooting wise.  On the night they went 18 of 28 from the charity stripe, good for an abysmal 64.3 percent.  Tonight was a rough night from everyone on the court and a game the Knicks should just put behind them, forget about and move ahead to the next one.

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