Post Game Recap
Final Score: Knicks: 100 Nets: 97
The Knicks were able to overcome an early deficit in which they dug themselves into a double-digit hole, falling down by 17 in the first half, to come back and beat the Nets 100-97 at the Barclay’s Center Tuesday night. It was a gritty effort by the Knicks, who seemed to be unprepared and uninterested in the start of the game, but got it going in the second quarter. With the win, the Knicks are winners in seven of their last eight games.
Carmelo Anthony was on fire tonight, scoring a season high 45 points. What is best about his performance is how efficient it was, as he needed only 24 shots to score 45 points, going 15-24 from the field, 5-7 from the three point line, and 10-11 from the foul line. Anthony was unstoppable and scored on anyone the Nets threw at him. He did not want to lose this game, feeling that they beat themselves in their first visit to Brooklyn. Anthony exploded in the fourth quarter, scoring 15 points and scoring timely baskets at will.
Jason Kidd again showed how important he is to this team, knocking down six three pointers, including the game winning shot. Kidd chipped in six rebounds and six assists, adding a steal on defense. It seemed every shot that Kidd took was a timely one, ending Nets runs and starting a Knicks one.
J.R. Smith gave a spirited, hard fought game for the Knicks tonight. Battling a back injury, Smith refused to back down and leave the game, putting on his best performance in his last five games, in which he shot 27 percent in. Smith shot seven of 15 from the field tonight, providing the scoring punch off the bench the Knicks have been missing since he started struggling. Smith showed a lot of heart tonight fighting through the injury, visibly in pain for large parts of the game.
Rasheed Wallace gave a much needed spark to the team off the bench as well, coming in early as Tyson Chandler got into foul trouble in the early going. Wallace was effective in his return from a one game absence from a foot injury, finishing with eight points and five rebounds in 14 minutes, adding two blocks and one steal. Without Wallace, the game could have gotten more out of hand from the start, as Wallace really held down the fort in the middle with Chandler struggling.
Chandler has been playing great basketball of late, but just did not have it Tuesday night. He did not have the same energy tonight and got into foul trouble early on, taking him out of the game almost as quick as it began. Chandler would pick up his fourth foul with 3:06 left in the third quarter, unable to get into a rhythm in the game. Chandler was unable to contain Andray Blatche, who scored 12 points in the first quarter alone and finished with 23 in the game to lead the Nets. Chandler finished with a disappointing five points and seven rebounds, as this was a game he should have dominated with Brook Lopez out with injury.
Raymond Felton struggled again tonight in all aspects of the game. He shot poorly from the field, going three of 12. He did have seven assists, but matched that total in turnovers and committed five fouls in the game. Felton did not seem to be on his game tonight, as he was letting the Nets and referees get into his head and affect his play.
Outside of Wallace and Smith, the Knicks got nothing from their bench. Pablo Prigioni, Steve Novak and James White combined to score no points, attempting only two shots. Of those three, Prigioni and White offer the most outside of scoring as they bring veteran presence and defense. The surprise of the group is Novak; if he isn’t knocking down three pointers he really has no business being on the court.