Knicks @ Bulls – 3-2-14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

New York continued their losing ways in matinee games.

            New York got throttled by Chicago in a Sunday matinee game. These teams are complete polar opposites. While Chicago’s management tried to tank the season for a projected outstanding 2014 draft class, by trading their leading scorer Luol Deng, the Bulls didn’t sulk. The Bulls refused to give in, and continued to give maximum effort every night, and the results speak for themselves. Chicago is an impressive 20-8 after trading Deng early in January.

           New York on the other hand looks to have talent on paper, but the sums do not add up to the whole. New York does not play with effort, does not play with any passion or urgency. It was another case of that Sunday afternoon, as the Knicks allowed the Bulls to jump out to a 12-1 lead within two and half minutes of tip off. Joakim Noah was destroying New York on hand off screens, creating the breathing room needed for shooters to get a clean shot. Noah created three of these opportunities for his Bulls teammates during the quick outburst to start the game.

            After a quick timeout to try to stop the Bulls’ momentum, the Knicks missed, and Noah grabbed the rebound and went coast to coast for a layup. Not exactly what Mike Woodson drew up (if he draws up any plays in the huddle). Chicago hit the 20 points mark before it was even mid-way through the first quarter, and this is a team that is the worst offensive team in the league at 93.1 points per game. When it was all said and done, the Knicks would allow Chicago to score 37 points in the first quarter.  37 points is the most points scored by the Bulls in any individual quarter all season. Continue reading

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Reexamining the Playoff Picture

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Written by William Lee

Mike Woodson still believes that his squad the New York Knicks has a chance at the playoffs still, even after their humiliating back to back losses to the Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors. The Knicks were non-competitive in both these games, and what is most concerning is that New York are on a five game losing streak, and are 2-8 in their last ten games.

Early in February we looked into what would be a realistic finish to the rest of the Knicks’ schedule. Let’s now dive into and take a look into the standings, and the other team’s schedule to see if they might have a losing streak in the near future to even give New York fans any hope at all…to gain games in the standings and make the Playoffs. Or at the very least, not give a high draft pick to the Denver Nuggets, as New York is without their first round pick this year. The pick was a part of the blockbuster trade that brought over Carmelo Anthony to New York.

Currently New York is the 11th seed in the Eastern Conference, and are looking up at Detroit (10th seed) and Cleveland (9th seed). These teams aren’t even in the Playoffs! New York needs these two teams to fall off, as well the bubble of teams around the 6th to 8th seed in the bottom of the Playoffs to start losing. The bubble of teams at the end are Atlanta (8th seed), Charlotte (7th seed), Brooklyn (6th seed). Continue reading

Knicks vs. Warriors – 2-28-14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

Both the Golden State Warriors and the New York Knicks entered Friday night’s game with a bad taste in their mouth, suffering huge defeats in their previous game. Golden State lost to Chicago 103-83 Wednesday night, while New York got humiliated by the defending Champions Miami Heat 108-82 the night before.

New York would continue their humiliating play on Friday. The Warriors jumped on the Knicks early in the game, going on a 10-0 run early in the first quarter. The run gave Golden State a 15-6 lead with 7:30 remaining in the first quarter, the Warriors would continue their onslaught in the period, finishing the quarter with 38 points. By the end of the first quarter it was 38-27, with the Warriors shooting 56% from the field, converting on five three-pointers.

New York went on a 9-2 run early in the second quarter, to cut the deficit into single digits 48-39. In a blink of an eye, any hope the Knicks had of coming back disappeared with the Warriors going on a 25-13 run to end the second quarter. By the end of the first half the Warriors were ahead 73-52, the 73 points were the most points New York had given up in the first half. The Madison Square Garden crowd booed their home team off the court. Many more cascade of boos would continue to serenade the Knicks throughout the night, and deserving so. Continue reading

Knicks vs. Mavs – 2-24-14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

The New York Knicks late game rally falls short against the Dallas Mavericks. The Knicks fall victim to a Dirk Nowitzki buzzer beater, that rimmed in and out, and unfortunately for the Knicks… back in.

The buzzer beater gave Dallas a 110-108 victory, which held of an incredible comeback by New York. With timely three-point shooting and great defense the Knicks clawed themselves back into the game.  Even if it wasn’t timely, the Knicks insisted on shooting themselves back into the game with threes. In an incredible one minute sequence that showed New York stubbornness to shot the three, New York shot five three-point field goals, grabbing five offensive rebound, forcing up another three with every miss, until Carmelo Anthony  finally knocked down a three to cut the deficit to 100-103 with 2:43 remaining.

On the next Knicks’ possession Tim Hardaway Jr. would launch and misfire a three, he was 2/8 Monday night from downtown. Jose Calderon on the ensuing possession would knock down his fifth three-pointer of the game, giving him 20 points in the game, and it giving Dallas a 106-100 lead with a little under two minutes to play in the game. Anthony would launch and misfire a three on the ensuing Knicks’ possession. Brandan Wright then broke free for a layup, giving Dallas a 108-100 lead with 1:37 remaining in the game. Continue reading

Knicks @ Hawks – 2-22-14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

The New York Knicks came into Saturday night with a chance to gain a full game on the eight seed Atlanta Hawks. The task would be even more difficult than a typical back to back game, because the Knicks played extended minutes against the Orlando Magic the night before, with the game going into double overtime. Five players played over 40 minutes Friday night, with Carmelo Anthony going over the 50 minute mark.

Even though Anthony played extended minutes he was still able to have an effective shooting night, scoring 35 points, including four threes. Yet again though it would be another wasted well-played game from Carmelo Anthony as the Knicks fall to the Hawks 107-98. It was also a wasted night for Tyson Chandler who was a man possessed on the glass, collecting 23 rebounds. As great as this performance was, it should be noted that Atlanta is the fourth worst rebounding team in the league with 40.7 per game.

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Knicks @ Magic – 2-21-14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

New York falls 4.5 games behind the eighth seeded Atlanta Hawks Friday night in the Eastern Conference Standings.

The Knicks lost to the third worst team in the league, the Orlando Magic 129-121 in double overtime. Victor Oladipo had a magical night, he was one rebound shy of collecting his second triple double in his rookie campaign, collecting 30 points 9 rebounds and 14 assists. He was the driving force behind the Magic’s victory, getting two and-one finishes under two minute mark in the second overtime. Oladipo was able to get into the lane all night with his dribble penetration, which led him to finishing around the rim, or pass the ball out to a wide open teammate.

New York yet again…wasted another spectacular night by Carmelo Anthony, who finished the game with 44 points 11 rebounds and 4 assists. Anthony at one point made nine field goals in a row, including a three-point shot where he made a spin move to elude Tobias Harris and stepped back. Anthony battled Harris all night long, as much points as Anthony had, it was Harris who got the last laugh, when Harris pushed Anthony out of bounds with 22.2 seconds remaining in regulation. No push off foul was called, but the Magic would miss their opportunity to win the game in regulation after a timeout.

Both teams missed opportunities to win the game in regulation and the first overtime. The Magic missed plenty of layups around the rim, and the Knicks shots rimmed in and out on several occasions. One of the bigger missed opportunities for the Knicks was when Tyson Chandler broke free to do a reverse ally-opp dunk. Unfortunately Chandler turning around placed his head right under the rim, where it bounced off the top of his head, and right back out of the net. After a brief referee gathering, they called it an offensive goaltending interference. At that point the game was tied at 113 with 1:07 remaining in the first overtime. There were no more scores afterwards, so that dunk, if not for the unfortunate placement of his body, could have given New York the game winning field goal.

The game would go to a second overtime, as Nikola Vucevic missed another potential game winning layup, after he had already missed one in regulation. Vucevic though still had a great game scoring 14 points and collecting 15 rebounds before he fouled out in the second overtime. Continue reading

Knicks @ Pelicans – 1-19-14 – Game Recap

Written by William Lee

Wednesday night was February 19, 2014 eve of the NBA trade deadline.

The good news the New York Knicks won against the New Orleans Pelicans 98-91 behind a 42 point night from Carmelo Anthony. The bad news…Iman Shumpert, arguably the only tradable asset the Knicks have, and is willing to part with, reinjured his surgically repaired left knee. Shumpert needed the assistance of his teammates to help him off the floor, suffering a sprain left knee when he was making a move towards the rim.

Carmelo Anthony dominated the fourth quarter, something that has been an infrequent event this season. Anthony scored 13 straight points for the Knicks in the final period, isolating himself on almost all possessions, getting by his defender with his first step, and pulling up for a mid-range jumper. No matter who the Pelicans threw at Anthony as the defender, no one was able to consistently stop him. Anthony even got his shot off against the outstretched arms of Anthony Davis. Though at times Davis did get the best of Anthony, getting a block and a steal on Anthony when they were isolated one on one. Anthony Davis would finish the game with 14 points 10 rebounds 5 blocks and 2 steals, safe to say there will be many more All Star game appearances by this man.

Though the Knicks would not have won, if not for the performances of J.R. Smith and Tim Hardaway Jr., whom were the only other Knicks in double figure scoring. The rest of the starters combined for only 17 points, so their scoring off the both was paramount to New York picking up a win. Tim Hardaway Jr. almost single handed matched that with 16 points off the bench. J.R. Smith in particular was making everything he threw up, including a wild and one circus shot in the first half. Smith did most of his damage in the second quarter, scoring 12 of his 19 points in the period.

New York had as big much as a 13 point lead early in the fourth quarter, but the Knicks would go scoreless in a four minutes stretch, where they watched New Orleans go on an 11-0 run to get within one possession 83-81. The Pelicans would get no closer as Carmelo Anthony closed out the game for the Knicks.

Something curious to note is that Eric Gordon, who was just dominate through three quarters, literally doing anything he wanted against the Knicks pathetic defense, was held out of the fourth quarter until the four minute mark. How dominate was he? Through three quarters he scored 28 points, which included hitting three three-pointers, and got to the line, attempting eight free throws. By the time he came back into the game, he had cooled off, and was scoreless in the fourth. No one can tell me otherwise that New Orleans, who are 23-30 after the loss to New York, were not intentionally tanking, when you have hottest hand sitting on the bench for most of the fourth quarter. Gordon was so cold, he air balled the potential go ahead three with two minutes remaining in the game.