Written by William Lee
Carmelo Anthony had to call a timeout to get himself out of the game with 1:45 remaining in the first half. It would later be announced that Anthony was dealing with back spasms. Up until that point Anthony was having himself a great game, in fact, it was his 14th point of the first half, where it looked like he was experiencing discomfort after making a jump shot with 2:05 remaining in the second quarter. Anthony tried to stay in the game…but could not bear the pain, raising his hand to the referee indicating that he needed to leave the game.
When Anthony exited the game, the Knicks were trailing 49-38, and it looked like it would to be all doom and gloom, but the Knicks would go on 7-0 run to end the first half in the final 51 seconds to cut the deficit to 51-46 entering halftime.
New York tied the game up at 69 a piece after three quarters, winning the period 23-18, largely due to Houston’s own sloppiness with the basketball. The Rockets turned the ball over seven times in the quarter, this helped ignite the Knicks offense, and gave them more opportunities to work with.
Pablo Prigioni went nuts hounding the basketball in the beginning of the fourth quarter, causing havoc all over the place for the Rockets. Prigioni’s defense helped ignited a 7-1 run, that gave New York a 78-72 with 8:51 remaining in the game.
From that point on, James Harden went to work on the Knicks… Harden had his finger prints on the final 19 points of the game for Houston. First dishing out three assist, finding Trevor Ariza for a three, and setting up Donatas Motiejunas for back to back layups to take a 79-78 lead midway through the fourth quarter. Then Harden would take it upon himself to do all the scoring, knocking down back to back threes to give Houston a 85-82 lead with 3:40 left in the game. From that point on Harden just held the ball and watched the clock click down, and danced his way to the free throw line, where he sealed the game. Hardens personal 19-8 run to end the game helped rallied the Rockets past the Knicks 91-86 Monday night. Harden finished the game with 36 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assist, as well as three steals.