Written by William Lee
Top five highest pace Phoenix Suns spearheaded by their two headed point guard monster that is Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe scorched the Knicks early. The duo combined to score a dozen of the first 15 points, in an early 15-4 run capped off by a Bledsoe steal and dunk that brought down boos from the matinee Madison Square Garden crowd. Bledsoe finished the game with a double-double with 25 points and 10 rebounds.
From this point on New York mounted a monster comeback, going on a 23-10 run bridging the gap from mid first quarter to early second to take the lead 27-25. Jose Calderon kept New York in the game, bailing the Knicks out of poor possessions going nowhere by beating the shot clock a couple of times. Calderon scored eight of his 21 points in the first quarter, doing most of his damage from beyond the arc, making five three-pointers in the game. It was the play of the bench that propelled New York into the lead with yet another lackluster start by the starters. Jason Smith did most of the hard lifting, coming off the bench to score seven points in five minutes of play in the first quarter.
After the slow start from the Knicks’ starters, Carmelo Anthony and Tim Hardaway Jr. redeemed themselves in the second quarter, scoring a combined 15 points in the period. Anthony collected his only his second double-double of the season with 25 points and 11 rebounds. The teams went back and forth, exchanging leads five times, and being tied up eight times.