Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Knicks Sweep Home-and-Home in Blowout

Monday, November 6th, 2012
Post Game Recap
Final Score: New York Knicks: 110 Philadelphia 76ers: 88
Knicks Sweep Home-and-Home in Blowout

Another night, another win for the Knicks as they blew out the 76ers 110-88 in the second game of the home-and-home series between the teams.  The blowouts the Knicks handed the 76ers made them only the fourth team since the 2000-2001 season defeat the same team on back-to-back nights by 16+ points each time. 

In the process, the Knicks moved to 3-0 for the first time since 1999-2000 season and re-wrote the record book in the process.  It was the first time in franchise history that the Knicks started the season 3-0 by winning all of their games by double digits.  They also set NBA records but winning their first three games of the season by 15+ points each and also making the most three pointers in three games to start a season with 43, knocking down another 13 Monday night. 

The Knicks got off to a slow start, but quickly put it behind them and went on to dismantle Doug Collins’ squad.  It was a balanced effort from the Knicks, as seven players scored in double figures, led by 21 from Carmelo Anthony.  Anthony paired with Raymond Felton to bring the Knicks out of the hole they fell into at the start, going down 9-0 before scoring.

Anthony and Felton combined for 25 points in the first half, with Anthony doing most of his damage inside, as he struggled from behind the arc going one for six.  Felton, obviously motivated in his second stint with the Knicks, scored 16 points for the game and added eight assists with only two turnovers.  With Anthony on the court, the Knicks outscored the 76ers by 20 and Felton finished with a plus 12.

Felton was part of the three-pronged attack the Knicks use at point guard along with Jason Kidd and Pablo Prigioni.  Combined, the three combined for 16 assists and only four turnovers.  They are getting their teammates in position for easy baskets and running the offense fluidly; the ball is stopping less and ball movement has been outstanding thus far. 

J.R. Smith continued his spirited play to start the season, lighting up the 76ers for the second consecutive game.  Smith finished the game with 17 points, seven rebounds and five assists.  He also had a thunderous dunk off a pass from Prigioni that no one was stopping.

Smith has been everything the Knicks wanted and more off the bench, providing the scoring punch they desperately need but also looking like a much more mature player than who ended last season.  If Smith keeps playing like this, the Knicks are that much more dangerous. 

Tyson Chandler also had a strong game even though he was hampered by flu-like symptoms that turned out to be strep throat.  Chandler played 29 minutes, scoring 14 points and grabbing six boards.  He also added a block to his stat sheet and was the usual presence in the paint for the Knicks.

The defense for the Knicks was once again stellar, as the 76ers shot only 33.7 percent for the game.  Jrue Holiday had another good game for the 76ers, scoring 17 points and handing out eight assists but was forced into four turnovers.  Evan Turner was once again shutdown by Ronnie Brewer, as Turner scored only 22 points in the two games combined.

Rasheed Wallace stepped out of his victory cigar role he held the first two games a little bit, getting extended minutes in his hometown of Philadelphia.  Wallace entered halfway through the third quarter, to the excitement of the crowd, and played 14 minutes total.  Wallace played well in his time on the court, knocking down two three pointers, the second of which was a buzzer beater that sent the Knicks bench and crowd into a frenzy.  Wallace finished with 10 points on four of nine shooting with three rebounds and two blocks.

The Knicks will have three days off before welcoming the Dallas Mavericks to Madison Square Garden Friday night.  The Knicks will most likely get Tuesday off and get back to practice Wednesday and Thursday in preparation for the Mavericks.  The Mavericks will be without Dirk Nowitzki, but they are still not a team to take lightly with Darren Collison playing the best basketball of his career and O.J. Mayo leading the NBA in three-pointers made.  Marcus Camby is also tentatively scheduled to make his season debut in his second run with the Knicks.

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