Knicks Home Win Streak Hits 5 • Latino Sports


Knicks Home Win Streak Hits 5


New York, NY – There was a time when teams coming to Madison Square Garden resigned themselves to the fact that they would leave with a loss. That was a long time ago. In fact, until recently, teams looked forward to playing at the World’s Most Famous Arena feeling confident they would increase their win total. Things have changed, evident by the recent home winning streak. Facing the Atlanta Hawks Wednesday night, the New York Knicks had won 6 of their last 9 games; 5 of those 6 games played on their hardwood and winning the last 4 in a row. They were hoping the good fortune would continue against a Hawks team they lost to back on December 5th by 3 points.

The end of the first quarter was an extension of that game when neither quarter was decided by more than 1 point. David Lee continued his All-Star selection push scoring 10 points but New York trailed 26-25. As they have done during the home winning streak, the Knicks bench made an immediate impact. Forward Danilo Gallinari quickly hit two 3 pointers giving the Knicks a 38-33 lead. Atlanta’s head coach Mike Woodson, after calling a time out with 7:00 left, re-inserted guards Mike Bibby and Joe Smith. They would lead their team on a 13-0 run which included a Bibby steal and lay-up, followed by a Marvin Williams 3pointer extending the lead to 46-38. David Lee’s lay-up stopped the streak but Atlanta would go on to outscore the Knicks 18-9 to finish the half at 55-47. “We just didn’t finish plays off,” said Knicks coach Mike D’ Antoni of the first half. “I thought we played their rhythm and they kind of set the tone”.



New York would change that tone in the third on the strength of their own guard tandem of Chris Duhon and Quentin Richardson. Both scored 11 points on a combined 7 of 12 shooting and a perfect 6 of 6 from the free throw line. They erased an 8 point Hawks lead outscoring them 16-9 in the last 6:08 to take a 82-74 lead into the fourth quarter. Atlanta would then watch as Nate Robinson, who has been “white hot” lately, w
ent on an offensive tear. Robinson had only scored 4 points while New York was holding on to a 5 point lead. He would score 20 points in the last 9:19 with an assortment of lay-ups, a bank shot and an alley-oop from Chris Duhon that rocked the 18,180 fans in attendance. Said D ‘Antoni, “He (Robinson) has that energy that not many people have. He’s an open shot every time we have the ball.”

The team has been riding the electric wave that has been providing during the home winning streak. As exciting as he can be, he can be as equally frustrating getting technical foul at the wrong time. David Lee has seen both sides. “He had some games when he struggled with his shots and it’s good to have him back hitting shots.” During the struggles Robinson experienced, he never lost faith. In fact, that was the only thing that kept him going. “Every day I go to chapel,” he said after. “The Pastor Love always just tells me to believe in the lord, he’ll take care of everything. I just go out and just play my game and keep it in God’s hands.”

The Knicks visit Indiana Saturday night before playing what Robinson calls “Hell Week” in which they host the Lakers (Kobe Bryant), Cleveland (Le Bron James) and Boston (Kevin Garnett). It might be easy for the team to overlook the Pacers. Robinson doesn’t think so. “Indiana is a team we have to beat; they came here and beat us and we have not forgot about it. We’re looking forward to going to their home town and beating them.”

The New York Knicks still may not scare many teams as coming into the Garden as they once did. But word is spreading fast among the teams in the league. Going to the Garden is not an automatic win anymore.   



About William Gerena-Rochet

William Gerena Rochet, is the former Latino Sports baseball editor. He is a retired NYC teacher who divides his time living between New York City and San Juan, Puerto Rico. He started writing for Latino Sports during the inaugural World Baseball Classic when a series was played in Puerto Rico in 2006. On of his favorite moments was covering the 2006 MLB All-Star Game in Pittsburgh. During his time with Latino Sports, he covered several divisional and League championship series games and the 2009 World Series. He also covered the last game at the old Yankee stadium and the first game of the current one. In closing, William has covered multiples Latino Sports MVP Awards ceremonies and Spanish Language Press Conferences including the Jorge Posada retirement one. Now a contributor, Willie will occasionally cover the Yankees.