Nate Saves Lethargic Knicks • Latino Sports

Basketball

Nate Saves Lethargic Knicks

on

NEW YORK – It’s not exactly the dream week schedule (that turned out to be a nightmare week) the New York Knicks began last night.

That schedule saw them face the Lakers, Cavaliers and Celtics. We know the result: Three losses.

This week brings three other teams New York could beat. Well, at least they should win 2-of-3. The Indiana Pacers came into the Garden 10 games under.500. The Orlando Magic comes in Wednesday night with the 4th best record in the league. They close out the home stand Friday night against a Philadelphia team that started the week at .500 and is still in the playoff hunt.

New York failed to take advantage of their 30 point blow out win last Friday against Toronto. They played the 2nd of the home-and-home series in Toronto Sunday afternoon, only to lose by 11. With only 10 games left after Indiana, they could not afford to take advantage of their home court. After the first half, New York played like a group of lifeless, disinterested individuals. Then Nate Robinson sprung into action.

The first half of the game had all the feel of a pre-season exhibition game. Shots missed, shots blocked and turnovers of every variety.

Indiana was without two of their main players Mike Dunleavy, and Danny Granger while the Knicks were still trying to figure out how to get production from their new additions Larry Hughes and Chris Wilcox. Both teams stumbled their way to a 51-51 halftime. At one point, New York managed to miss 15 straight shots with Hughes contributing, missing his first 5 shots.

The third quarter saw Robinson come to life. By games end he would come off the bench to score 41 points. The most points scored by a Knick coming off the bench since Bob McAdoo scored 41 against the Hawks 31 years ago. But his biggest play came with the game on the line, tied at 119, with .26 seconds left.

With the Pacers trying to inbound the ball underneath their own basket, Troy Murphy tried to pass the ball to guard Jarrett Jack. Robinson steps in front for the interception and races down court for the go ahead lay-up.

Said Robinson of the play, “he (Murphy) overthrew him and I ran and got the ball.” Robinson would add two late free-throws to seal the win.

Al Harrington contributed 27 points with David Lee putting up another double-double (20 points and 13 rebounds). Jack, who last time beat the Knicks on a last second shot, did his best for Indiana, scoring 33 points, while forward Marquis Daniels finished with 28 in the loss.

Neither head coach Mike D'Antoni nor any of the players could pinpoint why they have played as lacksadasical to start the last two games. Said D'Antoni, “we did
not do a whole lot tonight. I’m disappointed. It’s a long season.”
Lee knows the team has to bring energy from the start every night. “We need to keep working,” he said. 

It may not be the same dream week teams the Knicks faced in the Lakers, Cavs and Celtics, but the outcome of the games between Indiana, Orlando and Philadelphia may
be more important.
One down, two to go.

About Bobby Ciafardini