Knicks Play Poorly, Suffer Defeat at Hands of the Raptors
On Wednesday night, the New York Knicks played their last game before the 2013 NBA all-star break. It was clear from the tip that the Knicks were looking forward to their vacation.
The Knicks started off well, hitting their early shots and setting the pace. The first quarter ended with the Knicks leading 18-14. The second quarter was a back and forth battle. The Raptors started the quarter hot, but Steve Novak kept the game from getting away early hitting three big 3-pointers.
Carmelo Anthony struggled mightily throughout the game. Anthony shot only 5-24 from the field, and 1-4 from the line. Hopefully, this was just an atypical off night for the Knicks star. The all-star break should reignite Anthony, one of the NBA's top scorers. Anthony finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds for the game.
Carmelo also picked up a technical foul in the second. This was his 10th of the season and at 16 technicals he'll be suspended for a full game.
Anthony's technical set the stage for a chippy second half battle. Including Anthony's, there were 6 technical fouls handed out. Chandler and Felton received techs for the Knicks, while Kyle Lowry and Aaron Gray received technical fouls for the Raptors. Lowry was thrown out of the game in the third quarter after receiving his second technical.
The Raptors relied heavily on the three ball Wednesday night. The usually poor shooting squad hit nine 3-pointers, led by sixth man Alan Anderson. Anderson had 26 for the game, hitting on 6 of his 8 shots from downtown.
The Raptors may have exposed a Knicks defensive weakness. The Knicks are the oldest team in the league, and tired legs may be an issue coming down the stretch. Numerous times, the Knicks were slow to run out to shooters, allowing wide open shots from around the arc. Knicks fans can count on defensive minded coach, Mike Woodson, to get the Knicks defense back on track.
J.R. Smith was the leading scorer for the Knicks, adding 26 points from the bench. Smith has been playing consistently well all season, and is clearly in the running for sixth man of the year.
Considering the way the game played out, the final scoreboard did not tell the entire story. The Knicks were lucky to only lose by 4, as the Raptors were wildly inefficient themselves.
The Knicks next game will be next Wednesday night against the Indiana Pacers on the road. Hopefully, the Knicks will be able to get back to their winning ways after the break.