Sorry Kings, but us Knicks fans and apparently the team didn’ forget about that buzzer-beater you hit us with back in late December. With this game having Melo, Stat, and Felton in the lineup, it was no-contest from the middle of the first quarter as New York completely embarrassed Sacramento by 39 points at Madison Square Garden. Just how much of a beatdown was it, you ask?
THE SWITCH GOES OFF: Even with the Knicks being 3-0 going into last night with their five-game homestand, the glaring issue during the streak has been slow starts in the first quarter. This was one of the more horrid starts as several players missed dunks and the team overall shot just 1-13 (7%) in the first seven minutes. The Kings, lead by an aggressive DeMarcus Cousins, held a 18-6 lead, prompting Coach Woodson to sub in Amar’e Stoudemire and J.R. Smith. That would be the turning point as Stat got several dunks as a part of a 10-0 run that brought the Knicks within five, 15-20. Smith added back to back threes later to cap a 19-2 run to give the Knicks a 25-22 after one quarter. Then it got real ugly for the Kings.
THE COMPETITIVENESS ENDS IN THE SECOND: The Kings offense was ice-cold in the second quarter. They stayed on 22 points for most of the period while the Knicks delivered a barrage of threes courtesy of Steve Novak, who went 4-4 for 12 points. Prigioni’s pesky defense yielded several steals and Stoudemire continued to abuse whatever defender was thrown at him, including old nemesis Chuck Hayes. At one point, the Knicks were on a 40-4 run and outscored the Kings in the second 31-11.
There was no letdown in the third as the Knicks starters remained focused with JR Smith nailing multiple threes to ignite a 15-0 run and push the lead to 82-43. Smith really had it in his mind to humiliate the Kings; our fearless gunner even chucked a three from the Knicks center court logo, prompting Coach Woodson to give him a quick talking to.
The benches emptied in the fourth and even Kurt Thomas got in on the action with multiple jumpers and swishing a three-pointer. That prompted “Kurt Thomas” chants to end the ballgame.
JR, STAT AND TYSON SHOW: These three dominated the game. Smith finished with 25 points, 21 of them coming from downtown. Stoudemire was perfect from the field (10-10) and finished with 21 points, 6 rebounds and just one turnover. Tyson Chandler had his second consecutive 20 rebound game, the first Knick to achieve this feat since the first run of Marcus Camby.
18 THREE-POINTERS: The last time the Knicks dropped 18 threes was in December when New York annihilated the Heat by 20. They matched it last night, just missing the franchise record by one.
MELO’S STREAK ENDS: Carmelo Anthony shot just 4-12 for nine points, ending his streak of consecutive 20 point games at 31. I doubt he was that worried — after the second quarter he stopped trying to force his offense and seemed pleased to not have to worry about the offensive load.
The Knicks end their homestand on Monday against the Pistons. No reason for them not to go a perfect 5-0.