Watch the live stream of Amar’e Stoudemire’s NYC press conference on his NBA retirement signing as a New York Knick and rumored plan to play for Israel as a member of the Hapoel Jerusalem.
Watch the live stream of Amar’e Stoudemire’s NYC press conference on his NBA retirement signing as a New York Knick and rumored plan to play for Israel as a member of the Hapoel Jerusalem.
After 24 hours of speculation, the New York Knicks confirmed the waiver of veteran forward Amar’e Stoudemire this afternoon.
Stoudemire, who signed as a star free agent in 2010 for $100 million, was integral in helping the Knicks return to the playoffs after seven years of futility. Carmelo Anthony came mid-season and many expected the pair to be a dominant 1-2 punch in the coming years. Unfortunately, debilitating and recurring injuries to both knees kept Stoudemire sidelined for prolonged stretches.
Those injuries would force him to accept minute restrictions and a bench role. After averaging 25 points his first year in New York, Stoudemire’s production has fallen to 12 points the last two seasons.
“I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to contribute positively on the court and in the community,” Stoudemire said in a prepared statement. “Although I leave the Knicks with a heavy heart, I wish the organization the best of luck. Once a Knick always a Knick,”
Stoudemire also took to his Instagram to send out a farewell “poem” to fans.
NY NY what a beautiful city
A place where you can hang out with Anna, JayZ & Diddy
Its a place absent of excuses and patience
If your smart, you can meet leaders of every nation
NY NY big city of dreams
Everything in NY isnt always what it seems
In the land where the jungle is concrete
The money flows Dow Jones and Wall Street
Home of #STATcity and the #Knickstape Orginator,
Shalom to all my fans, Salute to all my haters.
Peace and Love
Amar’e Carsares Stoudemire Sr.
At press time, Stoudemire is seeking to join a championship contender with teams such as the San Antonio Spurs and Dallas Mavericks showing interest.
This was the best move for all involved. With the team going nowhere this season and Amar’e’s health disqualifying him from getting another significant contract here, parting ways ASAP made perfect sense. This opens up the roster for the Knicks to call up one of their D-League prospects to get valuable NBA game experience, such as Thanasis Antetokounmpo.
Signing Stoudemire to $100 million was a huge gamble. Ultimately, it was disappointment due to Stat’s body not being able to hold up as a first option, and the fiscal constraints that contract put on acquiring new talent.
If you could go back in time, would you still sign Stat?
After two bad blowouts on this West Coast trip to the Lakers and Suns, the Knicks gave themselves a playoff gut check last night against the Warriors in pulling out a critical road game to pull within a game of Atlanta for the last playoff spot. Like most games this season, the Knicks played good basketball in spurts and had an atrocious fourth quarter that nearly lead to the game being stolen in the final minutes. Luckily, New York got defense from a surprising source to keep their post-season hopes alive.
CURRY ON FIRE, BUT NOT WHEN IT MATTERED MOST: Steph Curry lit the Knicks up, going for 32 points (10/21, 6/12 from downtown). Raymond Felton was once again the victim, getting killed on screens and not being able to close out. Pablo Prigioni got ran around in circles during the fourth and couldn’t keep up with the roaming sharp-shooter, allowing for an open three that tied the game at 81 with 2:42 remaining.
The game hung in the balance with both teams exchanging bad fouls and clutch shots that lead to the Knicks clinging to a 87-84 lead after two free throws from Carmelo Anthony. Curry got the ball with five seconds left and went up for a three. Felton closed out well on him, forcing Curry into a bad pass which Shannon Brown picked off for a clear path foul that iced the game. The play was reminiscent of last year at the Garden when Felton forced a late turnover on Curry to spoil Steph’s 54-point effort.
Despite the overall futility of Felton game numbers (2 points, 4 assists), Felton’s game-ending play might be the one that saves our playoff hopes.
MELO THE INEFFICIENT: Whether it was due to Andre Iguodala’s defense or mentally not being engaged, Melo had a struggle-filled night from the field. Foul trouble limited him to 10 minutes in the first half. In the second, he chucked numerous long jumpers completely out of the offensive flow. At one point in the fourth, he was 0/5.
Starting at the 4-minute mark, our leader settled down and made several key plays. The first one was dishing to Tim Hardway Jr. for a three-pointer that made it 81-75. At the 1:23 mark, he nailed a tough mid-range jumper that pushed the Knicks ahead 85-81. And at the 45 second mark, he drew a shooting foul on Iguodala and swished two free throws to make it 87-84. It wasn’t pretty, as New York only managed 15 points in the fourth, but Melo was another catalyst that willed this win through.
JR n STAT: With Melo sitting most of the first half, JR Smith carried the load with a deadly and varied offense. Whether driving to the lane for circus shots or bombing threes, our reigning Sixth Man of the Year couldn’t be stopped. His hot hand sparked a 15-0 run to enter halftime with a 56-44 lead.
While Stoudemire had a seesaw game on the offensive front (5/14, 15 points), but he took full advantage of David Lee’s absence. Stat grabbed 13 rebounds with six of them coming on the offensive glass. He was key in helping the Knicks not blow their lead in the third, and provided strong minutes in the fourth. He was briefly sat for a few minutes in favor of Tyson Chandler, but Coach Woodson quickly realized his error and let Stat close out the game.
DEFENSE AND LUCK: The Knicks had some strong defensive moments in the first half. Their close-outs and help defense limited the Warriors to 35% shooting overall. What’s a little deceiving is that the Warriors had plenty of open shot opportunities in the fourth (particularly Klay Thompson), but just couldn’t covert. The aforementioned Thompson was 3/11 from three.
The Knicks wrap on their West Coast swing tonight at 9 p.m. in Utah. Like all the remaining games, this is one is a “must-win.”
That’s the worst feeling in the world, someone takes the game away from you, especially something you love. It’s all you know, you’ve been doing it your whole life. – JR SMITH
It took only one game for JR Smith to get his mind right (for now). Our knucklehead two-guard came off the bench in the second quarter and has his best 12 minutes of the season, scoring 11 points and dishing 4 assists to help ignite a 25-6 run and power the Knicks to their fourth-straight win. The Knicks are now poised to start climbing the playoff ladder.
SLUGGISH START AND OPEN PAINT: Melo had to sit early with two fouls and without their leader, the Knicks were sluggish all-around. No Tyson Chandler again (flu) had the paint wide open with the young Sixer guards like Michael Carter-Williams and Tony Wroten blowing past our defenders for easy layups. The Knicks were only shooting around 35% despite getting open looks and not defending the three-point line, allowing for the Sixers to take a 28-20 lead after the first.
JR’S SPARK: The team did a complete 180 with JR in the lineup to start the second. JR nailed his first three jumpers (one a three off a Melo offensive rebound), and everyone’s energy picked up. JR made sure to make the extra passes needed to keep Stoudemire and Melo feasting on the Sixer defense. When the smoked cleared, the Knicks had went on a 25-6 run over the last 8:40 and outscored Philly 32-12 in the period to take a 52-40 lead into halftime.
NEVER PUT AWAY, BUT NEVER BACK IN IT, EITHER: The Knicks never delivered the crushing blow to blow this game open, but they never lost focus enough to let Philly back in it. The latter was great to see considering NY has blown numerous big leads all season. The Knicks were up 84-68 after the third and let the Sixers get no closer than 8 points in the waning two minutes of the game.
REBOUNDING IMPROVEMENT: With Chandler out, the Knicks are making a concerted effort to crash the boards. Everyone chipped in to give NY a slight edge in the board battle (39-38): Melo (9), Martin (8) and Shumpert (7) were the strongest in this department.
STOUDEMIRE CONTINUES TO TURN BACK THE CLOCK: Someone must have told Amar’e it was 2009, because he came out and stayed in beast mode the entire night. He made his first seven shots, which included a handful of nasty dunks. His post moves were crisp and he fought for rebounds, often tipping it to fellow players when he couldn’t get it himself. We saw this same Stoudemire before he went down with knee problems last year so we can only pray he stays healthy. None of the teams we’ve played during this streak have had an answer for him. And even more promising is he’s doing a lot of his damage working two-man ball with Melo on the floor. Stat finished with 21 points and 5 rebounds.
TEAM DISTRIBUTION: The Knicks had 26 assists, a clear indicator the ball stayed moving. The stat lines for everyone were great with no one carrying too much of the load: Melo (18 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists), Stat (21 points, 5 rebounds), JR (14 points, 6 assists), K-Mart (8 points, 8 rebounds, 2 blocks), Shump (7 points, 7 rebounds, 4 steals), Felton (9 points, 6 assists) and Bargnani (10 points, 4 rebounds).
The Knicks are back home on Monday to face the Phoenix Suns.
The Knicks put together the best home win of the season last night with a complete team effort in defeating the Heat. After two months, the team (sans JR Smith) finally looks to have turned a corner.
MELO GETS HIS HELP: The question going into every game is who will help Melo with the scoring load. At their worst, the Knicks predictably dump the ball to Melo, many times with less than 10 seconds on the shot clock, for a low-percentage isolation shot.
Outside of the first few possessions, the Knicks were at their best in terms of ball movement, guarding the passing lanes, and attacking Miami’s weak interior defense. Andrea Bargnani (19 points), Iman Shumpert (12 points, 9 rebounds), Amar’e Stoudemire (14 poitns, 11 rebounds) and Raymond Felton (13 points, 14 assists) were the “secondary Big Four” that took the load off Melo and allowed him to operate more freely on offense.
MELO VS. LEBRON: We didn’t get to see as much of this as we should have. When they did guard each other, Melo got the better of it. LeBron was still able to have a monster stat line (32 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists) just because he’s the best player in the league, and poor Bargnani found himself switched off onto him way too many times.
MIAMI HELPS OUT AT THE FREE THROW LINE: The Heat could have made this a tighter game simply by hitting their free throws. They shot a very poor 52% (11/21) with Dwyane Wade being the main culprit (0-6). New York wasn’t any better at 50% (5/10).
TIM HARDAWAY JR: THJ made a new poster at the expense of Jesus Shuttlesworth aka Ray Allen. Yeah, our rookie got game.
THE 16-0 RUN: After getting embarrassed by a LeBron baseline dunk, Bargnani came right back with a three-point play on Wade to ignite a 9-0 run to end the fourth, highlighted by two Melo treys and Hardaway’s spectacular tip-in dunk. Usually with JR Smith in the 2nd unit lineup that starts the fourth, the Knicks have been giving up leads and momentum. This time, the point guard play of Toure Murry had Bargnani and Stoudemire carving up the Heat in the post and at mid-range.
CLOSING STRONG: When Felton came back in, there wasn’t any drop-off. Ray continued attacking the paint, which collapsed the Heat defense and got nice looks for Melo and Stat. And when Melo got what appeared to be an isolation play, Felton and others cut to basket allowing for easy layups and dunks. Felton also keep the defense honest by hitting several long jumpers.
ROLES DEFINED: The Knicks are finally playing like a team and everyone appears to know their roles. You can see the confidence and they should have it, considering two of their last four wins have come against the defending Eastern and Western Conference champions.
JR SMITH: Our knucklehead shooting guard sulked on the bench most of the night, but did put up an obligatory standing ovation at the final buzzer. In the locker room, he pouted about whether he still has a “future” on the team. We’ll see if JR finally wakes up, but I think he’s earned at least 2 games on the bench.
A win is a win, but last night’s game unnecessarily went down to the wire after the Knicks blew an early 15-point 4th quarter lead and had to rely on Melo free throws (and the ever-present bad Josh Smith jumpshot) to pull out a 89-85 victory at MSG.
2 BAD, 2 GOOD: Why did this game turn out to be so difficult? It’s hard to cruise to a win when your play right down the middle between horrible and great. The Knicks put together a very good first and third quarter, where they outscored Detroit 24-21 and 32-17, respectively. The second and fourth quarters saw them shooting under 35% and get outscored 20-17 and 27-16.
A THIRD THAT SHOULD HAVE ENDED MATTERS: After settling for a 41 tie at halftime, the Knicks blew open the game behind three consecutive treys from Carmelo Anthony to push the lead to 58-49. The rest of the team fed off that energy and became terrors in the passing lanes and on double teams to force seven turnovers (the majority of them on Josh Smith) that lead to repeated fast breaks, including a Shumpert three-point play on Greg Monroe. It turned out to be a 25-3 run that gave NY a 73-58 lead going into the fourth. That should have been the last we saw of the starters.
JR SMITH THE CATALYST: Knick fans have come to expect trouble when we see JR starting the fourth. He made several bad passes that lead to turnovers, and the Pistons began to creep back by getting to the foul line. JR had a few iso plays that went nowhere as well. Instead of getting benched, JR continued to get crucial fourth quarter minutes that did the team no favors. In his 30 minutes, JR contributed 6 points (2/6 shooting) and 2 assists. He also got some boos when introduced and very audible groans when he touched the ball in crunch time.
FELTON NEARLY BLOWS HIS SOLID RETURN: For most of the game, Raymond Felton played well in his return (12 points, 6 assists). He moved the ball and his jumper was working off pick n’ rolls. The big problems happened late in the fourth when he coughed off the ball on back to back possessions. They were the result of bad concentration — Jennings picked his pocket close to halfcourt, and Felton got stripped driving right into heavy traffic. On top of that, he missed a second free throw that would have iced the game. Thankfully, Melo got a key offensive rebound to save the day.
MELO VS. J-SMOOVE: Melo (34 points) and Josh Smith (21 points) were battling all night, with Melo getting the better of it most of the evening. However, Smith made a strong push late in the fourth to get the Pistons back in it and got a key offensive foul on Melo with less than 30 seconds remaining and 86-85. Smith then blundered with this airball jumper.
The funniest thing about this clip was Melo feeling mighty proud like he blocked the shot.
OTHER CONTRIBUTORS: Despite the game being uneven from a playing standpoint, the Knicks were able to gut this out due to varied team contributions. Andrea Bargnani cooled after a fast shooting start, but had a double double (13 points, 11 rebounds). Stoudemire got abused a lot by Detroit’s formidable frontcourt, but still managed to drop 9 points and 5 rebounds in 24 minutes. Shumpert only scored 5 points, but also had 6 rebounds and 5 assists in addition to being the main defensive spark in the third quarter run.
The Knicks got the win, but they’ll need to regain their Texas trip form if they have any hope of being the Miami Heat Thursday night.
Even with Carmelo Anthony out nursing a bum ankle, there was some hope going into these back to back Raptor games that the Knicks could find a spark and possibly go into the New Year just one game out of first place in the Atlantic Division. What New York and their fans got was a painful reminder of just how bad this Knicks team is. Despite playing hard down the stretch, New York displayed the worst of their defensive woes with needless switching and bad rebounding, allowing the Raptors to weather a late rally and storm back themselves to close out the Knicks.
KILLED ON THE BOARDS: The Knicks losing the rebounding battle is no surprise (45-37), but giving up 13 offensive rebounds is a death blow. The Raptors got so many second chance opportunities in the fourth. The Knicks were put into defensive scrambles that lead to open drives and three-pointers. Most disappointing here was Tyson Chandler, who managed just 2 rebounds in 27 minutes of play.
RAN AROUND THE COURT: The gave up three big runs over the course of the game that made winning this game unlikely. With the score tight early in the second quarter, the Knicks went into a zone defense and succumbed to a 12-0 run to go down 52-41. Overall, they were outscored 31-22 in the quarter and down 57-44 at halftime. In the third, the Knicks were on the wrong side of a 15-2 run and were behind by as much as 23 points before chipping away to take a 85-71 deficit into the fourth.
HAVE ALL THE 3-POINTERS YOU WANT, TORONTO!: The Raptors shot a deadly 47% from downtown (15/32), with Terrence Ross hitting a career-high seven treys. The perimeter was wide open and every guard, and even a forward or two, seemed to get in on the fun. The Knicks couldn’t rotate in time, and the constant, flat-out idiotic switching created repeated mismatches in Toronto’s favor.
THE PLAY THAT SEALED IT: Amar’e Stoudemire’s post-scoring, along with some good passing from Toure Murry, were the main factors in allowing the Knicks to trim the lead to six, 101-95. Demar Derozan had the ball and got away with pushing off Murry, who toppled to the floor. When Derozan tried to fly past, Murry reached out and swiped him, which Derozan sold well by toppling over. The hit was ruled a flagrant, leading to a five-point swing with both free throws made and a three-pointer swished on the extra possession, puting the Knicks in an 11-point hole (106-95) they never crawled out of.
JR THE PG: Raymond Felton and Pablo Prigioni being out continues to hurt badly. There were a few plays down the stretch that went nowhere due to JR having to be a playmaker and set up the offense.
THE POSITIVES BECOME NEGATED: Stoudemire (23 points, 9 rebounds) and Chandler (16 points) had solid scoring games, but the lack of defense neutralized that. The team couldn’t get stops or rebounds when it mattered. Woodson opted to sit Andrea Bargnani (12 points) in the fourth. Like last night’s game, Bargnani started strong in first and became a non-factor in the ensuing quarters.
NON-TRADE COMES BACK TO BITE US: While I think the Knicks made a good move not giving up so many players and a first round pick for Kyle Lowry, he sure did lit up New York tonight. He nearly had a triple double, going for 32 points, 8 rebounds and 11 assists. The man out-rebounded everyone on the Knicks except Stoudemire. Speaking of guards…
NY BACKCOURT: JR Smith was 1-8 until late in the game, still managing to put up a respectable stat line of 13 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists. However, with the Melo out the team was in dire need of scoring and playmaking, two things he couldn’t shoulder. Woodson went with Murry over Beno Udrih, who had already notched 4 turnovers before the fourth. Murry made some bad passes himself, but he at least showed some semblance of defense.
Iman Shumpert played like he wanted to be left in Toronto with Landry Fields and Steve Novak. He constantly gambled (and lost) on steals, leading to his man beating him backdoor for layups.
FRUSTATION LEVELS HIGH: Shumpert was seen barking back at Woodson in the waning minutes. Chandler also shoved Jonas Valanciunas under the basket. After the game, Chandler had to restrained by Herb Williams for some unknown reason.
FROM TERRIBLE BACK TO BAD: Is there any hope going into 2014? Well, at least when Melo finally comes back, the team will still be bad and flawed, but just a little less terrible than they are right now.
The questions about if Amar’e Stoudemire’s knees would hold up sans a minute restriction have been answered, as the injury-ridden former All-Star may be sitting indefinitely due to swelling.
The news came in scrimmage practice following the Knicks’ 102-101 loss at home to the Washington Wizards. According to Coach Mike Woodson, Stoudemire could be “out a while” due to the flare-ups.
Last night, Stoudemire took to Twitter and refuted the injury claims, stating he is only being held back as a precaution.
Fans, IM NOT INJURED, just want u to know I’m ONLY stay’n bk bc of 6 games n 9 days w/ bk2bks! Body & Knees feel great!
The Knicks play tonight on the road against the Milwaukee Bucks.
While I’d like to share Stat’s optimism, history tells me the man is banged up. This injury now reduces the Knicks available big men to Andrea Bargnani and Cole Aldrich. Tyson Chandler may be back this week, but likely not for tonight. I’m convinced the boxing gods hate us…
BOSTON, MA — Considering it was “Friday Night Knicks” AND Friday the 13th, another ridiculous and painful loss should have been expected. After a masterful third quarter filled with excellent ball movement with our frontcourt of Melo (26 points), Bargnani (22 points) and Stoudemire (18 points) carrying the scoring load behind nice pick n’ rolls and sweet passes from the likes of Pablo Prigioni, it all went to hell in the fourth with ice-cold shooting, broken plays, and a fatigued Melo trying to bail the team out with seconds remaining on the shot clock (he couldn’t). As you can deduce from the title, the bulk of this defeat falls on our backcourt and the coaching rotations of Coach Woodson.
BACKCOURT INEPTITUDE: Let’s get started with the reason the game was lost. Our guards shot a combined 3-20. Prigioni was 1-6 (although he did contribute 8 assists), Iman Shumpert 1-8 (including several airballs), and JR Smith went 0-1 despite playing 26 minutes and the entire fourth quarter (he sheepishly said afterward he was trying to get his teammates involved). There’s no way a team can win getting that little from their guard rotations.
The main issue that stood out is when the defense tightens, none of our guards can break down their man and get to the rim. This leads to a lot of passing on the perimeter that fails to set up the plays and leaves Melo, the only player that can consistently take his man one on one, being left to try to make something happen (many times 20 feet away from the basket). Secondly, our backcourt can’t keep anyone in front of them, putting a lot of pressure on a frontcourt that isn’t the most savvy defensively with Chandler still out.
4TH QUARTER CHOKE: The Knicks had a 73-68 going into the quarter but had to go at it without Kenyon Martin , who left the game limping with an abdominal strain. That hurt on the defensive end because K-Mart was having a strong game altering lay-ups and snatching down rebounds (8 points, 7 rebounds). Our defensive rotations got sloppy and the Celtics went on a 13-2 run to tie it at 81. A Melo drive for a three-point play would give NY their last lead to 84-81. Open back to back threes from Courtney Lee (18 points) and Avery Bradley (13 points) put the Celtics up for good 86-84. New York had their opportunities — Bargnani had a few open mid-range jumpers that bricked, and Melo’s pass out of a double team for an open JR Smith three could have put the Knicks back in front. The team could only manage 13 points in the quarter and were outscored 22-13.
STAT POSITIVITY: Amar’e Stoudemire continued his excellent offensive play, shooting 7-9 (18 points) and nabbing 5 rebounds. Once again, he seemed to be phased out for much of the 4th despite hitting a bailout jumper to put the Knicks up 81-78. We’ll all continue to be skeptical in wondering if his knees hold up, but so far he’s looking spry and strong in the post. As a precaution, he’ll likely sit today’s game against the Atlanta Hawks.
MORE HOPE ON THE HORIZON: From comments yesterday, it appears that Tyson Chandler will return this coming week. That won’t fix everything, but at least the interior defense and rebounding will get a boost.
The Knicks are back at the Garden tonight to face the Hawks at 7:30 p.m. ET.
The Knicks held off would have been an epic collapse in blowing a 23-point second half lead courtesy of a 33-10 run, but held on to defeat a Bulls team missing key starters and preventing another disgraceful home loss. There were some excellent positives in the first half, but the way the game ended had most Knicks fans shaking their heads. Nonetheless, a win is a win, and the Knicks need to take games like this if there’s any hope of this squad repeating as Atlantic Division champs.
MOVING THE BALL, FORCING TURNOVERS: Being that the Knicks went down by 20 in the first quarter of their last two games, it was considered a positive to see the team down by just two (17-15) despite shooting just 26%. With Raymond Felton out with a pulled left hamstring, Pablo Prigioni got the starting call. The quarter was ugly to watch in terms of offensive execution for New York, but there were flashes a good defense on both sides — the Bulls protected the rim with several blocks, and the Knicks forced multiples turnovers to keep it close.
FEED STAT: Playing the second night of a back to back, there was concern among the Knicks staff of what Amar’e Stoudemire could offer. That was quickly silenced with Stat showing his nifty Hakeem Olajuwon post moves and long-lost outside jumper for 10 points in 12 minutes of first half play. His work ignited a 19-0 run that included Beno Udrih giving valuable minutes at point guard, and Tim Hardaway lighting it up from the perimeter. The Bulls, with Mike Dunleavy cooling off from a hot first quarter, didn’t get their first field goal of the second quarter until five minutes were remaining.
Stat’s energy was also contagious. Kenyon Martin had an awesome three-block sequence around the rim that made the Bulls think twice about taking their shots inside. The ball movement and varied offense improved the Knicks shooting to 45% at the half, and they outscored Chicago 31-15 over the final 12 mintues to take 46-32 lead. Melo and Stat were a combined 10-16 from the field for 25 points.
THE TURNING POINT: All was still well early in the third. It wasn’t until a completely idiotic play from Stoudemire that things went south. He missed a pass that went into the backcourt. Instead of picking it immediately for the Over and Back turnover, Stat inexplicably just hovered around it like he was protecting a football punt. Dunleavy promptly picked it up and scored a lay-up.
Suddenly, the Knicks collectively lost their entire IQ. They started turning the ball over on what seemed like every play, and the Bulls attacked the rim for an 8-0 run to pull within 14 (68-54) at the end of the third.
FOURTH QUARTER COMEDY: The Knicks downward spiral continued with the team forgetting everything that got them the lead. The offense became predictable with the ball being constantly dumped into Melo for isolations, sometimes beginning around the three-point line. Melo wasn’t happy with these plays, but Prigioni couldn’t get any plays going and spent too much of the clock dribbling around the perimeter. With Stat on the floor, it made little sense that no plays were run for him.
While the Knicks were blowing layups and bricking jumpers, the Bulls were getting to the rim by breaking down the defense and getting a tip-in from Joakim Noah (which tied it at 74). The Bulls were on a massive 33-10 run, and it took a mid-range Stoudemire jumper to stop the bleeding and get the Knicks back up by 76-74.
NO “CLOSER” BENEFITS THE KNICKS: With the Bulls missing Luol Deng and Jimmy Butler on top of Derrick Rose, there was no one on the floor that could get their own shot consistently to put Chicago over the top. Their plays also degraded into random isolations and shot clock violations, allowing the Knicks to push the lead to five after Melo got to the line twice. In the end, the Knicks were able to hold on.
WOODSON LIVES ANOTHER DAY: If the Knicks would’ve lost this game, everyone would have been calling for Woody’s head (more than they already are now). It’s not all on him — the team has to get stronger mentally. But there’s no excuse why after scoring 10 points in the first half, Stat only ended up with 14 points for the game. Woody has to keep him involved throughout the game if he’s hot. We do not have many scoring options at the moment.
INJURIES: Iman Shumpert left the game in the third with a bruise to his left knee. Considering he was scoreless up until that point, it wasn’t a huge loss. Raymond Felton may have to miss significant due to a left pulled hamstring and didn’t play.
ANOTHER STREAK SNAPPED: The Knicks had lost the previous six games to the Bulls going back two seasons ago. Mentally, it had to be good to get a win considering it’s possible these teams could meet in the first round as fourth and fifth seeds.
The Knicks return to action on Saturday against the Celtics.