Looks like the Knicks needed another reminder that you can’t play zero defense and expect lower level teams to roll over for you. Coach Mike Woodson made it a point to say in the last game that although they blew out the Pistons, they were outplayed in the second half and lucky to have had a big cushion. The Knicks didn’t have that cushion tonight and paid dearly for it in the deciding quarter.
THE TREYS NEVER STOP: From the first quarter the Knicks had a horrible time defending the perimeter shooters and keeping John Wall out of the paint. Wall would blow by his man (in most cases Felton) and that lead to wide open threes for Trevor Ariza and Martell Webster, who would go a combined 10-16 from downtown.
WHEN DID WALL BECOME A SHOOTING THREAT?!: Everyone knows John Wall can’t shoot. Hell, it’s hard not to shoot bricks with him in NBA 2K with his sliders on 100. So why on earth were our guards playing him tight? That allowed him to attack the rim and then it seemed like our whole team collapsed allowing for wide open three pointers.
WASHED IN THE 4TH QUARTER: The Knicks took a 73-70 lead in the fourth which evaporated in a matter of seconds with Melo fouling Ariza on the perimter for a four-point play. The Wizards took advantage of unexcusably lax Knicks defense, which on multiple occassions saw them late to get set down the floor and give up dunks to Nene and drives to Wall. With them unable to get stops, the Knicks resorted to iso Melo ball and long stepback jumpers from JR Smith… you know how those turn out in the long run. The Wizards would go on to outscore the Knicks 36-23 to emphatically close the game.
THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU’RE FEELING YOURSELF: The Knicks were able to turn it on at will the last two games against the Kings and Pistons. They came into D.C. feeling themselves and got a rude awakening of what happens when you play trash defense and have a lazy mentality for most of the game. Let’s hope this is a wake-up as the Knicks head to Minnesota to face the Timberwolves, another sub .500 team.