The New York Knicks came into this game undefeated since Mike Woodson became the team’s head coach and their wins were all by double-digits. The Knicks were still lackluster on the defensive end, but their offense was running smoothly and it seemed as though Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire were having fun playing basketball again.
In the Knicks’ previous game, they beat the Indiana Pacers at the Garden and knocked off a solid Eastern Conference opponent. However, in tonight’s game the Pacers were back at home and surely wanted to avenge their loss.
The Knicks did not have a lot of success on the defensive end in the opening quarter and were in a back-and-forth affair with the Pacers. Both teams were lighting it up from the court and it seemed like everything they put up found itself in the net. After 12 minutes of play, the Knicks were trailing by two, 35-33, the antithesis of their performance versus the Pacers in New York.
The Knicks did, however, face a seven point deficit but they turned that completely around in the second quarter. The Knicks went on a 20-7 run to open the period and were in complete control of the game. The Knicks’ second unit continued to play well, and this time, both the offense and defense were clicking at the same time.
At half time, the Knicks held a 60-51 lead after the Pacers went on a diminutive run to cut into the advantage. Anthony and Stoudemire led the way with ten points each and six other Knicks players scored six or more points.
The Pacers carried their confidence over to the third quarter and the 14 point deficit did not do anything to ruin their morale. Indiana came out of the locker-room hot and were playing well on both ends of the court. The Knicks had trouble scoring on the young team and the offense looked a little stagnant. As the lead dwindled down, the Knicks went back-and-forth with the Pacers and the game became quite thrilling.
As the Knicks and Pacers headed to the fourth quarter, New York was ahead by just three, 77-74.
The Knicks answered back with a great effort in the fourth quarter and the offense was once again clicking on all cylinders. However, it was the defense that sparked the run and allowed the Knicks to open up a double-digit lead. Jeremy Lin also came up big for the Knicks and his penetration in the paint gave him open looks in the paint and nice shots for his teammates on the perimeter.
The Pacers did make a small run towards the end of the game, but the Knicks answered back with key buckets and they eventually went on to win, 102-86. This marks the Knicks’ third consecutive win and puts them at 3-0 since Woodson became coach.