Saturday night, the New York Knicks did not come out with the same defensive intensity that they did only two days earlier against the San Antonio Spurs and it almost cost them a game.
But Carmelo Anthony took over and scored 16 of his 40 points in the fourth quarter as the Knicks came back to defeat the Orlando Magic 114-106.
The Knicks had plenty of trouble with Jameer Nelson through the first three quarters, as the Magic guard scored 29 points on them, but Mike Woodson’s team got some key fourth quarter stops and held Nelson scoreless in the fourth, while holding the Magic to only 17 points as a team in the game’s final quarter.
It wasn’t just ‘Melo though, as several Knicks players played a key role in the win.
With that being said, let’s take a look at how each Knicks player graded out in the comeback victory.
Field Goal Percentage: 47.7 %( 42-of-88)
Opponent’s Field Goal Percentage: 48.2% (41-of-85)
Three Point Percentage: 36.4% (12-of-33)
Opponent’s Three Point Percentage: 38.5% (10-of-26)
Free Throw Percentage: 81.8% (18-of-22)
Opponent’s Free Throw Percentage: 77.8% (14-of-18)
Assists: 24-23 (Knicks +1)
Rebounds: 45-40 (Magic +5)
Points in the paint: 44-36 (Magic +8)
Jason Kidd (15 points, 5-of-10 shooting, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 steals, 1 turnover)
Well that was more like it. After struggling for two games, Kidd was fantastic and filled the stat sheet. More importantly he found his jumper again, knocking down five shoots from behind the arc. He kept the nicks under control when it looked at times that the game could get away from them. That type of leadership can’t be taught. Grade: A-
Ronnie Brewer (2 points 1-of-4 shooting, 1 steal)
Brewer blew some defensive assignments early on and got benched for it, but despite only scoring two points and not grabbing a rebound in 17 minutes, Brewer did play a role in the win. He had an outstanding third quarter defensive, forcing a few key turnovers that the Knicks turned into points. Grade: C
Carmelo Anthony (40 points, 14-of-29 shooting, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 1 steal)
He scored from everywhere on the floor and put the Knicks on his back in the fourth quarter. Even more impressive was that he not only grabbed six boards, but dished out a season-high six dimes. Anthony was simply magnificent. Grade: A
Marcus Camby (2 points, 1-of-1 shooting, 1 rebound, 4 assists)
Camby only grabbed one rebound in 13 minutes, but made several nice passes that resulted in four assists, which you don’t necessarily expect from him. Keep in mind that he had only four assists all season. It was a nice day for Camby but he has to be a bigger factor on the boards, so his grade comes down a bit. Grade: B-
Tyson Chandler (14 points, 6-of-6 shooting, 12 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block)
Another solid outing for Chandler, who recorded another double-double. He was a presence around the rim at both ends of the floor, but Nikola Vucevic got the better of him on the glass in the fourth quarter. However he went 6-for-6 from the floor and pulled down five offensive rebounds. Grade: A-
Amar’e Stoudemire (11 points, 3-of-7 shooting, 4 rebounds, 1 assists)
Stoudemire was sloppy, but still scored 11 points and went 5-for-5 from the free-throw line. He is having a lot of trouble defensively, and you can see the drop-off in New York’s interior D when Stoudemire enters the game. Grade: C
J.R. Smith (18 points, 8-of-18 shooting, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals)
Smith saw his streak of 20 point games ended, mostly because of being in early foul trouble, but while he wasn’t spectacular, he was still pretty good. In addition to scoring 18 points, Smith was active on the glass and at the defensive end of the floor. Grade: B
Chris Copeland (0 points, 0-of-1 shooting)
Copeland only played four minutes and didn’t have any impact in the final result. Grade: Incomplete
Pablo Prigioni (5 points, 2-of-6 shooting, 2 assists, 1 rebound, 1 steal)
After a great game against the Spurs, Prigioni was non-existent against the Magic. Grade: D
Steve Novak (7 points, 2-of-6 shooting, 2 rebounds)
Novak knocked down a couple of three’s in the second quarter, but that was pretty much it from him on the night. Grade: C-
Rasheed Wallace: DNP- Foot
James White: DNP- Coach’s Decision
Kurt Thomas: DNP-Coach’s Decision
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