Monday night, he New York Knicks dug themselves another early hole and couldn’t recover in a 102-91 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers.
New York trailed by as many as 22 points but pulled to 81-74 on Andrea Bargnani’s 3-pointer early in the final quarter. But Nicolas Batum responded with a dunk, and Wesley Matthews added a 3-pointer to extend the lead again and put the game out of reach.
The Blazers truly took advantage of the Knicks’ major defensive holes, primarily due to Terry Stotts’ game plan Monday night. Eighty-two percent of Portland’s points were on 3-pointers, free throws or at-the-rim finishes.
The loss was the sixth in a row for the disappointing 3-10 Knicks and they have lost 11 of their past 13 in Portland.
With that being said let’s take a look at how each Knicks player graded out in another frustrating loss.
Beno Udrih (13 points, 5-of-7 shooting, 5 assists, 5 rebounds, 1 steal)
It was a solid day at the offensive end of the floor for Udrih as he made a contribution in every category. But similar to when Raymond Felton is in the game, Udrih once again got torched defensively as it looks as if the Knicks will once again have a difficult time with opposing point guards all season. Grade: C
Iman Shumpert (0 points, 0-3 shooting, 1 steal)
Saying Shumpert was awful would be kind. He only got three shot attempts up because the ball doesn’t move but to not tally a point, rebound or assist in 23 minutes is inexcusable, especially when he looked disinterested most of the night. Top that off with a game-worst minus-22 on the night and this was one to forget for Shump. Grade: F
Carmelo Anthony (34 points, 13-of-25 shooting, 15 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 1 block)
Melo had another big game and this time his 34 points came on 52 percent shooting which has been rare. Melo is doing what he can but unfortunately it hasn’t even been close to being enough. he was aggressive at both ends of the floor and continued to crash the glass with 15 rebounds. Unfortunately he’s not getting enough help from his teammates and that’s something that likely won’t change.
Anthony did note after the game that the Knicks’ problem is sharing the ball.
“When the ball doesn’t move, you can’t get into a rhythm,” he said. “(When the) ball’s not moving around, that makes it tough for the rest of the team to have fun out there. Right now, we’re not having fun.”
However a lot of that has to do with him. The only negative is that Anthony has to get more than three assists in 43 minutes for the Knicks to be effective. Grade: A-
Kenyon Martin (10 points, 5-of-9 shooting, 6 assists, 5 rebounds, 1 steal)
In 24 minutes, Martin scored 10 points on 5-of-9 shooting, dished six assists and grabbed five rebounds. He also played with great energy at both ends of the floor. Then Mike Woodson decided to go away from him in the second half. You have to play the guys who are effective. Grade: A
Andrea Bargnani (16 points, 7-of-16 shooting, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block)
It was another less than spectacular night for Bargnani, who scored 16 points, but needed 16 shots to do so in 43 minutes. In addition he was often horribly out of position on defense as his rotations were late or non-existent. While he has been able to put the ball in the basket, his lack of rebounding (only six in 43 minutes) and defense have been killing this team. Grade: C-
Amar’e Stoudemire (10 points, 5-of-12 shooting, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 block)
Stoudemire continues to look better and got 25 minutes of action. He did grab six rebounds in that span but did not have a good night scoring the ball as it took him 12 shot attempts to net 10 points. However if he continues to handle over 20 minutes per game I’m sure we will see some good things from STAT in the future. Grade: C
J.R. Smith (6 points, 2-of-8 shooting, 4 rebounds, 3 assists)
Speaking of killing the team, Smith continues to do so. Another bad performance from the floor leaves Smith shooting only 32.1 percent on the season. If Smith isn’t scoring effectively, and he hasn’t been, he can’t be given major minutes. even bad shot attempt is basically a turnover as his continuous fade away three’s lead to continuous transition attempts for the opposition. Smith doesn’t bring much in any other are to warrant major minutes if he is not shooting the ball well. The more minutes he keeps getting the more he keeps killing the team. Grade: F
Pablo Prigioni (0 points, 0-of-1 shooting, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal)
Prigioni didn’t make much of an impact at all in his 17 minutes. Grade: D
Metta World Peace (2 points, 1-of-4 shooting, 1 rebound, 1 assist)
The same can be said for World Peace as Woodson only went nine deep on the night. The veteran played only nine minutes but doesn’t seem to have a role on this team. Grade: D