Knicks Win in High Scoring Second Preseason Game


142. 115. 27. Final. 104

Friday night the New York Knicks took on the Washington Wizards (their first NBA opponent in preseason game), after defeating Bauru 100-81 in their first exhibition game. The combination of Jose Calderon and Kristaps Porzingis helped give New York an early 14-11 lead. The duo combined for ten of the first Knicks’ 14 points.

Then Knicks’ franchise player Carmelo Anthony decided it would be a good idea to start demanding the ball…missing two field goals and committing one turnover  in the process. This allowed the Wizards to go on a 7-2 run to give Washington a 18-16 lead with 4:54 remaining in the first quarter. Washington would close out the quarter well and go into the second quarter with a 26-22 lead.

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Gary Neal provided a real spark off the bench for the Wizards to start the second quarter, scoring six points in four minutes, giving Washington an 37-33 lead early in the second quarter. New York was sloppy with the ball in the second quarter, giving Washington seven extra field goal attempts in the quarter. The Knicks were able to stay in the game, largely due to their ability to get to the free-throw line. New York made 11/12 from the charity stripe in the quarter. This is encouraging because last season New York was pitiful at getting to the line… second to last in the league at free-throw attempts per game.

Then all the sudden New York exploded on offense, going on a 11-4 run in the last 98 seconds of the first half. A couple of shots from Anthony and three-pointers from Sasha Vujacic and Calderon, and New York found themselves going into halftime with a 60-55 lead.

Back-to-back three-pointers from Vujacic and Anthony in the middle of the third quarter gave New York a 15-point lead, 72-57. Although…New York would almost all but lose their lead as they went over four minutes with only one field goal to end the third quarter. Washington kept attacking the paint, getting free-throws and layups to get back into the game. New York held on for dare life, entering the final quarter with a 85-83 lead.

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Washington would take the lead early in the fourth quarter on a Kris Humphries‘ jump shot. Humphries said that he is attempting to change his game, to morph into a stretch-4. This actually helped the Knicks, as Humphries was only 1/6 from downtown for the night. New York would take the lead back on their new-found ability to get to the line, going to the charity stripe in the 3-out-of-the-next-4 possessions, giving the Knicks a 96-89 lead with 7:44 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Both teams would basically go on to trade baskets for the rest of the game but during that time, Derrick Williams made a case for himself to gain more playing-time in the regular season, scoring 13 of his game-high 23 points in the fourth quarter. Williams scored 23 points in 21 minutes of play.

Anthony had himself another good shooting game, going 10/15 from the field for 21 points. Porzingis had himself a very productive night, with a plus15 +/-, almost collecting a double-double with 9 points and 10 rebounds. The rebounding was nice to see from Porzingis, the rookie only collected two rebounds in his first preseason game, double digits is a MAJOR improvement.

Washington wants to take more three-pointers this season, even though they don’t necessary have the sharpshooters on the roster to do so… Friday night they went a dreadful 4/23 from beyond the arc.

New York will get two days to rest up for the Philadelphia 76ers Monday night.

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