Sloppy Start Doom Knicks Against Magic, Lose 107-99


99. 27. 107. 38. Final

The New York Knicks came out playing carelessly and sloppy against the Orlando Magic Monday night.

New York committed foolish turnovers early and often… The Knicks committed seven first-quarter turnovers… and when the Knicks were not turning the ball over, they allowed Orlando to just score at will in the paint… The Magic scored 18 of their game total 52 points in the paint in the first quarter.

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The lone bright spot in the first quarter was Robin Lopez, who devastated the Magic with his hook-shot. New York really needs to allow Lopez to go to work in the low-post more often. Lopez too many time is getting the ball in the high-post to initiate the triangle offense but he literally can not do anything BUT pass in that position. To put it nicely, Lopez is not a threat to score in that position. Lopez scored eight of his dozen points in the opening quarter, including a vicious slam dunk on former-Knick Jason Smith.

New York was down by as many as nine points throughout the first three-quarters of play, but thanks to Carmelo Anthony carrying the team offensively throughout and Lance Thomas third quarter outburst, the Knicks cut the deficit down to one possession a few times. Thomas went a perfect 5/5 from the field to score a dozen points in the third quarter, finishing the game with 24 points on a perfect 9/9 shooting! Including 3/3 from downtown.

Arron Afflalo praised Thomas’ play Monday night.

"“Obviously he’s a great defender, but when he can take advantage of offensive opportunities, it’s a plus for us.”"

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Despite Thomas’ play, Orlando always had an answer and would make a mini-run. New York was never able to get over the hump, cutting the deficit down to one point a couple of times with less than four minutes to play. As spectacular as Thomas played all night, it was Thomas who made a crucial turnover under the basket with 2:37 remaining in the game with the score 95-92.

Evan Fournier capitalized on the turnover by scoring on a layup and then knocking in a cold-blooded three-pointer to lead a 11-2 Magic run that gave Orlando a double-digit lead with a minute left in the game; 104-94. The run was capped off by a Victor Oladipo highlight one-handed jam off a Anthony turnover.

A fitting way to end the night… as turnovers was what got the Knicks in trouble in the first quarter. New York finished the game committing 15 turnovers.

The Magic went on to win the game 107-99. Nikola Vucevic led all scorers with 26 points, and also collected 9 rebounds in the victory. Vucevic devastated New York all night, killing the Knicks with his hook-shot and mid-range jumper. The Knicks did not respect Vucevic’s jumper, closing him out short or not at all… and the 7 foot Montenegrin made New York pay.

Hometown kid Tobias Harris, had a nice return with 20 points, including three three-pointers and three steals.

Anthony had a all-around good night with 23 points, 4 rebounds, and 6 assists. Although, Anthony contributed heavily to the Knicks’ turnover problems Monday night, with five turnovers…

One interesting moment of the night was when Madison Square Garden broke out “Por-Zing-Is” chants late in the fourth quarter, during crunch time; signaling to head coach Derek Fisher that they wanted the rookie sensation to be put into the close game.

Although…Porzingis was struggling Monday night, going only 3/12 from the field for nine points. The 7’3″ Latvian also settled for way too many shots from outside, attempting six three-pointers, connecting on only one. However Porzingis did do Porzingis things, throwing the Magic a block party.

And throwing down alley-opp dunks!

Next: Report: The Knicks Could Look For Backcourt Help

The road does not get any easier, as the Knicks will take on the Cleveland Cavaliers Wednesday night before their much anticipated Christmas match up with the Golden State Warriors.