GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Craig Robinson was in his office with the Milwaukee Bucks one day this July when Knicks President Steve Mills phoned him.

Mills and Robinson, Michelle Obama's brother and Barack Obama's brother-in-law, had been teammates at Princeton for two years and both graduated with degrees in sociology.

On this day, Mills, who had recently taken over the reins of the Knicks after Phil Jackson was fired by owner Jim Dolan, was calling to offer Robinson a new job as as vice president of player development and G League operations.

"Hey, I have the perfect job for you," Mills told his old teammate.

The problem was, Robinson and his wife, Kelly, had just closed on their house in Milwaukee and their sons, Austin, 7, and Aaron, 5, were about to start school, so he balked.

"Steve, I don't think I'll be able to do it this year," Robinson said from his office with the Bucks. "No, you've got to hear this," Mills insisted.

"And then once he described the job, I was like, oh, man, I better tell my wife about this," Robinson, 55, said this week at the Knicks facility with a broad smile that resembles that of his younger sister. He ultimately took the job and moved to New York without his family, who remain in Milwaukee. They will decide their next step as far as where to live as a family after this season.

Robinson was introduced in August as part of a new wave of post-Jackson hirings by Mills and new GM Scott Perry that also included Gerald Madkins as assistant general manager, Harold Ellis as director of player personnel, Michael Arcieri as director of basketball strategy, and Fred Cofield as a scout.

"Last month, the day after I was hired, I started a full evaluation of the entire basketball operations staff," Perry said then in a statement. "My first goal was to build-up the highest level front office in the NBA. We are adding a host of highly-regarded and respected basketball people to work with the Knicks to fortify the franchise for years to come."

Robinson had served as the head coach at Brown University and Oregon State for a combined eight seasons, compiling a 124-133 record. After getting fired in 2014, he worked as a college basketball analyst for ESPN before taking a job in the Bucks front office in 2016.

"I worked for the Milwaukee Bucks," Robinson said. "Prior to that I was doing what you guys were doing, I was working on TV. So I had really no inclination to work in the NBA. I thought eventually I'd either go back to college basketball or stay with TV."



Though he has just begun, Robinson seems to be relishing his new role, which included advising the Westchester Knicks during the recent G League draft. (The league was formerly known as the NBA D-League but is now called the G League because it is sponsored by Gatorade).

"I started out in corporate America working in investment banking, so I've got an MBA," Robinson said. "So what this position allows me to do is to marry the two things that I actually have experience doing, business and basketball, and it's a real refreshing feeling to be able to use all the tools you kind of put in your tool kit during your life and then you get to use them all in one place, not just part of them."

As for how he described his new position, Robinson said his role is focused on player development. "What Steve and Scott and the folks here at the Knicks believe is that the overall development of players is as important as anything else in the organization," Robinson said. "That's what made this really attractive for me because you've got somebody who sort of sees the world the way that I see it and they'd like me to be the architect of it so I'm really excited about that part.

"The other thing is that both Steve and Scott and ownership here, Mr. Dolan, they're all about the off-the-court development of these players. If I had to be the poster child for something that would be it because all of these guys are going to have more non-basketball life than they are going to have basketball life and if they're prepared for that, even if they're ex-NBA players, it's exactly what we should be doing."

Allan Houston, the formers Knicks star who is now the GM for for the Knicks' G League team, the Westchester Knicks, says Robinson can be an invaluable resource for not only the young players on the team, but his colleagues as well.

"Having someone like Craig, when players can talk with him and sit with him and know that he can have that perspective, I think it's very beneficial to a lot of guys," Houston said. "I know if I was a player, I'd take advantage of it."

"Craig brings a lot," he added. "I just enjoy talking to him about life, about basketball, leadership. He has just a wealth of knowledge, from his banking background to coaching to seeing a lot of the players at a younger age, being able to recruit them and seeing how they developed, he has a lot of perspective on what we're doing and developing, not just for basketball but developing the whole person. And I think that's one of the things that Steve has always been adamant about, Scott has been really vocal about."

With the Knicks in a rebuilding mode following the trade of Carmelo Anthony to Oklahoma City in September, Robinson believes the development of the players on the Westchester Knicks could also facilitate the big club.

"We want to develop guys who are good enough to move over to the big Knicks, but we also want to be an organization that helps the current Knicks when they need some players to come over -- we're trying not to use the term "down" -- and get some run either in a rehabilitation standpoint or if they're not playing much over here [with the Knicks], they can come over and get some run with us over there," he said.

Being a former college coach also gives Robinson insights into many of the players on the Westchester Knicks roster, even if he was never able to recruit the likes of an Isaiah Hicks (North Carolina), Nigel Hayes (Wisconsin) or Trey Burke (Michigan) to Brown or Oregon State.

"It's highly improbable," he joked of his chances of recruiting those players. "I would've tried to begin with and then if I didn't get on the list, I would've moved on."



"I always thought I could evaluate talent," he added. "The fact that I've looked at high school and college players for the last 16 years probably at least gives me the right to put it on my resume, so I don't know how good I'll be at. I also think the two years working in TV helps a lot because when you're recruiting you only recruit the guys that you have a chance of getting. You can't recruit the No. 1 guy in the nation, he's not going to come to Brown University or Northwestern or Oregon State. But now you get a chance to look at everybody and that's a cool thing to sort of be dealing in the best of the best."

With college basketball now in the headlines due to the recent FBI investigation into bribery in college basketball, Robinson was asked his thoughts on the current state of the game at that level. Asked if he was surprised that high school recruits had allegedly been paid to attend certain colleges, including the allegations that an Adidas representative conspired to pay Brian Bowen's family $100,000 in exchange for him attending Louisville and signing with Adidas upon turning pro, Robinson said he wasn't shocked.

"If you're in college basketball, you know what's going on so I wasn't surprised," he said. "And I was beyond disappointed because once you realize that's going on you're disappointed in it but understand that some people do business that way. So it will be interesting to see how it all works out, I'll leave it at that."

Robinson even joked that some high school players were allegedly getting paid more to attend certain colleges than pro players were making in the G League. Several players in the FBI complaint were allegedly offered $100,000 or $150,000 to attend specific colleges, whereas G League players earn one of two salaries-$19,500 or $26,000-for the six-month D-League season. Meantime, Americans, or other players, who compete in top leagues overseas can earn six- or even seven-figure salaries.

"Well if you're reading what's going on in the paper, they're getting paid more from going to college" than the G League, Robinson joked.

Asked if he was glad to be in the professional ranks while this scandal taints college basketball, Robinson said, "No, because I would be the guy who could sleep at night because that's the best thing about not being in that situation."

All of this, of course, begs the question of whether someone like Bowen, who is currently restricted from practicing at Louisville due to the school's own internal decision following the FBI investigation and the firing of coach Rick Pitino, could instead enter the G League and get paid this year. Or whether any high school player who wanted to skip college and pursue the professional route would pursue the G League.

"I think people just want an opportunity," Robinson said. "It feels like to me that guys who have the chance of being in the NBA want to find the path of least resistance. And that could end up being the G League. And I don't mean that in a negative way. When you think about players who are one-and-done, does it really make sense to risk your future on nine months [in college] health-wise or perception-wise when you could actually be coming to a place like Westchester and developing into an NBA player."

Houston also said he wasn't surprised by the bribery scandal and hoped that it could somehow turn out to benefit the G League.

"It will be interesting to see how it plays and hopefully the timing is advantageous to us in that maybe this league can be something that helps, another resource that provides some development," Houston said. "Whatever happens with the [NBA] age limit, I still think this league should be a grounds for development and that's what our goal is to be."

As for whether Barack and Michelle Obama will ever turn up at the Westchester County Center to support Robinson and his team, he left the door open.

"Man, put it this way, if we win enough games, they'll come," he said.

"That's even more incentive for our guys, hopefully," Houston added with a smile.

Follow @AdamZagoria on Twitter


New York Knicks guard Frank Ntilikina goes to the basket against Memphis Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks during the first half at FedExForum. (Justin Ford/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks guard Frank Ntilikina goes to the basket against Memphis Grizzlies forward Dillon Brooks during the first half at FedExForum. (Justin Ford/USA TODAY Sports)

Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek dismissed the idea of demoting rookie point guard Frank Ntilikina to G League Westchester after he has been held scoreless two of the past three games.

"We don't talk about that stuff," Hornacek said after Sunday's 127-107 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, according to Newsday's Al Iannazzone. "Frank has been in the rotation all year. So there's no reason to do that. There's going to be ups and downs as a rookie. ... They're going to have a lack of confidence at times when they're not playing, but I don't see that in Frank."

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Jarrett Jack
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Los Angeles Lakers forward Corey Brewer dribbles against New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. during the second half at Staples Center. (Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)
Los Angeles Lakers forward Corey Brewer dribbles against New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. during the second half at Staples Center. (Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

Several Knicks players were disappointed with the team's effort in Sunday's 127-107 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center.

"They wanted it more," Tim Hardaway Jr. said, according to the New York Daily News' Stefan Bondy. "So we can't let that happen. It shouldn't be happening."

Tags: Los Angeles Lakers, Tim Hardaway Jr.
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New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. guards Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram in the first half of the game at Staples Center. (Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. guards Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram in the first half of the game at Staples Center. (Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports)

Jordan Clarkson had 29 points and 10 assists, Julius Randle added 27 points and 12 rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers beat the New York Knicks 127-107 on Sunday for their sixth win in eight games.

Kyle Kuzma added 15 points for the Lakers (17-29), who continued their midseason surge of solid play. Rookie point guard Alex Caruso set career highs with nine points and eight assists, making the most of extensive playing time in the absence of injured Lonzo Ball.

Kristaps Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Michael Beasley scored 17 points apiece for the Knicks, who have lost 12 of 16. New York slipped to 2-2 on its seven-game trip.

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis, Los Angeles Lakers, Tim Hardaway Jr.
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Nov 13, 2017; New York, NY, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers small forward LeBron James (23) and New York Knicks center Enes Kanter (00) are separated by New York Knicks shooting guard Courtney Lee (5) during the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 13, 2017; New York, NY, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers small forward LeBron James (23) and New York Knicks center Enes Kanter (00) are separated by New York Knicks shooting guard Courtney Lee (5) during the first quarter at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ahead of the Knicks' matchup against the Lakers, Knicks C Enes Kanter was asked about a cryptic tweet and his controversial matchup against LeBron James and the Cavaliers earlier in the season.

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New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis shoots on a technical during the fourth quarter against the LA Clippers at Madison Square Garden. (Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis shoots on a technical during the fourth quarter against the LA Clippers at Madison Square Garden. (Anthony Gruppuso/USA TODAY Sports)

The Los Angeles Lakers will get another look at a player they could have taken in the 2015 NBA Draft when the New York Knicks visit Sunday.

Tags: D'Angelo Russell, Kristaps Porzingis
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New York Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. drives to the basket against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first half at Quicken Loans Arena. (Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. drives to the basket against the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first half at Quicken Loans Arena. (Ken Blaze/USA TODAY Sports)

Knicks F Tim Hardaway Jr. is focused on doing his part to help the Knicks make the playoffs this season.

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New York Knicks' Enes Kanter participates in a practice in Greenburgh, N.Y., Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)
New York Knicks' Enes Kanter participates in a practice in Greenburgh, N.Y., Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)

There were more than a few storylines to follow as the Knicks beat the Jazz 117-115 in Utah on Friday night.

From Jeff Hornacek's years in Utah as a player then assistant coach, the battle of rookie point guards between Frank Ntilikina and Donovan Mitchell as well as a pair of former Jazz taking the floor for the Knicks in Trey Burke and Enes Kanter. 

Burke, playing in just his second game for the Knicks, did well. In 15 minutes, he scored 7 points with 2 assists and 2 rebounds. He played 10 minutes in the fourth quarter. 

"I'm getting there," Burke said... 

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New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. drives around Utah Jazz guard Ricky Rubio in the first half during an NBA basketball game Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer) (AP)
New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. drives around Utah Jazz guard Ricky Rubio in the first half during an NBA basketball game Friday, Jan. 19, 2018, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer) (AP)

Salt Lake City (AP) Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 31 points and the New York Knicks rallied to beat the Utah Jazz 117-115 on Friday night.

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Trey Burke (33) (Tommy Gilligan)
Trey Burke (33) (Tommy Gilligan)

After being drafted ninth overall by the Jazz in 2013, Utah had high hopes for Trey Burke. After a promising rookie season in which Burke started 68 games, averaging 12.8 points and 5.7 assists per game, it all started going downhill.

Four years later, Burke was out of Utah and rotting on the Wizards' bench. What went wrong? 

"Young Trey Burke was not all the way focused on basketball,'' Burke said, via Marc Berman of NY Post. "Distractions going on in my life as a young player..."

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December 29, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker (15) celebrates after making a basket against the Golden State Warriors during the fourth quarter at Oracle Arena. The Hornets defeated the Warriors 111-100. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports (Kyle Terada)
December 29, 2017; Oakland, CA, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker (15) celebrates after making a basket against the Golden State Warriors during the fourth quarter at Oracle Arena. The Hornets defeated the Warriors 111-100. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports (Kyle Terada)

After making All-Star guard Kemba Walker available for trades, the Hornets 'would like to' open negotiations with the Knicks, according to Ian Begley of ESPN. 

According to Begley's report, talks haven't really gotten off the ground between the clubs. The Hornets want either a young player or draft pick while also shedding another contract, perhaps Marvin Williams, Nic Batum or Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. 

The Knicks have a few young players, like Frank Ntilikina and Willy Hernangomez as well as their first-round draft pick this summer, but don't particularly have the room, or desire, to add cap space. 

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Dec 14, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Knicks small forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) reacts during the third quarter against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Dec 14, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Knicks small forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) reacts during the third quarter against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

SALT LAKE CITY -- Staying on the fringes of the playoff picture is becoming harder for both the New York Knicks and the Utah Jazz.

When the two teams clash in Salt Lake City on Friday night, both will be searching to build some critical momentum to reverse recent struggles. New York has dropped 11 of its last 14 games. Utah has lost 15 of its last 20 contests.

Frustrations came to a head for the Knicks (20-25) in a 105-99 loss to Memphis on Wednesday. The Grizzlies led by as many 18 points in the third quarter before New York rallied within a basket in the final minute.

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New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis warms up prior to taking on the Utah Jazz at Madison Square Garden. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis warms up prior to taking on the Utah Jazz at Madison Square Garden. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)

The NBA revealed 2018's All-Star starters on Thursday night, and Kristaps Porzingis was not one of the East's five voted in. The frontcourt spots went to LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Joel Embiid, leaving no room for Porzingis.

The All-Star starters were decided between the fans, players and media: fan vote accounted for 50 percent, while current players and basketball media each accounted for 25 percent each of the equation. Porzingis was voted ahead of Embiid by the players, but Embiid got the nod from the fans and media.

"Players know," Porzingis said, via Stefan Bondy of NY Daily News. "That's all I'm going to say..."

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New York Knicks center Enes Kanter shooting guard Courtney Lee react from the bench during the fourth quarter against the Boston Celtics at Madison Square Garden. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks center Enes Kanter shooting guard Courtney Lee react from the bench during the fourth quarter against the Boston Celtics at Madison Square Garden. (Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports)

Center Enes Kanter reiterated his will to retire a New York Knick in an interview with ESPN's Ian Begley.

The 25-year-old Kanter, in his first season in New York after it acquired him in September's Carmelo Anthony trade with the Oklahoma City Thunder, said earlier this month he didn't want to play for anybody else, and echoed those same sentiments on Friday.

"Before I came here," Kanter told Begley, "you were hearing it or were thinking, 'Oh, it's New York, they haven't made the playoffs for the last whatever years. The organization is not good. They're changing the GMs and all this other stuff. People are not good there.' ... But after I came, I realized that this is the place that I want to be and to play for a long time. Because people in the organization are so warm and so welcoming."

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Dec 27, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez (42) and New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) go for a loose ball during the first quarter at United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports (David Banks)
Dec 27, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez (42) and New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) go for a loose ball during the first quarter at United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports (David Banks)

Kristaps Porzingis fell just on the outside looking in to be a starter in the 2018 All-Star game, finishing behind LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Joel Embiid in the frontcourt. Kyrie Irving and DeMar DeRozen were voted in as guards. The All-Star game will be held on February 18 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. 

After a hot start to the season and pushing the Knicks to an overachieving record, both Porzingis and the Knicks have regressed of late, though Porzingis still has impressive numbers. He's averaging 23.6 points on 43 percent shooting with 6.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game. 

The All-Star starters were decided between the fans, players and media: fan vote accounted for 50 percent, while current players and basketball media each accounted for 25 percent each of the equation.

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis
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Jeff Hornacek on the hot seat? 00:04:18
Frank Isola joins Daily News Live to discuss his article on the rumors about Jeff Hornacek's job security in New York.

Jeff Hornacek might be coaching for his job over the Knicks' final 37 games this season, according to Frank Isola of NY Daily News. Isola also reports there are 'whispers' that Mark Jackson may return to the franchise and replace Hornacek. 

The Knicks 105-99 loss to the Grizzlies on Wednesday night served as a gut-punch to their playoff hopes, a demoralizing loss that dropped the team to 20-25, four games in the loss column out of the East's final playoff spot.

After the game, Hornacek refused to blame questionable officiating towards the end of the game.

"You got to go out there and take the game right from the start and we didn't do it," Hornacek said...

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek doesn't want to hear about Courtney Lee's late techincal foul costing his team the game. They shouldn't have been in that position in the first place. 

The Knicks looked lackadaisical throughout the 105-99 loss to the Grizzlies Wednesday night. It wasn't until the fourth quarter that New York started showing some life, and giving Memphis something to worry about. However, Lee was hit with a tech after exchanging words with rookei Dillon Brooks before at jumpball with 17.8 seconds left. The Knicks were down three at that point, but the technical killed any hope of them completing the comeback. 

Hornacek didn't want to talk about the technical foul and whether it was appropriate to call it after the game. Instead, he pointed at his team's lack of drive from the beginning, which in his mind, led to the bad loss. ..

Tags: Courtney Lee
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 (Justin Ford)
(Justin Ford)

Knicks SG Courtney Lee believes he was the latest victim of bad refereeing after a questionable technical foul cost the Knicks' comeback late in Memphis. 

Crew chief Derrick Stafford hit Lee with a tech at 17.8 seconds left in the fourth quarter with the Knicks down just three before a jump ball. Lee and Grizzlies' rookie Dillon Brooks were exchanging words, but the 10-year veteran swears nothing explicit was said. However, Stafford hit only Lee with the foul, which ended the Knicks' hope to finish their comeback. 

"I'm at a loss for words," Lee told The Daily News' Frank Isola. "I wasn't expecting to get a tech."

Tags: Courtney Lee
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Jan 17, 2018; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies guard Tyreke Evans (12) goes to the basket against New York Knicks forward Lance Thomas (42) during the second half at FedExForum. Memphis Grizzlies defeated the New York Knicks 105-99. Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports (Justin Ford)
Jan 17, 2018; Memphis, TN, USA; Memphis Grizzlies guard Tyreke Evans (12) goes to the basket against New York Knicks forward Lance Thomas (42) during the second half at FedExForum. Memphis Grizzlies defeated the New York Knicks 105-99. Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports (Justin Ford)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) Tyreke Evans had 23 points, including three free throws in the closing seconds, along with 10 assists to lift the Memphis Grizzlies over the New York Knicks 105-99 on Wednesday night.

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis
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The Memphis Grizzlies will seek consecutive victories for the first time since October when they continue a three-game homestand against the New York Knicks on Wednesday.

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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

After sitting out on Monday against the Nets, Tim Hardaway Jr. is back in the Knicks' lineup for their matchup against the Grizzlies on the road Wednesday. 

Head coach Jeff Hornacek said he would be easing Hardaway back into his scheme as he returns from missing 20 straight games with a stress injury in his leg. He played 33 minutes against the Pelicans this past Sunday, which led to the Knicks shutting him down on Monday. 

The 25-year-old understands the process, and is ready to contribute during the Knicks six-game trip to the West Coast. 

Tags: Tim Hardaway Jr.
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Dec 30, 2017; New Orleans, LA, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) dribbles during the first half against New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) at Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports (Stephen Lew)
Dec 30, 2017; New Orleans, LA, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) dribbles during the first half against New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) at Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports (Stephen Lew)

Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis checks in at fifth among the NBA's top-selling jerseys for the first three months of the season.

Warriors guard Steph Curry, Cavaliers forward Lebron James, Warriors forward Kevin Durant and Bucks forward Miles Antetokounmpo precedeed Porzingis on the list. The Knicks' 22-year-old cornerstone placed fourth and sixth, respectively, in jersey sales the last two years.

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis
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Daily News Live: Knicks' outlook 00:03:51
Stefan Bondy joins Daily News Live to discuss the highs and lows of the New York Knicks around the midpoint of the season.

Stefan Bondy joins Daily News Live to discuss the highs and lows of the New York Knicks around the midpoint of the season. 


Trey Burke (Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports)
Trey Burke (Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports)

In just eight minutes, the Knicks' newest PG Trey Burke showed exactly what he can bring to the table for the second half of the season.

The former Jazz first-rounder touched the floor daunting the blue and orange for the first time against the Nets on Monday, and he didn't disappoint in his limited time. He saw six minutes in the second quarter, where he knocked down his first shot -- a pull-up two after pump faking Rondae Hollis-Jefferson

Burke would notch five points, going 1-of-3 from the field while hitting 3-of-4 free throw attempts. He also tallied one rebound and two assists to the liking of all the Knicks cheering him on throughout the game. It wasn't much, but Burke was happy in his first NBA minutes in a long time. 

Tags: Frank Ntilikina
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 (Andy Marlin)
(Andy Marlin)

Kristaps Porzingis said he needed to make an adjustment in his style of play, and he answered with a 26-point surge against the Nets on Monday. 

Teams have changed their defensive scheme on Porzingis after his MVP-calibur start to the season, whether it is double teams or playing small. It has forced Porzingis to adapt, and in turn, struggles have followed. 

"I think in the beginning of the season, I was free. I was just playing my game and things seemed to happen so smoothly," Porzingis told ESPN's Ian Begley. "(Then) there was moments when all kinds of different defense, the attention was on me, and I felt like I still had to put up the same numbers. I think now I'm starting to realize it doesn't need to be that way. I can just let the game flow and see what happen and i can make the right play and not force and try to get those numbers."...

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kristaps Porzingis, Kyle O'Quinn, Scott Thompson
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Knicks guard Frank Ntilikina (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)
Knicks guard Frank Ntilikina (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)

Knicks rookie guard Frank Ntilikina came up just shy of his first-career triple-double in Monday's 119-104 win over the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center.

The 19-year-old guard scored 10 points and recorded 10 assists for his first double-double, and came three rebounds shy of a triple-double as New York snapped a three-game losing streak.

"He played with some fire," Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek said of Ntilikina, according to the New York Daily News' Stefan Bondy.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina
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GEICO SportsNite: Knicks/Nets 00:00:57
On GEICO SportsNite, Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek and Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson give their thoughts on their teams' Monday matchup.

Kristaps Porzingis had 26 points and nine rebounds, Michael Beasley added 23 points and 10 boards, and the New York Knicks opened their longest road trip in nearly 30 years by beating the Brooklyn Nets 119-104 on Monday.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Kristaps Porzingis
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Dec 10, 2017; New York, NY, USA; Atlanta Hawks guard Dennis Schroder (17) defends against New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Dec 10, 2017; New York, NY, USA; Atlanta Hawks guard Dennis Schroder (17) defends against New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) during the first half at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

In his first season as the Knicks' franchise player, Kristaps Porzingis admits it has been a challenge to live up to the expectations placed on him. 

At the beginning of the season, Porzingis flourished in his new role, sitting atop the leaderboards in points per game. The game seemed to come easier to the 7-foot-3 Latvian, who expected to shoot about 20 shots per game. However, teams began figuring out how to guard Porzingis, and recently, his production has taken a big hit. 

Couple his tough defenders with injury issues like his sprained right ankle, Porzingis is beginning to realize he has to adapt his game to being in the spotlight every night on the court. 

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

NEW YORK -- The road struggles of the New York Knicks already are a focal point. Their issues away from midtown Manhattan are about to become even more magnified if they continue.

The Brooklyn Nets would like to be the opponent handing the Knicks another road loss.

The Knicks start their season-high seven-game road trip Monday afternoon when they cross the East River to face the Nets at Barclays Center.

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New York Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)

Knicks guard Tim Hardaway Jr. said he felt "good" after scoring 25 points in his second game back from a 20-game absence due to a left leg injury in Sunday's 123-118 overtime loss to the New Orleans Pelicans at Madison Square Garden.

"It's going to take a couple of games for me to really get a feel and idea when I'm out there on the floor," Harsaway said, according to NorthJersey.com's Steve Popper. "First and foremost I felt good."

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GEICO SportsNite: Knicks 00:01:04
Jeff Hornacek, Jarrett Jack, Courtney Lee and Tim Hardaway, Jr. react to a 123-118 loss in OT to the Pelicans, as a rough January continues.

The Knicks blew a 19-point second-half lead and lost to the New Orleans Pelicans 123-118 in overtime Sunday at Madison Square Garden.

Tags: Frank Ntilikina, Jarrett Jack, Joakim Noah, Kristaps Porzingis, Lance Thomas, New Orleans Pelicans, Tim Hardaway Jr., Willy Hernangomez
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Dec 30, 2017; New Orleans, LA, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) dribbles during the first half against New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) at Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports (Stephen Lew)
Dec 30, 2017; New Orleans, LA, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) dribbles during the first half against New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) at Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports (Stephen Lew)

NEW YORK -- The high-scoring New Orleans Pelicans head to Madison Square Garden on Sunday to play slumping New York, some two weeks after the Knicks shut down everyone but the Pelicans' Big 2 in a 105-103 victory at New Orleans.

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis
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Oct 24, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Knicks guard Ramon Sessions (1) (Winslow Townson)
Oct 24, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; New York Knicks guard Ramon Sessions (1) (Winslow Townson)

The Knicks signed G Trey Burke, the team announced on Sunday.

The team did not disclose terms of the contract, which was annonced one day after Ramon Sessions was waived.

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New York Knicks' Kristaps Porzingis (6) celebrates with teammate Tim Hardaway Jr. after scoring late in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Charlotte Hornets Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, in New York. The Knicks won 118-113. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II) (Frank Franklin II/AP)
New York Knicks' Kristaps Porzingis (6) celebrates with teammate Tim Hardaway Jr. after scoring late in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Charlotte Hornets Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, in New York. The Knicks won 118-113. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II) (Frank Franklin II/AP)

During Tim Hardaway Jr.'s 20 game absence due to a stress-related left leg injury, the Knicks went 8-12 and their offense appeared particularly slow without the $71 million man. Fans and teammates alike were happy to see his return on Friday night against the Timberwolves.

The Knicks lost 118-108 but Hardway Jr. enjoyed a successful first game back. Off the bench with a minutes restriction, Hardway Jr. scored 16 points on 6-13 shooting. He added 3 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals in 25 minutes. 

Without Hardway Jr., Kristaps Porzingis has been tasked with shouldering the majority of the offensive burden....

Tags: Kristaps Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr.
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Dec 22, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Dec 22, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Tim Hardaway Jr. made his long-awaited return after a 20 game absence due to a stress-related left leg injury against the Timberwolves on Friday night, but the Knicks lost 118-108. Hardway Jr. scored 16 points off the bench in 25 minutes.

It was a strong return for Hardaway, who is on a minutes restriction. He easily led the Knicks in plus/minus at plus-11 and his 16 points came on 6-13 shooting. All in all, he was actually surprised that he felt so good.

"Conditioning felt good actually,'' Hardaway said, via Marc Berman of NY Post. "I was very surprised. It will take a couple of games before I get a feeling of who I am on the floor..."

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 (Brett Davis)
(Brett Davis)

One positive to pull from the Knicks' loss to the Timberwolves Friday night was the return of Tim Hardaway Jr. after a 20-game hiatus. 

Hardaway wasted no time getting shots up in the 24 limited minutes head coach Jeff Hornacek gave him. He went 6-for-13 from the field, including 4-of-8 from three-point land. He also had three boards, two assists, and two steals while posting a +11. 

The most important aspect to pull out of his performance, though, was the fact that he didn't show any pain in his leg. Hardaway had been battling a stress reaction in his leg for over a month...

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Jan 12, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns (32) drives to the basket against New York Knicks center Enes Kanter (00) in the first half at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)
Jan 12, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns (32) drives to the basket against New York Knicks center Enes Kanter (00) in the first half at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports (Jesse Johnson)

Karl-Anthony Towns shut down the Knicks with 23 points as New York dropped another road game, 118-108. 

Towns just missed a triple-double after recording 15 rebounds and nine assists. Andrew Wiggins dropped 16 points on 7-for-20 shooting while Taj Gibson worked the middle with 17 points on 8-of-11 from the field. 

Eight Wolves players finished with double-digit points, including Jimmy Butler (13), Jeff Teague (12), and Jamal Crawford (10)...

Tags: Jarrett Jack, Kristaps Porzingis
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Nov 8, 2017; Orlando, FL, USA; New York Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek talks with center Enes Kanter (00), forward Michael Beasley (8), guard Jarrett Jack (55) and guard Courtney Lee (5) (Kim Klement)
Nov 8, 2017; Orlando, FL, USA; New York Knicks head coach Jeff Hornacek talks with center Enes Kanter (00), forward Michael Beasley (8), guard Jarrett Jack (55) and guard Courtney Lee (5) (Kim Klement)

 MINNEAPOLIS -- After winning their third straight game, the Minnesota Timberwolves are 11 games above .500 for the first time in a long time.

Minnesota (27-16) enters Friday's game with the fourth-best record in the Western Conference, and Timberwolves fans are taking note. Wednesday's win over Oklahoma City was a sellout, Minnesota's fifth in a row at Target Center.

Now the Wolves are hoping for another packed building Friday -- but, more importantly, another win. >> Read more

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Daily News Live: Knicks 00:03:27
The DNL panel debates whether Tim Hardaway Jr.'s return from injury will save the Knicks' season and relieve some pressure off of Porzingis.

Dec 27, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) is defended by Chicago Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen (24) during the first quarter at United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports (David Banks)
Dec 27, 2017; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) is defended by Chicago Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen (24) during the first quarter at United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports (David Banks)

Jake Brown | Twitter | It's halfway through the Knicks season and their unicorn has talked about being very tired. Kristaps Porzingis has missed six games this season, after missing 16 last season, and 10 in his rookie season. That comes out to 32 games out of 205, which is around 15 percent of games missed.

The Knicks star was tremendous at the start of the season, where he looked like a legit MVP candidate. Then injuries and illnesses of different varieties went down, and things changed. Porzingis missed games, he played hurt, he took a lot of hits, and his numbers declined rapidly. There have been nights he hasn't showed up at all (the one-point effort against the Celtics), and there's been nights he has not shot well.

Porzingis is only 22 years old and has plenty of room to grow, but there have been the highs with KP and there have been lows. Jeff Hornacek and the Knicks are going to have to find a way to keep Porzingis fresh if they want to make a run for the playoffs, because he's only going to get more tired as he plays more games. Here's what can be done...

Tags: Joakim Noah, Kristaps Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr., Willy Hernangomez, Jake Brown
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GEICO Sportsnite: Knicks prep 00:01:35
The New York Knicks prepare to take on the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night and believe Tim Hardaway Jr. is close to returning.

The New York Knicks prepare to take on the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night and believe Tim Hardaway Jr. is close to returning.


As a call-up to the Knicks seems likelier and likelier, Trey Burke feels he's ready for his next chance. 

Burke played his first four professional seasons in the NBA and failed to live up to the expectations of being the 9th overall pick in the 2013 Draft. This offseason, he signed with the Knicks and has played in G-League all season. Burke believes he's matured since the last time he was on an NBA court.

"That Trey Burke -- there was a lot of distractions going on with that Trey Burke. That Trey Burke was 19 years old," Burke told James Herbert of CBS Sports. "This Trey Burke now, I'm married, I'm in the house, I'm not worried about things that a lot of players worry about..." 

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Dec 22, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Knicks forward Doug McDermott (20) against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Dec 22, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; New York Knicks forward Doug McDermott (20) against the Detroit Pistons at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Chris Mullin and Patrick Ewing were back coaching their respective Big East squads -- St. John's and Georgetown -- at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night. But it is another Big East coach who might well be the Knicks' biggest fan at this stage.

Creighton coach Greg McDermott has a vested interest in the Knicks because his son Doug is a valuable bench player for the team.

Greg, whose Bluejays are currently No. 25 in the nation and sit atop the Big East standings, watches as many Knicks games as he can on the NBA app and on TV.

"[Doug] is really enjoying New York City and likes being part of the Knicks," Greg said...

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Knicks' struggles continue 00:03:21
The DNL panel breaks down the Knicks' 122-119 loss to the Bulls in double OT and question if we have already seen the best from them.

The DNL panel breaks down the Knicks' 122-119 loss to the Bulls in double OT and question if we have already seen the best from them.


New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. reacts during the second half against the Toronto Raptors at Madison Square Garden. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Knicks forward Tim Hardaway Jr. reacts during the second half against the Toronto Raptors at Madison Square Garden. (Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports)

Knicks SG Tim Hardaway, Jr. (stress injury, leg) practiced again on Thursday and is listed as questionable for Friday's game against the Timberwolves in Minnesota.

Hardaway, who has been out since Nov. 29, said that if it was the playoffs he would "obviously" already be playing.

"I feel good, I feel good," Hardaway said, according to SNY contributor Adam Zagoria. "Like I said the beginning of the week, just progressing, getting better each and every day, getting the wind and everything back up. It was great playing with the guys today."

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

After another close game slipped away from the Knicks, head coach Jeff Hornacek knows his squad needs to get better at finishing games. 

It has been a common theme for New York all season: The games are close in the fourth quarter, but in the end, the other team walks away with the victory. The same can be said about last night as the 15-27 Bulls came to Madison Square Garden, and stole a win from the Knicks. 

The Knicks got off to a hot start, which has also been a theme, as an 11-point lead came their way early in the first. However, they found themselves just forcing the first overtime late in the fourth quarter. After fighting to force a second overtime, Jarrett Jack, who had a triple-double, couldn't hit a three-pointer to keep the game going...

Tags: Jarrett Jack, Kristaps Porzingis
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New York Knicks guard Jarrett Jack reacts after throwing the ball out of bounds during the overtime of an NBA basketball game against the Chicago Bulls Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018, at Madison Square Garden in New York.The Bulls won 122-119 in double overtime. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)
New York Knicks guard Jarrett Jack reacts after throwing the ball out of bounds during the overtime of an NBA basketball game against the Chicago Bulls Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018, at Madison Square Garden in New York.The Bulls won 122-119 in double overtime. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun) (Bill Kostroun/AP)

Knicks PG Jarrett Jack wasn't worried about his box score yesterday despite it reading a triple-double. 

Instead, Jack was fixed on the scoreboard at the end of the Knicks' 122-119 loss in double overtime. It was another overtime loss for the Knicks, which is why Jack believes he needed to give more to his team, no matter the numbers he put up. 

"Yeah, a triple-double is cool, but we lost. That's just the way I look at things," Jack told NY Daily News' Peter Botte. "I look at things in terms of wins and losses. I've got to go out there and do more, whatever it is…Everybody has to step it up one more notch, that's what it's going to take to get to where we want to go."

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GEICO SportsNite: Knicks' loss 00:01:20
Jeff Hornacek, Kristaps Porzingis and Jarrett Jack discuss their devastating 122-119 loss in double overtime at the hands of the Bulls.

NEW YORK (AP) Rookie Lauri Markkanen scored a season-high 33 points, Kris Dunn shook off a nightmarish shooting night to make the tiebreaking basket in the second overtime, and the Chicago Bulls beat the New York Knicks 122-119 on Wednesday night.

Dunn had missed 14 of his first 17 shots before banking in a runner with just under a minute left in the second extra period, and Markkanen finished it off by making two free throws with 6.8 seconds remaining. >> Read more

Tags: Jarrett Jack, Kristaps Porzingis
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Dec 14, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Knicks small forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) reacts during the third quarter against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Dec 14, 2017; Brooklyn, NY, USA; New York Knicks small forward Tim Hardaway Jr. (3) reacts during the third quarter against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Knicks coach Jeff Hornaceck said prior to Wednesday's game with the Bulls that it's possible injured guard Tim Hardaway Jr. could return this weekend.

The 25-year-old was averaging 17.8 points per game after signing a four-year, $71 million contract prior to this season, but he has not played since Nov. 29 due to a stress injury to his left leg. He missed his 20th consecutive game on Wednesday night. New York has gone 8-11 in his absence.

"We'll see tomorrow how Tim is," Hornacek said. "We'll practice. He's been going on all the trips. So we'll see."

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Jan 7, 2018; Dallas, TX, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) defends against Dallas Mavericks guard Dennis Smith Jr. (1) during the second half at the American Airlines Center. The Knicks defeat the Mavericks 100-96. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports (Jerome Miron)
Jan 7, 2018; Dallas, TX, USA; New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis (6) defends against Dallas Mavericks guard Dennis Smith Jr. (1) during the second half at the American Airlines Center. The Knicks defeat the Mavericks 100-96. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports (Jerome Miron)

NEW YORK -- Just 2-7 in their last nine games -- but coming off a 100-96 win at Dallas on Monday that stopped a three-game losing streak -- the New York Knicks welcome the Chicago Bulls to Madison Square Garden on Wednesday in their first matchup this season.

Like the Knicks, the Bulls have been in a funk in recent weeks, losers of five of six, with their lone win coming over cellar-dwelling Dallas, as well. >> Read more

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