[sny-box color="fff"] In Case You Missed It...
Carmelo Anthony tied a career high and scored his most in a Knicks uniform with 50 points tonight. He shot 18-26 from the field including 7-10 from three point range. He added two rebounds, two assists, one block and one steal.
J.R. Smith scored 14 points off the bench on 5-15 shooting from the floor. He was tied with Kenyon Martin for the team lead in rebounds with six.
Lebron James, Dwayne Wade and Mario Chalmers did not play tonight for the Heat. Chris Bosh led the team in scoring with 23 points on 6-13 from the floor and 10-10 from the free throw line. Mike Miller added 18 points and eight rebounds.
Tyson Chandler returned from a bulging disc in his neck and played 24 minutes going 0-2 from the field for one point. He had two blocks and two rebounds.
The Knicks made 14 three pointers, shooting 52% and forced the Heat into 19 turnovers.
Jamal Crawford was the last player for the Knicks to score 50+ points in a game, which was against the Heat in 2007.
The Knicks outscored the Heat 52-32 after trailing 58-50 at halftime.
The Knicks win the season series over the Heat 3-1 and won both games played in Miami.
The Knicks are now 21 games over .500 for the first time since February 12th, 1997 when they beat the Washington Bullets 97-92 to go 35-14.
This nine game winning streak is the longest streak for the Knicks since they won 15 games in a row in March-April of 1994.
The Magic number for the Knicks to clinch the Atlantic Division is down to 5 (A combination of Knicks wins and Nets losses).
In the pre-game I asked two questions that, as we reached halftime, I was proud about and I was feeling pretty stupid about.
The questions that I'm referring to are as follows.
Did anyone else know that Mike Miller was still playing in the NBA? and Is Udonis Haslem having cold sweats thinking about attempting to guard Melo?
Well I think in the first half, Mike Miller not only let me know he was still in the NBA, but, he let the entire world know he can still play this game. Of course in the second half, he went back into the witness protection program, not to be heard from again until playoff time.
Then we go to the next question and I must say that Udonis Haslem will be having a tough time getting to sleep with Carmelo Anthony's performance burned into his memory.
With Lebron and Wade taking another game off to prepare for their title defense, the Heat played pretty poor defense on Melo tonight.
The rest of the Knicks only combined for 52 points for the game and generally looked lost for the entire first half. Thankfully for them, they have Carmelo Anthony. He was the savior that kept them in the game in the first half and helped put it away in the second half.
Melo was on fire and was in the "zone" for most of the game and really saved the Knicks from what would have been a tough loss. This is what superstars have to do sometimes. They have to put a team on their back and carry them to a win. He did that tonight and did it with authority.
The Knicks, in the first half, basically thought that if they just showed up and played with little effort the Heat, without their two superstars, would just allow them to run away with it.
That was not the case and Miami was up eight and feeling very confident at the Half. In the locker room, you have to think that defense and getting it improved was most likely a talking point for Mike Woodson and his staff.
Once the Knicks got the wake up call at halftime and realized the Heat were not going to just give them the game, they stepped up and took it away. The defensive rotations were better, the close outs were better and Miami turned the ball over a bunch which helped the Knicks make the comeback.
This is a win that proved that when the Knicks don't show up to play, they can lose to anyone at any time. If it wasn't for Anthony, they lose this game. But, they did not lose. They got it together in the second half, got the game back in their control and eventually put it away.
This was a game played in two halves and I think is a learning tool for this team as we get closer to the playoffs. You saw what this team looks like when its sloppy and you saw what its like when it is focused.
If the Knicks keep up the focus we saw in the second half, the Heat, even with James and Wade could have some trouble in May.
Coming up next the Knicks head a bit north to the birthplace of Walt "Clyde" Frazier as they will take on Josh Smith, Al Horford and the Atlanta Hawks. The game is on Wednesday at 7:00 pm and can be seen on MSG.