Post Game: Knicks 102, Cavaliers 97

On Monday Night, at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, the Knicks (36-21) defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers (20-40) 102-97. Box Score

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Amar’e Stoudemire led the Knicks in scoring tonight with 22 points on 10-15 shooting from the floor. He added six rebounds, two assists and one block. He also played a season high 32 minutes.

Carmelo Anthony left the game in a second quarter with a knee injury and did not return to the game. He scored six points on 1-5 shooting was -15 and had three turnovers.’

J.R. Smith scored 18 points off the bench on 6-17 shooting from the floor. He was only 1-7 from three but had seven rebounds and seven assists and one steal.

Marreese Speights led the Cavaliers in scoring with 23 points, scoring 21 points in the first half. Kyrie Irving scored 22 points on 9-20 shooting from the floor and had five rebounds and six assists.

Steve Novak was 4-7 from three scoring 15 points while Jason Kidd was 3-5 from downtown scoring 12 points to go along with eight rebounds and three steals.

Luke Walton had a game high 12 assists. That’s crazy.

Raymond Felton scored eight points and led the team with 10 assists.

The Knicks shot 40% from three (12-30) while the Cavs were only 6-20 from downtown for 30%

The Knicks bench outscored the Cavs bench 70-21

The Knicks trailed 52-30 with 6:12 remaining in the second quarter and outscored the Cavs 72-45 the rest of the game.

The Cavs began the game shooting 81% from the floor (22-27) but finished the game shooting 32% (15-46) and shot 50% for the whole game.

The Cavs scored 36 points in the second half while the Knicks scored 32 points in the fourth quarter.

This was the Knicks first win in Cleveland since 2006, ending a 10 game losing streak.

This was the largest comeback win for the Knicks since a 26 point comeback against the Milwaukee Bucks in 2004.

Matthew Falkenbury

Everyone’s favorite beat writer, mostly tweeting sarcastic and ridiculous things about the Knicks or Hollywood or his man crush on Mario Ballotelli during the game, must have been on to something while watching the game tonight.

The Knicks in the first half came out with as much energy and effort as the zombies have on The Walking Dead and allowed the Cavs to go ’85 Villanova on them to begin the game.

Then Carmelo Anthony, in a play, that looked a lot like something a Jets or Mets player would do, tripped over his own feet, left the court and never came back as he injured his knee.

It was looking gruesome out there. Like the Indiana game after the All-Star break bad. I was actually trying to think of a clever video to use for “Knicks Blowout Theatre” and then something funny happened on the way to the Cavs win.

The Law of Averages kicked in, the Knicks defense got better and the game turned around. Now the Cavs were looking like a team that is 20 games under .500, turning the ball over, playing poor defense and allowing the Knicks to attack the rim.

With Melo out, the Knicks needed to find another option and the bench was more than happy to collectively pick up the load.

Stoudemire turned back the clock to 2010 and was going to the rim with authority. J.R. Smith, still horrid from three, did a nice job from inside the arc. Novak was actually relevant on the court, knocking down four three pointers and Jason Kidd was playing like it was November again doing everything, including scoring.

While Kyrie Irving was good, and was starting to pick up as the fourth quarter wound down, he did not kill the Knicks like other guards have recently. His game reminded me of Jrue Holliday’s in the last 76ers-Knicks game, he was good but the rest of the team went missing for too long to get the Cavs the win.

This was one of those games against a bad team that it took the Knicks to put in a maximum effort to win. This is the NBA and no team, even one as bad as the Cavs should blow a 22 point lead at home. This, when you consider all the things going against them to start the game, was a nice comeback win for the Knicks.

No Melo, on the road and playing the second game of a back to back, the Knicks had plenty of reasons to blow this game off and wait till Wednesday against the Pistons. But they did not, they went out there, played much harder in the second half and got the win.

Coming up next the Knicks are off to the Motor City for the first time this season as they will take on Greg Monroe, Brandon Knight and the Detroit Pistons. The game will be on Wednesday at 7:30 pm and can be seen on MSG.