Recap: The Knicks couldn’t recover from a poor start Tuesday as their home losing streak reached six.
Need to Know: Derek Fisher pulled all five Knicks starters after Dallas jumped out to a 29-13 lead with 4:44 left in the first quarter. The Knicks kept it competitive until the fourth quarter, when the Mavs pulled away.
Dallas won it from beyond the arc, where they were 15-for-33. The Knicks were just 5-for-21.
It was the Knicks’ worst loss in the home losing streak. The previous five were decided by seven or fewer.
Before Tuesday, New York was averaging just 91.3 points at home, the lowest average in the NBA.
The Mavs’ Tyson Chandler had eight points and 14 rebounds in his return to the Garden.
J.R. Smith (foot) did not dress.
Links: AP recap | Box Score
What’s next: The Knicks visit Chicago to face the Bulls Thursday at 8 p.m. To read more of this story, click here
Keith Schlosser, Lead Writer
Two months ago, Travis Wear
was going through the motions at NBA training camp, otherwise expecting to be waived by the Knicks and subsequently suit up for their D-League affiliate in Westchester.
Everyone else was widely expecting this, too.
But as many of New York’s players struggled to find their way in the new triangle offense (following a 4-13 start to the campaign, it’s safe to say many still are), Wear surprisingly emerged with an understanding for the system. He can spread the floor effectively and create problems for opposing defenses. At 6’10” and 225 pounds, he still has the prowess necessary to knock down the corner midrange jumper in transition with ease.
Since playing defensive stopper to LeBron James in arguably the Knicks’ most impressive victory this season last month, Wear has appeared in games rather sporadically, but somehow always manages to make a positive impact along the way. He’s proven to be a more than capable defender, and his offensive ability speaks for itself. He’s a good fit in the triangle. Perhaps the most staggering proof came on Friday night, when the forward stood as the only Knickerbocker with a positive plus/minus during the Thunder’s romp of New York. Wear owned a +11 in 15 minutes of play.
The question is, how long will such success last? Will it be short-lived, or will Wear continue to carve out a role for himself in this team’s rotation? When will opposing teams discover the book on the young gun?
When opponents eventually figure Wear out (and subsequently cover him and close off the passing lanes), it’ll be interesting to see how, or if, he adjusts. Can he prove to be more than simply a one-dimensional player?
That remains to be seen. But as Carmelo Anthony fights off the injury bug and the Knicks’ struggles continue, it’s clear the team is in desperate need of some help on the offensive end. And while that’s likely to come in the form of players like Amar’e Stoudemire, J.R. Smith, and Tim Hardaway Jr. eventually stepping up and finding their respective ways, it’s worth noting that a player like Wear is obviously occupying a spot that could go to someone else with more to offer.
Now of course, the fifteenth man on a team’s roster isn’t likely to make any world-shattering impact. Whoever takes up that spot shouldn’t be considered a savior of sorts. Having said that, the Knicks could clearly use help in any form they can get it at this point.
Wear has been extremely solid this season, so it’ll be interesting to see if he continues to perform. But in the meantime as he aims to prove his worth even more, there will assumedly be other players attempting to break the door down and steal his spot along the way.
Take Orlando Sanchez, a fellow 2014-15 Knicks’ training camp invitee, for example. The St. John’s alum turned in one of the better performances by a D-League big man (this season) just last week against the Los Angeles D-Fenders. He scored 23 points on 9 of 13 shooting from the field, grabbed eight rebounds and added three blocks.
As camp began, New York brass believed Sanchez could be a steady fit in the triangle. He’s athletic, lengthy, versatile on the offensive end, but perhaps most importantly, can run the ball up the floor and find his teammates in transition. That’s quite an impressive attribute for a 6’9″ forward to have.
The minor leaguer is continuing to develop his game and gain more confidence in Westchester. He may not have as consistent of a midrange jumper as Wear, but Sanchez stands to be a more versatile player moving forward.
Is a player like Sanchez the answer to all of the Knicks’ prayers? Probably not, but neither is Wear. As the team continues to search for potential solutions to their problems, it’s worth noting that perhaps Wear is in a vulnerable spot, nonetheless. It’ll be interesting to see how he can continues to respond to the pressure.
Carmelo Anthony has been ruled out for tonight’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Head coach Derek Fisher said Anthony is making progress and would not rule him out for Sunday’s game against Miami. (Berman, Nov. 28)
Thunder head coach Scott Brooks announced Russell Westbrook will be in the starting lineup. Westbook has been out since suffering a fracture in his hand during the second game of the season.
There were suspicions that Kevin Durant would make his season debut tonight but he has been ruled out as well.
Recap: The Knicks lost to Toronto Monday in their first preseason game at Madison Square Garden.
Need to Know: J.R. Smith (10 points) was the only Knick in double figures as Derek Fisher used 14 players.
Quincy Acy started over Amar’e Stoudemire, but Fisher said “it’s not related to anything Amar’e hasn’t done or hasn’t shown.”
The Knicks shot 3-for-23 from three, and 37.8 percent (31-for-82 overall).
Andrea Bargnani (hamstring) sat out again.
Links: AP recap | Box Score
What’s Next: Carmelo Anthony returns to Syracuse Tuesday as the Knicks meet Philadelphia at 7 p.m. at the Carrier Dome.
This game had a weird feel from the start to me. There was an overall lack of energy but amazingly shots were falling everywhere. Lazy Sunday afternoon start.
But by the time it was finished this was one of the best wins of the season. Very chippy, teams battling for positioning and just playing hard.
Without Tyson Chandler you expect the Knicks to play with more pace and they did. There was a ton of isos and Carmelo doing his thing. What was encouraging was Stoudemire who looks relatively healthy… and hungry.
There will be a lot of talk about Melo and him not getting calls. I don’t know what the deal is with that and even Doris Burke was flabbergasted. It is what it is. You have to play through that stuff and rise above.
The Knicks were very good today and that’s encouraging after what was a night off in Cleveland last night.
What a whirlwind few days especially for New York City basketball the epicenter of the Mike D’Antoni situation and the future landing of one Dwight Howard.
Let’s all take a breath.
Make no mistake, there was a time Howard wanted Brooklyn. He wanted out of Orlando. But as Jarrod Rudolph reported in an exclusive one on one interview with Howard that broke last night, Howard had a change of heart and is staying another year in O Town.
Why his agent would allow him to risk another year of not hitting his final major guaranteed contract is a mystery, but that gives major credence to the fact that this was Howard’s decision and one that deserves respect.
But I’m trying to connect the dots as it relates to the reports that Mike D’Antoni requested a Melo for D-Will trade considering that from what I’m gathering Howard was still ultimately deciding his next move yesterday. But it would seem that Knicks intel was sure of Howard’s steps and thus exploring a deal for the Nets PG.
On the coaching front, the Jackson stuff will be hot and heavy and here’s another nugget as it relates to a name that Knicks fans will be hearing about for sure over the next few weeks.
A source close to John Calipari has informed me that as of right now the Kentucky coach has zero interest in leaving Lexington even for a higher paycheck. The source indicated that Calipari is telling his inner circle that he’s committed to Kentucky and that he’s already well secured financially.
Will that change if they win the big dance? Good question.
What a whirlwind few days and, oh wait, isn’t today the trade deadline???