The Knicks secured a gutsy win last night against Milwaukee without Amar’e and Jeremy, though it was far from pretty. They knew this was a must win game and they executed. Defensive intensity was pretty consistent all game, despite the fact that Mike Dunleavy (after 2 standout performances against the Knicks, can we nickname him the new “Knicks Killer”?) went off against them scoring 24 points in 13 minutes by halftime. Rebounding was sensational last night as the Knicks secured 54 of them, ironically without Amar’e. Perhaps, some of the smaller guys are realizing that they have to step up their rebounding with one of their big men out indefinitely. However, turnovers are still an issue that continues to plague the Knicks (23 last night, 9 coming from Baron Davis) and shooting percentage was poor, so there is still much work to be done. I think Melo must have read my post yesterday as he started off the game hot making a quick 3 field goals with confidence, showing resemblance to the Melo we all know and love. He cooled off a bit for the rest of the game, scoring baskets here and there but still grabbed 12 rebounds and shot 100% from the line. His effort is clearly apparent and he wants to get better, but it looks like he tweaked his groin yet again so we will have to wait and see if that sets him back. Lastly, the Knicks shot 86% from the line on 35 attempts! That’s definitely something that will make their lives a lot easier to finish the season strong.
With one more game vs Milwaukee in April, the Knicks have a chance to win the head to head series against them and beat them out of the playoffs if it does come down to a tiebreak.
Knicks vs Magic on Wednesday night will be an interesting game to see how the Knicks will fare against a post-dominant team without Amar’e and Jeffries in their lineup. Chandler will probably get into foul trouble so young Josh Harrellson will have to fill in and hold his ground against one of the league’s most dominant centers.