Hornets 89, Knicks 85
|Amare Stoudemire, PF 39 MIN | 12-21 FG | 2-3 FT | 12 REB | 0 AST | 26 PTS | +5
Did you know that Stoudemire is actually Hebrew for “Mardi Gras Ruiner”? Someone had to be energized by NOLA’s jerseys. Who better than Stat – still working past tragedy and into game shape – to go all Jagermeister on the hapless Hornets with a display of vicious dunks, deft drives, and overall rowdy play?
Now look at his grade. Notice a disconnect? That’s because Amar’e Stoudemire plays defense how I wash dishes: Not well.
|Bill Walker, SG 26 MIN | 1-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 2 PTS | -4
You know you’re not taking home an Oscar when your first shot – a three pointer from the corner, no less – ends with a concession attendant being knocked unconscious. Walker was virtually invisible in this one, which is probably better than a visible Bill Walker putting up that kind of stat line.
Fun Fact: Starting Sunday, Carmelo Anthony will be playing this basketball position.
|Tyson Chandler, C 35 MIN | 3-4 FG | 4-8 FT | 11 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | -12
Playing opposite Chris Kaman would probably frighten me, too – the widow’s peak, utterly frightening Nordic frame, and deceptive jumper are enough to make most men quake in their Converse. Chander and Stat failed to communicate on a number of low post screens, resulting in a bevy of easy baskets where no blood was shed.
|Landry Fields, G 34 MIN | 1-8 FG | 2-4 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 4 PTS | -18
HOOOOOOOOLLLY shit. Like the Knicks’ improbable run, Landry’s resurgence had to be tempered at some point. We just didn’t think it would be, like, this bad. The late foul on a trapped and helpless Marco Belinelli was just the worst. Ditto the late three point attempt that barely grazed the rim – taken with enough space between he and defender to park a Greyhound. Good thing he’ll be walking back into his apartment to find hookers fighting over the couch.
|Jeremy Lin, PG 40 MIN | 8-18 FG | 8-10 FT | 2 REB | 5 AST | 26 PTS | -8
Welp, we figured it out: Wear jerseys outlawed in more than a dozen countries, slay Linsanity. His basketball shooting ability was noticeably more confident and encouraging tonight. But the turnovers? Jay-zus! Yeah, the four steals kinda-sorta made up for them, but not really. I don’t know if Lin’s telegraphing the passes, or just sending texts — either way, he’s being way too sloppy with the ball, particularly in the paint.
|Jared Jeffries, PF 22 MIN | 1-1 FG | 1-2 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 3 PTS | +1
Of this I am convinced: At various points during games, Dan D’Antoni sneaks over to the opponents’ bench during timeouts – he’s wearing ball boy camouflage, you see… just work with me – and hangs strings of venison from each of the opponents’ shorts. Here’s the thing: Jared Jeffries LOOOOOOOOVES venison. That’s why he does things like grab three steals, take two charges, and near single-handedly keep the game within striking distance for the Knicks. He also apparently has an egg-sized wound over his left eye.
|Steve Novak, SF 20 MIN | 2-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 5 PTS | +13
The first half was like watching Robin Hood try to hit a bull’s eye after six flagons of mead. The second half was like watching Robin Hood try to hit a bull’s eye after a six mead flagon hangover. Off night aside, I’m pretty sure this guy will hit some big shots down the stretch. Just a prediction.
|Iman Shumpert, G 26 MIN | 3-9 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 9 PTS | +3
Mark my words: Iman Shumpert will win Dancing With the Stars at some point between 2027 and 2090. Dude just thinks way too much about his moves — on offense, anyway. As per usual, Shumpert was all up in a brother’s shit on defense, often to the detriment of said team effort. A pretty bad game, on the whole, but hopefully an outlier going forward.
Five Things We Saw
- The next time David Stern gathers his Board of Ghouls or whatever, outlawing jerseys that are purple on the front, green on the back, and yellow everywhere else, needs to be high on the list of rule change priorities. My wife spent hours scrubbing eye blood out of the carpet. Inexcusable.
- Normally, teams would to go out and get blitzed after a Friday game. But those jerseys, man, they worked. It’s like the Knicks saw them during warm ups, thought New York City was hosting Mardi Gras, and everyone just casually sipped Gatorade cups half-filled with Five O’Clock Gin on the bench for the next two hours.
- Ten minutes in, I almost flipped over to the Michigan State-Wisconsin game, just to see some exciting basketball… Ok, that game actually happened last night, and I’d never in good conscious watch a Big Ten game during a Knick game, unless I wanted pure violence. The second half picked up somewhat, but the Hornets clearly had the better energy, being patient on offense, finding the open man, and locking down nobly on D.
- Back in high school, we had to run 65s every time we committed a turnover. You know what a 65 is? Running baseline-to-baseline 5 times in 65 seconds. Not as easy as it sounds…. Anyway, if Coach Schluter had his way, the Knicks would be spending most of tomorrow afternoon vomiting onto fruit platters.
- Having been deprived Mike and Clyde during for night’s blowout, my brain wasn’t in the mood to process three broadcast commentators. Mike and Clyde is one thing. Mike, Clyde, and Bernard!?!? Too much, man, you took too much, too much! Granted, The King’s cameo gave me an opportunity to tell my wife about how Bernard King was awesome once. Me: “He holds the all-time record for points in one game by a Knick with 60.” Wife: “That’s not as good as Wilt.”
Beyond his work for KnickerBlogger, Jim is a contributor to the New York Times Off the Dribble NBA blog, ESPN.com, and The Classical. He is currently working on a biography of Robert Silverman, titled "Clownin' and Astoundin.'" Follow him on Twitter @JPCavan.