The Knicks still have 42 games to go, so it seems way too early to call any game a “must-win” at this point. But, as mid-January games go, Monday’s matchup against Brooklyn feels pretty important. Why?Because Mike Woodson and the Knicks hope to turn things around over the next six games, starting with Monday’s matinee against the Nets. The Knicks’ next six games are at home against teams that are at least six games under .
With the season now halfway in the books, there’s three things that can be safely gleaned from a look at the NBA standings:
Golden State’s schedule does not have much of a letup, and Andre Iguodala’s hamstring injury and Andrew Bogut’s reduced playing time are reasons for concern.
Channing Frye scored a season-high 30 points before sitting out the final 9½ minutes to watch the Phoenix Suns wrap up a 117-103 victory over the Denver Nuggets on Sunday night.
Sacramento coach Michael Malone said Kevin Durant wouldn’t score 54 points against his Kings like he did against Golden State two nights earlier.
The Orlando Magic defeated Boston on Sunday to end a season-high losing streak at 10 games.
Patty Mills had 20 points, Tim Duncan had 11 points and 13 rebounds in limited action, and the San Antonio Spurs rolled to a 110-82 victory over Milwaukee on Sunday night that kept the Bucks winless in the new year.
Arron Afflalo had 20 points and 13 rebounds, Tobias Harris added 18 points and the Orlando Magic snapped a season-high 10-game losing streak with a 93-91 win over the Boston Celtics on Sunday night.
The Knicks are no strangers to the waste of minutes at the end of blowouts — unfortunately for them, they are the ones being trashed.
Heading into Monday’s game at Madison Square Garden, the Nets have gone 11-8 since an ugly 113-83 loss to the visiting Knicks on Dec. 5.
The Knicks and the Nets were supposed to compete for basketball supremacy in New York this season, and they are separated by just two games in the standings — with Brooklyn ahead — entering their MLK Day matinee Monday at the Garden. But as Carmelo Anthony noted, few would have expected the two locals to sport a combined record of 31-47 as the midway point of the season approaches.
Deron Williams returns to the Nets on Monday. The Knicks get Pablo Prigioni back. Advantage, Brooklyn. Although he’s an absentee owner, Mikhail Prokhorov always has interesting stuff to say about his Nets when he finds the time to be with his team.