Knicks Morning News (Friday, Apr 27 2012)
The Knicks are heading to Miami for a first-round playoff series with the Heat after wrapping up the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference with a rout of the Bobcats.
With the regular season coming to an end on Thursday, many of the top teams rested their regulars for the N.B.A. playoffs, which begin Saturday.
With Michael Jordan as the face of the franchise, Charlotte has the poorest record in the N.B.A. and entered its final game threatening the record for worst winning percentage.
Chris Bosh recently peered down the hallway that links the Miami Heat locker room and the team’s home court.
The Chicago Bulls closed out the regular season with a 107-75 demolition of the Cleveland Cavaliers to claim the number one overall seed on Thursday for the National Basketball Association playoffs.
Patty Mills had career highs of 34 points and 12 assists, DeJuan Blair added 22 points and 13 rebounds, and the short-handed San Antonio Spurs beat the Golden State Warriors 107-101 on Thursday night.
DeMarcus Cousins had 23 points and 19 rebounds, Tyreke Evans scored 17 points and the Sacramento Kings beat the Los Angeles Lakers’ backups 113-96 Thursday night in the regular-season finale for both teams.
The worst season in NBA history is over for the Charlotte Bobcats.
Marc Gasol scored 22 points, Rudy Gay added 20 and the Memphis Grizzlies claimed the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference playoffs with an 88-76 win over the short-handed Orlando Magic on Thursday night.
Rookie Alec Burks scored 18 points and NBA Slam Dunk champ Jeremy Evans led a 10-0 fourth-quarter run as the playoff-bound Utah Jazz beat the Portland Trail Blazers 96-94 Thursday night.
Chase Budinger scored a season-high 27 points and Marcus Morris hit the go-ahead 3-pointer to lift the Houston Rockets to an 84-77 victory over the New Orleans Hornets on Thursday night in the season finale for both teams.
Ben Gordon scored 26 points, including eight 3-pointers, to help the Detroit Pistons rout the short-handed Philadelphia 76ers 108-86 Thursday night in the season finale.
Playing without their Big Three, the Miami Heat suffered their worst defeat of 2011-2012 with a 104-70 loss to the Washington Wizards in the regular-season finale Thursday night.
Josh Smith scored 23 points and the Atlanta Hawks clinched home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs, racing to a 23-point lead in the opening quarter on the way to a 106-89 victory over the Dallas Mavericks in the regular-season finale Thursday night.
John Lucas III scored a career-high 25 points, Joakim Noah had 13 points and 13 rebounds, and the Chicago Bulls clinched the top overall seed in the NBA playoffs with a 107-75 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night.
It works with Ray Allen in Boston. Would Amar’e Stoudemire of the Knicks be more effective coming off the bench in the playoffs?
The Chicago Bulls will open the postseason Saturday against Philadelphia, just before Miami and New York renew their playoff rivalry.
Paul Pierce scored all 12 of his points in the first half despite missing most of it with a sprained toe and Rajon Rondo had 15 assists as the Boston Celtics closed the regular season with an 87-74 win over the Milwaukee Bucks on Thursday night.
JaVale McGee scored 19 points to help the Denver Nuggets lock down the sixth seed in the Western Conference playoffs with a 131-102 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Thursday night.
Ben Uzoh had 12 points, a career-high 12 assists and 11 rebounds for his first career triple-double, and the Toronto Raptors routed New Jersey 98-67 in Thursday night’s season finale, a loss that slightly improves the Nets’ chances in the NBA draft lottery.
The seventh-seeded Knicks and second-seeded Heat are set for their Eastern Conference playoff showdown. Miami swept the season series, 3-0, though the Knicks didn’t play any of the games with Carmelo Anthony, Amar’e Stoudemire and interim coach Mike Woodson all together. Here’s a look back:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. â?? Look out Miami, here come the Knicks.
Oh yeah, the Heat is on!
The Miami Dream Team officially became their first-round opponent Thursday night, and the Knicks will begin this star-studded battle royale Saturday afternoon at what promises to be a deafening American Airlines Arena.
CHARLOTTE â?? LeBron James, in a cover story in Sports Illustrated this week, admits he wasn’t himself in his first year in Miami and vows to purge the demons during these playoffs that start with the Knicks tomorrow at American Airlines Arena.
“I lost touch with who I was as…
CHARLOTTE, N.C. â?? Knicks starting point guard Baron Davis was part of one of the great first-round upsets in NBA history when the No. 8 Warriors shocked No. 1 Dallas in 2007. That’s when Davis was in his prime and he had a spectacular series, carrying the Warriors on…
You won’t find many observers who give the Knicks a shot to take out LeBron James and the Heat in the first round.
And for good reason.
Miami dominated New York in the regular season, winning all three matchups by an average of 10 points. So the Knicks need to play near-flawless basketball to compete against the Heat in the playoffs.
Here’s a veteran scout’s take on five things New York needs to do to beat Miami:
FEED OFF OF MELO
Carmelo Anthony carried the Knicks late in the second half of the season.
Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. Fast and faster. The most dangerous fast-break attack in basketball.
That’s one of the main things on the minds of the Knicks heading into their first-round series against the Heat, starting Saturday in Miami (3:30 p.m. ET on ABC).
AP Photo/Chuck Burton
Amare Stoudemire looked good against the Bobcats on Thursday, and feels good about how the Knicks match up against the Heat.
“Miami’s a team that plays great getting turnovers, and they get out and run well,” said Amare Stoudemire after the Knicks beat the Bobcats on Thursday night 104-84 in both teams’ regular-season finale.
The Knicks – and where have we heard this before? – are headed to Miami to open the NBA Playoffs against LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and the Heat.
Baron Davis once led the Golden State Warriors to one of the biggest playoff upsets in NBA history, and the veteran point guard believes this Knicks team has the same qualities to shock either Miami or Chicago this year.
The Knicks' injury-riddled, turmoil-filled, lockout-condensed regular season, which featured a coaching change and Jeremy Lin becoming an international phenomenon, ended Thursday night.
Mike Woodson has said he's got to make it work between Carmelo Anthony and Amar'e Stoudemire, and you can add Tyson Chandler to the list.