The New York Knicks (29-27) fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers (11-47) by a score of 115-109 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Denver on Friday night. The loss was the Knicks tenth straight to the Cavaliers. The Cavaliers previously beat the Knicks on Dec. 18, and then lost 26 straight games until defeating the Boston Celtics on February 11th.
After the Melo-Drama that was Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden, the Knicks were unable to bring the same energy or enthusiasm Friday night. Also the same lack of flow to the offense plagued the lacking in chemistry Knicks.
Wednesday night, Carmelo Anthony dominated the shot chart by taking 25 shots from the field, but scoring just 27 points. Amare Stoudemire seemed as an afterthought with just 13 shots attempted from the floor.
Friday night however the shots were about equal with STAT and MELO taking 27 and 22 respectively. Carmelo Anthony finished the game with 27 points- 16 of which came in the first half, in which he went 6/10 from the field. MELO cooled considerably going just 3/12 from the field in the second half. STAT took 27 shots and put up 31 points, and yet is still seemed as if he was underutalized.
While watching this game, I saw no flow to this team. I saw a team that fouled Cleveland everytime down the court-allowing them to continue to shoot free throws and expand leads, as well as a selfish style of play. The Knicks of the first half of this season, including now Denver Nuggets’ Danilo Gallinari, Raymond Felton and Wilson Chandler, all seemed to make “the extra pass” to find the open or hot shooter. Friday night however, the Knicks lacked ball movement.
It seemed as if PG Chauncey Billups, who scored 26 points, was more interested in breaking down his own man than setting up his pal ‘Melo or his new rebound vacuum Amare Stoudamire. That being said, Billups did have 8 assists.
Whether it is the fault of D’Antoni, Billups, Stoudemire or Anthony, the Knicks need to get this offense to flow more smoothly if they have a chance to compete with Miami Sunday afternoon against the Heat.