Five Takeaways: Knicks Stay Alive In Game 5

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3. J.R. Smith returns to form


In Game 5, Smith found some of the shooting rhythm that made him the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year. He got off to a roaring start by burying his first shot, a contested three out of the corner, in typical Smith fashion.

For Smith, establishing an early rhythm and confidence were very important. He didn't settle for many jump shots, instead opting to attack the rim in the pick-and-roll game. Give credit to both Smith and Coach Woodson for finding ways to get the guard attacking offensively in other ways than just isolation or spot up situations. The Knicks need the 6MOY to play as such from here on out if they want to claw their way to a series victory.

Photo By George Kalinsky for Madison Square Garden