By Charlie Widdoes (Twitter)
KNICKS 83, Bobcats 85 | Madison Square Garden
How it happened:
The Knicks led by double digits for most of the game, but the Bobcats slowly crept back before taking a two-point lead in the last minute and hanging on for the victory. It was a low scoring affair for both teams and a disappointing end to a the preseason for Mike Woodson's team, especially. All 12 of New York's regulars played in the final tune-up for the regular season, but they just weren't able to hold off the pesky Bobcats.
Welcome back, J.R. Smith and Amar'e Stoudemire! By far the most positive takeaway was the performance of these key Knicks in their returns from offseason knee surgeries. Smith, in particular, dazzled in 13 minutes, making 5-of-9 from the field -- including a few of his patented stepback jumpers -- to finish with 11 points. He also had the highlight of the night with this halfcourt buzzer beater. STAT turned in an efficient 3-of-4 perfromance in his 12 minutes.
Knick of the Night:
Iman Shumpert closed out his strong preseason with 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting, including four 3-pointers. He also added five rebounds. He, along with the rest of his teammates, tried to force some offense in the second half, but he flashed glimpses of the assertive scorer the Knicks have hoped he'd become.
After closing out the preseason with a 2-5 record, Woodson's group will hope to turn things around in Wednesday's season opener. They'll open up at home against Milwaukee.