By Charlie Widdoes (Twitter)
KNICKS , PISTONS | MADISON SQUARE GARDEN
How it Happened:
After building momentum on a winning swing through the teeth of Texas, the Knicks returned home to Madison Square Garden determined to give the home fans a sign that this level of play would be here to stay.
With a showdown against the Miami Heat looming on Thursday, they managed to take care of business against the Detroit Pistons, producing the fifth home win of the season and giving reason to believe that this season is heading in the right direction.
The first half was a grind, with both teams shooting below 40 percent from the floor, but New York came out of the break with the type of energy and effort that got the home crowd going. In a flash, the Knicks had gone on a 13-0 run, fueled by three consecutive Carmelo Anthony 3-pointers and a dunk.
As the Pistons fought back, the Knicks had answers. Up 83-80 with 2:11 to play, Melo drained a huge three from the left wing, followed by an emphatic block by Kenyon Martin on Andre Drummond.
The final minutes went back and forth, but the Knicks never relinquished the lead. Raymond Felton made the first of two free throws with six seconds left and the Knicks up one, but when the second bounced off the rim, Anthony was there to secure the offensive rebound. Detroit would foul and Melo put the game away by sinking two from the line.
It was a spirited win, one that Coach Woodson and his team can build on going forward.
Knick of the Night:
Anthony was the man tonight, spurring the decisive rally in the 3rd quarter and coming up with big plays down the stretch. His 34 points were a game high.
The defending-champion Heat come to the Garden on Thursday for a primtetime affair.