KNICKS 112 HEAT 92 | AMERICAN AIRLINES ARENA
How it happened:
Fresh off an exhilarating victory over the Bobcats on Wednesday, the Knicks marched into Miami’s home arena and knocked off the defending champs for the second time this season. New York shocked the Heat 112-92 without its All-Star Carmelo Anthony in the lineup due to a laceration of the left middle finger.
In what might be their best third quarter of the season, the Knicks blasted out of the locker room with a barrage of 3-pointers. Tied at 53-53 at half, New York compiled an 11-2 run over the first 3 minutes of the third period behind the spectacular play of Felton. Despite obvious pain in his injured left hand, Felton scored 11 of his 27 points in the crucial quarter to ignite the Knicks offense.
New York built an 18-point lead, generated off terrific floor spacing and ball movement to find room for a combined eight long bombs in the period. In fact, the Knicks were blistering hot by hitting 8-of-13 attempts from downtown.
At one point, Steve Novak buried a 3-pointer to hand New York an 83-67 lead and chants of “Let’s Go New York” were heard loud and clear from the rafters at AmericanAirlines Arena. The Knicks seized control of the contest at this critical juncture of the contest and placed a level doubt in the defending champs’ heads. New York rattled Miami by outscoring the home squad 37-27 in the third frame and created enough momentum to carry over to the final stanza.
While LeBron James had his typical all-world performance (31 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists), New York controlled the rest of the Miami cast. The Knicks limited Dwyane Wade to just 13 points, Chris Bosh shot 3-of-12 from the floor, and Ray Allen did not hit a 3-pointer all night.
The Knicks are now 2-0 against the Heat this season without allowing them to reach the century mark in both contests. At 14-4, New York owns the best record in the Eastern Conference and are winners of five straight games.
“We played a great defensive game. I think coach put together a great defensive strategy, we stuck to it. LeBron is a special talent and special player, so he was able to get his but for the most part, we kept everybody else in check.” -- Tyson Chandler
Felton was spectacular as the go-to offensive weapon for the Knicks. With Anthony sidelined, Felton was forced to create off the dribble and attack from the perimeter. His gritty performance provided New York a jolt on the offensive side of the floor as he hit 10-of-20 shots from the field, 6-of-10 behind the arc, and registered seven dimes in the win.
18 treys for the Knicks tonight against the Heat.
The Knicks stayed overnight in Miami and will board a plane for Chicago on Friday afternoon. New York will face another Eastern Conference foe on Saturday with a matchup against the Bulls.