CLIPPERS 102 KNICKS 88 | MADISON SQUARE GARDEN
How it happened:
Despite an exhilarating third quarter and an explosive 42-point performance from Carmelo Anthony, the Knicks could not stifle the Clippers in a 102-88 defeat on Sunday afternoon.
Trailing by eight points coming out of the locker room at halftime, New York responded on a 14-6 run capped off by a long ball from Anthony to tie the game at 68-68 at the 6:09 mark.
Just two minutes later, Anthony buried another shot from downtown to hand New York its first lead since the early portion of the first quarter.
Unfortunately for the Knicks, Los Angeles owned the fourth period by outscoring the home team 32-17 in the final stanza. Even when Anthony trimmed the lead to six points with 2:48 remaining, Chris Paul answered by hitting a difficult jumper in the lane followed by an 11-footer to push the advantage to double digits and out of reach.
Iman Shumpert started on Paul but the All-Star point guard saw different defenders throughout the game while he scored 25 points, dished out seven assists, and grabbed six boards in the win.
The Clippers only played DeAndre Jordan 18 minutes and utilized a small lineup with Blake Griffin as the featured big man in the paint. He finished with 17 points and 12 boards in 37 minutes of court time.
Jamal Crawford was a key contributor off the pine and Los Angeles’ leading scorer with 27 points on 12-for-22 shooting from the floor.
On the opposite side, Felton posted 20 points and fought through a head injury that occurred in the third quarter. Amar’e Stoudemire registered nine points and six rebounds off the bench.
New York dropped to 32-16 on the season while the Clippers improved to 35-17 in the first matchup between the two teams this year.
Knick of the Night:
Two nights removed from a 36-point outing in Minneapolis, Anthony was sizzling on Sunday and connected on 14-of-26 shots from the field and an efficient 5-of-11 behind the arc. His 42 points were a game-high and eight rebounds were second best on the Knicks aside from Tyson Chandler’s 11 boards.
Los Angeles’ deep and potent bench combined for 48 points today.
The Knicks will have two days to prepare for the Raptors in the Wednesday night contest at the Garden. New York has only one more game on the docket before the All-Star break where Anthony, Chandler, Steve Novak, and James White will head to Houston.