KNICKS 96 WIZARDS 88 | VERIZON CENTER
How it happened:
A loss to the Wizards in early February soured the Knicks and they made sure to return to Washington and avenge the defeat to start the month of March.
On Friday night, Carmelo Anthony scored 30 points and Raymond Felton added 23 to lift New York over Washington in a 96-88 victory at the Verizon Center.
The game featured 16 lead changes but the Knicks managed to grasp a hold of the momentum down the stretch due to a big goaltending call.
Entering the fourth quarter, New York trailed the Wizards by two points. John Wall was whistled for goaltending on a Jason Kidd fast break opportunity. The bucket counted and Wall was hit with a technical for disputing the decision from the striped shirts.
J.R. Smith would then drill a 3-pointer, Felton connected on a nice drive to the rim, Amar’e Stoudemire nailed a free throw line jumper, and Anthony putback a layup to cap a game-altering 12-3 run from the visiting Knicks.
With New York clinging to an 89-87 lead at the 2:15 mark of the final stanza, Anthony sunk a clutch shot from downtown. Felton followed up Anthony’s critical 3-pointer with another layup to essentially secure the road win.
New York improved to 35-20 on the season and has now won three straight games heading into the monumental matchup against the Heat on Sunday.
Smith scored 13 points off the bench, Stoudemire posted 12 on 5-for-8 shooting from the floor, and Tyson Chandler snatched nine boards.
Head coach Mike Woodson made an adjustment to the starting lineup as he placed James White at the small forward spot and moved Iman Shumpert to shooting guard. Pablo Prigioni did not play tonight and has been dealing with back spasms for a couple of days.
Knick of the Night:
Felton was aggressive from the opening tip and provided a much needed jolt of offense from the point guard position. He scored 23 on 9-for-18 shooting to go along with six rebounds in the win.
New York received 34 points from the bench crew tonight.
The Knicks jumped on a plane back to New York for a day to prepare for the reigning champs on Sunday afternoon. The Heat and Knicks will square off at 1 PM in the third meeting of the season between the two teams.