Knicks @ Cavaliers Gameday

Scouting Report

Jonah Ballow


Knicks vs. Cavaliers 7:00 PM
Where to Watch: MSG
Where to Listen: ESPN 1050 AM

Big Picture

The Knicks unleashed an impressive 33-point win on Tuesday night to reverse some of the offensive woes that has plagued the team this past week. On a night where Carmelo Anthony was limited to just one point, he snatched 11 boards while Tyson Chandler dominated the paint and Amar’e Stoudemire fueled a huge third quarter spurt. New York improved to 7-10 on the first of a four-game road trip. On the injury front, Baron Davis continues to rehab his back and hopes to return soon but remains cautious at the moment. Josh Harrellson is sidelined with a fractured wrist and did not travel with the team on the current four-game road trip.

The new era in Cleveland has officially begun behind No. 1 overall pick Kyrie Irving. The rookie out of Duke will attempt to make Cavaliers’ fans forget or at least ease the pain of losing superstar LeBron James to free agency. Additionally, Cleveland drafted forward Tristan Thompson and acquired Omri Casspi from Sacramento. After a 19-63 2010-11 season, the Cavaliers are off to a 6-10 start this year and in the midst of a four-game losing streak.

Last Time Out
After a huge 17-6 third quarter run, the Knicks built a big lead and cruised to a 111-78 victory in Charlotte on Tuesday. Every player on the New York registered at least one point while the road team snapped a six-game losing skid.

Despite shooting 50 percent from the floor, Cleveland could not overtake a Dwyane Wade-less Miami Heat and fell 92-85 on the road last night.

The Numbers Game
The Knicks are fresh off a dominating performance in Charlotte where they outscored the Bobcats 46-20 in the paint and tallied 21 second chance points.

Match-up to Watch
Iman Shumpert vs. Kyrie Irving

Similar to last night, two rookies will square off in the starting lineup at the point guard position. At 6-5, Iman Shumpert has adjusted quite nicely to the point guard spot, especially defending smaller – quicker opponents. Irving leads the Cavaliers in points and assists per game, living up to his No. 1 overall pick status. The Cleveland rookie is not exceptionally fast but understands pace and when to utilize different speeds depending on the situation. From an offensive standpoint, expect Shumpert to bounce back from a 1-for-9 shooting night on Tuesday.

What to Look For
Stoudemire spoke about the importance of snagging the first road victory and to win impressive fashion was a great sign for the Knicks. The team found a way to share the basketball with 26 total assists on a night where Anthony only scored one point. New York should enjoy the same type of offensive success as Cleveland ranks 24th overall in points allowed per game. Chandler will be licking his chops again after dominating the glass in Charlotte. The Cavaliers are small in the frontcourt while Anderson Varejao can be a pest; Chandler will own the size and athleticism advantage, which could lead to a huge productivity for the Knicks center. Both squads enter tonight’s contest on the tail-end of a back-to-back Cleveland heading back from Miami.

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