Atlanta, GA (SportsNetwork.com) - Carmelo Anthony scored 25 points and helped
key a fourth-quarter surge that carried the New York Knicks to a 95-91 bounce-
back victory over the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena.
Andrea Bargnani amassed 20 points and 11 rebounds and Tim Hardaway Jr.
contributed a career-high 14 points off the bench for the Knicks, who put
together a pivotal 15-2 run in the final period to put behind Sunday's
embarrassing 31-point home loss to San Antonio. J.R. Smith added 12 points in
his second outing back from a 5-game suspension for a drug program violation.
The Hawks received 25 points from Jeff Teague and 23 from Al Horford, but shot
a brutal 5-of-24 from 3-point range en route to their first setback at home
Atlanta battled back from a 17-point second-quarter deficit to grab a 78-72
lead when Kyle Korver followed up a successful jumper with a 3-pointer with
8:33 left to play. The Knicks responded with 11 consecutive points, however,
to move in front to stay.
Anthony buried a triple to forge a 78-78 tie with just over seven minutes to
go, and a Raymond Felton bucket followed by Bargnani's 3-point basket made it
a 5-point game just past the midway mark of the quarter. Two more clutch
jumpers by Felton, who recorded six of his 10 points during crunch time,
staked New York to an 87-80 advantage with four minutes left.
Bargnani's short jumper with 2:15 remaining created a double-digit spread at
92-82 that proved to be too much for Atlanta to overcome.
"We just need to start learning how to be able to hold these leads and finish
out the games," said Horford afterward. 'We've been in pretty much every game
that we've played in and we've let some of them slip away. We have to be
better in that regard."
New York held a 55-45 halftime lead, with its success from the perimeter and
the Hawks' lack thereof the difference. The Knicks hit on 8-of-19 tries from
3-point range over the first two quarters, compared to a 1-of-11 success rate
for the Hawks.
Atlanta's struggles from long distance continued after the break, but the
Knicks went 0-for-7 on threes in the third quarter and shot a woeful 20
percent overall for the stanza to allow the Hawks to creep back.
Horford had eight points and Teague seven during a 17-3 sequence that gave
Atlanta its first lead since the game's initial stages, with the latter making
two free throws for a 64-63 Hawks' edge late in the third quarter.
"That third quarter was a disaster," Knicks head coach Mike Woodson remarked.
"A lot of it was because we didn't move the ball offensively. Defensively we
were OK, but offensively we were terrible in the 3rd quarter."
The Knicks finally began to heat up again at the start of the fourth, which
Hardaway began with a pair of baskets to put his team back ahead at 69-68.
Atlanta countered with a 10-2 burst in which Korver recorded eight points,
however, to regain the upper hand.
Smith went just 1-for-9 from the field in a 5-point effort in Sunday's blowout
loss to the Spurs, but was on fire early on in this one. The reigning Sixth
Man of the Year knocked down a trio of shots from beyond the arc in the game's
first eight-plus minutes to help New York jump out to a 29-22 lead in the
final minute of the opening quarter.
The Knicks then dominated most of the second period, with Hardaway draining a
pair of treys during a 13-2 flurry that opened up a 44-28 advantage with 7:25
left in the frame. The margin grew to 17 points shortly afterward, when
Anthony sank three free throws after being fouled from beyond the arc for
a 47-30 score.
"I thought our bench did an excellent job tonight in helping us win," said
Woodson in reference to Hardaway.
Korver extended his streak of consecutive games with a 3-pointer to 81 after
connecting 1:37 into the fourth quarter ... The Knicks have now won eight of
the last nine meetings in the series, including five in a row ... Knicks
forward Kenyon Martin returned to action after being held out of Sunday's loss
to rest a troublesome ankle, but center Amare Stoudemire (knee) was rested
with New York playing Thursday against Houston ... Atlanta finished with a
56-28 advantage in points in the paint.
The Sports Network