Sunday, April 29, 2012

Knicks melt in Miami in game 1

HEAT 100
KNICKS 67
MIA leads 1-0

Nobody expected the Knicks to win their playoff series against the Miami Heat. The Heat are a perennial powerhouse in the Eastern Conference, that has had NBA Championship expectations for two years now, while the Knicks have been a team with so many transitions and moving pieces, that the match-up wasn't a good thing for New York.

That being said, nobody expected New York to run out of the building like it was a match-up between Duke and some sub-par Division I-AA school. The Heat stampeded over the Knicks, turned Carmelo Anthony into a pumpkin and and made every Knicks offensive possession into a farce.

It's easy to forget that the Knicks were actually winning this game 11-10 at one point. Eventually the power of the Heat proved to be a bit to much to handle, but even with that, the Knicks still trailed by one point 30-29. Then it all fell apart.

A 32-2 run by Miami, highlighted by 12 Knicks fouls on Heat players, and 10 Knicks turnovers, as well as LeBron James going completely nuts on the boards both offensively and defensively buried the Knicks for the entire night.

The fouls by the Knicks became so ridiculous that it seemed like every Knicks possession resulted in either a turnover or a hard foul. Even Tyson Chandler, who was rumored to be sick with the flue was almost ejected from the game for a flagarent foul on James, where he bumped James from behind and LeBron did his best acting job to make it look worse than it really was.

Speaking of LeBronamania he had 14 points and an assist during the 32-2 run, as New York  never had an answer for the former league MVP.

It didn't help matters that any shot the Knicks could get, which was few and far between either banked off the rim or missed the bucket entirely. Carmelo Anthony, who led the team down the strech, was nowhere to be found after a nightmarish 7 point first half, and forget about Amar'e Stoudemire who never arrived at the arena.

To add insult to injury, Knicks back-up shooting guard Iman Shumpert suffered a torn ACL and a lateral meniscus after falling to the court in a heap while bringing the ball up court. He will require surgery and is to miss the next six to eight months. That means the Knicks, who are already the walking wounded won't see Shumpert again until December, one month into the new season, at the latest.

On top of Shumpert's injury, point guard Baron Davis left the first half complaining of back pain, and third string point guard Mike Bibby played the point for much of the second half. The Knicks are already short on point guards with Jeremy Lin out of the season. Without Davis at 100% the Knicsk have to rely on Bibby who hasn't been a true starting point guard in about a decade when he was with Sacramento. In short, it's getting ugly fast.

Granted, nobody expected the Knicks to win this series, but a little bit more fight, would have been better than this.

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