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New York Knicks coach Mike Woodson has called this month "pivotal" in determining whether his team can become a threat in the Eastern Conference.

Now the resilient Knicks appear to be making that happen.

After knocking off the two-time defending NBA champions, New York looks to extend its longest winning streak Saturday night when it visits the last-place Philadelphia 76ers.

The Knicks (13-22) hardly resemble the team that dropped 13 of 16 to open the season. On Thursday, they captured their third straight win and fourth in five games in 2014 with a 102-92 win over visiting Miami.

''It wasn't going to last all season like that,'' said Raymond Felton, who had 13 points and a season-high 14 assists. ''We were just going through a slump, now I feel like we're out of it.''

Carmelo Anthony finished with 29 points and Andrea Bargnani added 19 as New York clawed its way back to within a game of playoff position.

''We're getting better," Anthony said. "We're learning from our mistakes we've made in the past and we're going to continue to build on this and see what happens.''

Anthony hopes to continue playing well after totaling 63 points while hitting 9 of 15 from 3-point range in his last two games. The six-time All-Star, however, has scored just 18.8 per game on 35.7 percent shooting - including 8 for 28 from beyond the arc - in his last six in Philadelphia dating to his time with Denver.

He had 25 points but shot 9 for 28 from the field while missing all six of his 3-point attempts in a 97-80 road loss to the 76ers on Jan. 26. Last season's scoring champion also put up 29 points while missing 12 of 18 in a 99-93 home win on Feb. 24.

Bargnani has scored 20 or more in six of his last seven games against the 76ers, averaging 23.0 points over that span going back to his time with Toronto.

Amare Stoudemire helped make up for the loss of Tyson Chandler with 14 points and 11 boards in Thursday's win. He could play a large role again with Chandler expected to miss his third straight game because of an illness.

New York also could be without backup point guard Beno Udrih due to inflammation in his left knee, and it remains to be seen whether J.R. Smith will be summoned from the bench.

Smith did not play Thursday after receiving a $50,000 fine for attempting to untie an opponent's sneaker for the second straight game. Woodson criticized Smith's behavior during a radio interview Wednesday but said before the game he wouldn't discuss Smith any longer.

''I didn't know anything about it,'' the reigning Sixth Man of the Year Award winner said of his benching.

The 76ers (12-24) are hoping to stop the Knicks' run, though they've dropped five of six home games following a 114-104 loss to visiting Detroit on Friday.

Thaddeus Young finished with 22 points, Michael Carter-Williams had 21 and Evan Turner added 19 for Philadelphia, which has lost three straight after reeling off four consecutive road wins.

The 76ers, allowing an NBA-worst 111.2 points per game, have surrendered an average of 117.0 points and allowed opponents to shoot 47.6 percent from 3-point range during this skid. They've also been outrebounded by a combined 173-120 in that stretch.

New York, giving up 85.7 points per game while holding opponents to 24.2 percent from 3 during its winning streak, has won five of seven meetings in Philadelphia.

Tagged: Knicks, 76ers, Carmelo Anthony, J.R. Smith

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