NBA

Wed, Feb 22, 2012 - 7:30 PM ET
Game Recap
 

Knicks roll in advance of Heat showdown

After NY's easy win, the Lin Tracker looks ahead to the Heat showdown.
After NY's easy win, the Lin Tracker looks ahead to the Heat showdown.
Share This Story

   
 

NEW YORK (AP)

Not much heat from the Hawks for Jeremy Lin and the New York Knicks. That's likely to change Thursday night when it's Lin vs. LeBron in Miami.

bracket

LINSANITY!

Jeremy Lin is an NBA phenomenon and a sports sensation. We've got it covered from every angle.

Lin had 17 points and nine assists, sitting out most of the fourth quarter in a rare easy game during his remarkable run, and the Knicks tuned up for their trip by beating Atlanta 99-82 on Wednesday.

Carmelo Anthony scored 15 points in his second game back from injury for the Knicks, who led the depleted Hawks by 25 points at halftime. New York bounced back from a loss to New Jersey on Monday and won for the ninth time in 11 games since Lin joined the rotation.

The Knicks visit Miami on Thursday in their final game before the All-Star break, and Lin's emergence has the Heat's attention.

''It's going to be a lot of, a lot of anticipation about this game,'' Anthony said. ''We're going down there to win. Miami is playing great basketball right now. One of the hottest teams, if not the hottest team in the NBA.

''It'll be a great game.''

LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and teammates have been asked repeatedly in recent days about the ex-Harvard guard, and coach Mike D'Antoni was told the word out of Miami is the Heat will be waiting for the Knicks' back-to-back Sports Illustrated cover boy.

''At the airport?'' he joked.

bracket

THE RIGHT MOVES

See how NBA dance teams get crowds all fired up.

Not quite. But whatever they do will provide more resistance than the Hawks, who trailed by as many as 30.

Jeff Teague scored 18 points for the Hawks. They played without All-Star guard Joe Johnson, who left their loss at Chicago on Monday with a sore left knee and had to pull out of Sunday's game in Orlando, and have lost three straight and five of six.

''Coming into this game, being as depleted as we were, I still was hoping we could come out and just put together four solid quarters. We just didn't do that,'' Hawks coach Larry Drew said.

The Knicks shot 52 percent in the first half, scored 30 points in both periods, and led 60-35 at the break.

''We are professionals. They just came out and they attacked us,'' Teague said. ''That's all I can really say.''

The Knicks lost their focus briefly midway through the third before pulling away again to lead 78-56 heading into the fourth. Lin watched the first 6-plus minutes of the final period before D'Antoni curiously put him back in leading by 20 with 5:13 left. Lin still played only 33 minutes after he logged at least 36 in all but one of the previous 10 games.

He'll likely need to do more against the Heat, who have won seven in a row and have the NBA's best record at 26-7.

The Heat have been the NBA's biggest story since building their Big Three in 2010, but even they've been playing in Lin's shadow the last two weeks. That will change Thursday in a nationally televised game that James said could be ''one of the most watched games we've had in a long time, especially with what Jeremy Lin is doing.''

But Lin isn't getting caught up in the hype.

''I think for us, we want to make sure what we're thinking about is we want to build momentum going into the All-Star break and we want to make a push after the All-Star break. And I think this is a good opportunity to build momentum,'' he said.

''It's a big game, don't get me wrong. We're playing a great team, and it's going to be a good evaluation of where we're at. So from that end obviously we're excited and ready for the challenge. But besides that, we're just going try to stay consistent.''

The game against Atlanta came on the one-year anniversary of the Knicks' acquisition of Anthony from Denver in a blockbuster trade that cost them four of their top six players. The results have been underwhelming — 14-14 last season and 17-17 this season, and D'Antoni acknowledged the high price the Knicks paid for the All-Star forward ''depleted a lot of things.''

However, he said they've built their depth back, and the potential was obvious in the first half, when all nine players who played scored.

New additions Baron Davis and J.R. Smith could be an explosive second-team backcourt, and teamed up on a pretty alley-oop that Smith dropped in with his back to the hoop. Steve Novak is the 3-point specialist needed to space the floor so Lin and Anthony have room to drive into the lane.

bracket

POWER RANKINGS

The NBA's best are battling for position. We rank all 30 teams.

''The things are developing and we'll get our guys, everybody up to par, and if that happens then we should be fairly good,'' D'Antoni said.

Novak made five 3-pointers and scored 17 points. Landry Fields had 16, and Smith finished with 12. Davis had six assists in 14 minutes.

Notes: Drew was disappointed that Josh Smith was passed over in favor of Boston's Rajon Rondo when Commissioner David Stern chose the injury replacement for Johnson. Smith averages 16 points and 9.6 rebounds, is top 15 in the league in blocks, rebounds and steals, and was already considered perhaps the biggest snub when reserves were chosen. ''I really thought that he would get the invite once word was that Joe wouldn't be able to play,'' Drew said. ''I mean, you look at Josh's numbers, he has good numbers. His numbers are good enough to be where he should be an All-Star. Why he didn't make it, I don't know.'' ... Knicks assistant Mike Woodson was the Hawks' head coach from 2004-10. ... Lansdowne Road, an Irish pub in the Hell's Kitchen section of New York, announced it was changing its name to LINsdowne Road

Tagged: Hawks, Heat, Knicks, Joe Johnson, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, Josh Smith, J.R. Smith, Jeremy Lin

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by


NBA Videos

NBA considering mid-season Vegas tournament? Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Adam Silver confirms the NBA has engaged in early conversations about the possib...

LeBron and Blatt 'will work together beautifully' Posted: Jul 14, 2014
Cavaliers head coach David Blatt on LeBron James' decision to return to Clevelan...

LeBron's back and so are the Cavs Posted: Jul 11, 2014
FOX Sports 1's Gary Payton weighs-in on LeBron's decision to return to Cleveland...

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Clippers/browse/featuredproduct/491845/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_491000/ff_491845_xl.jpg&w=100 59.95 adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red
    adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/498609/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_498000/ff_498609_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black
    adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Knicks/browse/featuredproduct/620470/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_620000/ff_620470_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey..
    Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Antonio_Spurs/browse/featuredproduct/692239/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_692000/ff_692239_xl.jpg&w=100 25.95 Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat
    Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/851828/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851828_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black
    Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/851842/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851842_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White
    adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/890174/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890174_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Wh..
    adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room Flex Hat - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/890384/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890384_xl.jpg&w=100 19.99 adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room F..