Anthony returns, Porzingis debuts, Knicks win opener
NEW YORK (AP) Carmelo Anthony scored 17 points in his first game since left knee surgery, Kristaps Porzingis had seven in his NBA debut and the New York Knicks beat Paschoalotto Bauru of Brazil 100-81 on Wednesday night.
Anthony hadn’t played since the All-Star Game on this court in February. He had surgery on Feb. 19 and missed the final 30 games of the season but looked good as new Wednesday while shooting 8 for 10 in 20 minutes.
Porzingis, the 7-foot-3 Latvian who was the No. 4 pick in the draft, made two 3-pointers while starting alongside Anthony in the frontcourt.
BAURU: Ricardo Fischer had 11 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. Robert Day scored 19 points.
KNICKS: Newcomers Kyle O’Quinn and Kevin Seraphin both scored 14 points.
FISHER’S FIGHT: Knicks coach Derek Fisher was involved in an altercation with Memphis Grizzlies forward and former teammate Matt Barnes in California on Saturday, a person with knowledge of the details said. Fisher informed his players about the situation, first reported by the New York Post, before the game.
”I’m here, I’m focused,” Fisher said. ”It’s not something that’s going to take me away from who we are or what we’re trying to do and I assured them of that.”
KRISTAPS’ CONFIDENCE: Porzingis said before the draft that he wanted to play in New York and was asked why Wednesday.
”If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere,” he said. ”So if you’re great here they love you, if you suck they let you know. So it’s definitely a tough place but I love that and you can do all you want talking but you’ve got to out there on the floor and actually prove that you can play.”
SASHA STARTS: With Arron Afflalo resting a sore left hamstring, Sasha Vujacic started at shooting guard for the Knicks. He spent last season and most of the last few years playing in Europe and hadn’t started an NBA game since making 17 starts for the New Jersey Nets in 2010-11.
SAD START: There was a moment of silence before the game for Hall of Famer Harry Gallatin, who died Wednesday at 88. He was a seven-time All-Star forward for the Knicks in the 1950s and holds the franchise record with 610 consecutive games played.
UP NEXT: The Knicks visit the Washington Wizards on Friday. Bauru will travel to Washington on Sunday.