Anthony’s jumper gives Knicks 110-109 victory over 76ers
NEW YORK (AP) Carmelo Anthony was disappointed the Knicks let another big lead against the 76ers turn into a close finish.
He made sure this one went the Knicks’ way.
Anthony made a jumper with 0.3 seconds left to give New York a 110-109 victory on Saturday night.
The Knicks blew a 17-point lead, just as they did in Philadelphia on Jan. 11 when they lost 98-97 on T.J. McConnell’s jumper at the buzzer.
”It was similar situations as the first time we played them in Philly,” Anthony said. ”Only thing is the roles were reversed this time and instead of them making the shot, I made the shot.”
The Knicks fell behind by one when Jahlil Okafor scored with 9 seconds remaining. But Anthony dribbled left after a timeout, pulling up over Robert Covington to cap his 37-point performance.
The Knicks then intercepted the 76ers’ inbounds pass to hold on and snap their two-game losing streak.
”You go into the locker room and you see the shot he made with .3 seconds left on the clock and Robert’s right there,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said. ”That’s Melo. He is a gifted isolation scorer.”
Derrick Rose added 18 points and Justin Holiday had 14 for the Knicks, who won for just the third time in 11 games. They played without starters Kristaps Porzingis (sprained right ankle) and Joakim Noah (sore left hamstring).
Okafor had a season-high 28 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as the 76ers nearly pulled out the victory after beating Washington on Friday. Dario Saric had 19 points and 15 rebounds, and Covington finished with 20 points and 10 boards.
The Knicks avoided falling behind the 76ers into 13th place in the Eastern Conference, but it might be too late to get ahead of the teams they need to. They came in five games behind Detroit for the eighth and final playoff spot.
Before the game, Brown said his experience was that teams playing on the second night of a back-to-back usually started quickly before getting fatigued. But it was the Knicks was started fast thanks to Anthony, who was 7 for 10 for 17 points as New York led 31-25.
The Knicks led by 10 at halftime and Rose scored 10 in the third to keep Philadelphia from cutting into it. The Sixers were still down double digits well into the fourth quarter before Okafor, in a strong performance after the Sixers decided to keep him at the trade deadline, and McConnell led them in what became a frantic finish.
”Again, it’s a tough game and the swings can go quickly,” Hornacek said, ”and the biggest thing for us is we have to play the last five minutes of the game almost like it’s the middle of the first quarter or something with the execution and the quick movements instead of just walking it up.”
76ers: Philadelphia had won four of its previous five games. … The Sixers have dropped six straight at Madison Square Garden.
Knicks: Hornacek said Porzingis was considered day-to-day, with a possibility of returning in their next game Monday. But he said Noah would be out longer after having a setback in his recovery during the break. … Noah celebrated his 32nd birthday.
Knicks President of Basketball Operations Phil Jackson tweeted for just the fourth time this season on Saturday, wishing Tex Winter a happy 95th birthday . Winter was his former assistant coach and is considered the pioneer of the triangle offense. Jackson ended the tweet with a triangle emoji.
SPEAKING OF THE TRIANGLE
The Knicks have started running it more, according to Hornacek. He says it not only benefits the younger players on offense but also helps the Knicks be in better position to get back on defense. The Knicks ran the offense that Jackson used to win 11 championships as a coach under Derek Fisher and Kurt Rambis the previous two seasons, but Hornacek had opened up the offense this season to get the Knicks playing quicker.
76ers: Host Golden State on Monday.
Knicks: Host Toronto on Monday. The Raptors have won the last five meetings.