Sunday, December 7, 2008

Live From The Garden: Knicks -v- Pistons

Knicks 104, Pistons 92

Wakey wakey, eggs and breaky. Early one this Sunday, with the Pistons suffering the classic curse of the NY-Noon game. It's hard for the players to resist partying the Saturday night before in the Big Apple. It showed with Allen Iverson and Pistons starting very slow, going down 10-0 before being forced to call a timeout and regroup. More of the same after the timeout, with a very poor showing from Allen Iverson who looked a bit slow and unlike himself. Coach Michael Curry sat Iverson a good chunk in the first quarter, putting in Rodney Stuckey to get the Pistons running some offensive plays, instead of Iverson's ineffectiveness. The first quarter ends, and the Knicks have a commanding lead, 29-12.

In the second quarter, the Pistons were able to get a lot of points, scoring 31 overall. However, there was no D on the Pistons end either, and the Knicks got 36 points, led mostly by timely buckets from Quentin Richardson, and Chris Duhon pushing the Pick n Roll with David Lee on almost every possession. David Lee only finished with 12 points, but his 19 rebounds and overall impact on both ends of the floor was outstanding. The Knicks wound up getting the lead to almost 30 points at one point. Towards the end of the first half, the Pistons went on a mini-run, looking to gain momentum at the break. Knicks fans are used to runs like these, which usually led to a horrible second half, repeating none of the success from the first two quarters. Would there be more of that tonight?

At the break, it was 65-43 Knicks. Looking at the box score, there was something very interesting that popped out. The Knicks were 20-40 from the field, while the Pistons were almost identical at 19-41...yet there was a 22 point lead! Breakin' it down further, you'll see the Knicks success came from the line (were they got 21 shot attempts to the Piston's 9), and from 3-point-land, where they hit 8 of 14. Add to that the great ball control of the Knicks (2 turnovers), and the Pistons looking sloppy (8 turnovers), and there's your lead.

In a game where the Knicks almost dominated from beginning to end, it was Jared Jeffries who was horrid and kept letting the Pistons get back in it. His decisions on offense, including fading, long jump shots (he's never hit one in his life), and repeated offenses charges, were really horrendous and his number should have gotten pulled much earlier. Jeffries was the only one on the team to log a negative +/- for the Knicks. Tempers flared a bit in the 3rd, with Richard Hamilton and Rasheed Wallace both getting techs, but this time that didn't exactly ignite Sheed, and the Pistons were still down 18 at the start of the fourth.

Pretty bad game for the Pistons backcourt, with Iverson shooting 33% from the field, and Rip getting his second technical in the 4th quarter, resulting in his ejection just when the Pistons looked like they could make a run. I thought Michael Curry was supposed to have control over those tempers? Jared Jeffries continued his run of horrible ball in the fourth quarter. Combine that with the refs making even on their ejection of Rip, by giving the Pistons tons of calls in the fourth. Detroit managed to get the lead down to 5 (!), which I'm sure made half the (totally packed) arena think twice about calling this a win.

Tayshaun Prince really piled it on in the fourth quarter, and it seemed like almost every shot he hit was with the left hand, about 3 inches from the hoop (and one big dunk the same way). They probably should have went to that earlier in the game, since it was basically unstoppable. Tayshaun finished with 23 points, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks, 2 steals on 11-19 shooting (!). But it wasn't enough for the Pistons, who gave up a huge 3-pointer from Al Harrington with 1:20 left, extending the lead to 9 points, sealing the win.

It was games like this, last year, that were the worst. A huge lead in the first half, leading to a complacent team, horrible second half and eventual loss. But tonight was different, and Coach Mike D'Antoni didn't let the team lose their energy and passion, and they pulled it out in the end in front of a packed Garden crowd. Great game for the Knicks, bouncing back from two tough losses, and they again showed that on any given night, they can compete on the basketball court.

3 Comments:

willie said...

The New York Times is reporting that coach Michael Curry might start Rodney Stuckey at PG, and move Allen Iverson to SG.
Kwame Brown would be benched and Rasheed Wallace would move to C. Richard Hamilton would move to SF and Tayshaun Prince would move to PF. The move should probably have been made long ago, and Stuckey should be picked up in all leagues, even if the report doesn't come to fruition immediately.
Source: New York Times
go and get him dudes.. he's a stud in waiting..

David said...

Interesting tidbit willie--but even if they start him, will he get the minutes..the guy has only played more than 30 minutes twice since 11/1

willie said...

dave

i dont have a crystal ball, but i assure you it sure looks like a nice waiver pick,, very little downside and a whole lotta upside.. his numbers are 10 and 4 , points and assiats for 20 minutes,, imagine 30 minutes,, not to mention steals..

later.