It certainly wasn’t pretty, but at this point the 6-15 New York Knicks will take any win they can get their hands on, even if it required blowing a 23-point second half lead and beating a Chicago Bulls team without both Luol Deng and Jimmy Butler.
The Knicks didn’t execute well in their 83-78 win but got big games from both Carmelo Anthony and Amar’e Stoudemire, to at least stop the bleeding for one night.
With that being said, let’s take a look at how the Knicks graded out in a much needed win.
Pablo Prigioni (6 points, 2-of-9 shooting, 2 assists, 2 rebounds, 4 steals)
Prigioni got the start and played 31 minutes and it is no coincidence the Knicks started clicking on offense early on. He didn’t shoot it that well, going only 2-for-7 from behind the arc, but the ball moved early on and he played some solid defense. I will take that. Grade: B-
Iman Shumpert (0 points, 0-of-2 shooting, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals)
Shump only played 13 minutes thanks to a bruised knee but was the only Knicks starter not to score in the first half, although he took only two shots. He did find a way to contribute in other areas in limited action. Grade: C-
Carmelo Anthony (30 points, 9-of-21 shooting, 10 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals)
He didn’t shoot it particularly well, but it was a fairly productive night for ‘Melo, who led the Knicks with 30 points on 9-of-21 shooting while pulling down 10 rebounds, dishing out four assists and racking up three steals. He feasted early on the fact that the Bulls were missing Deng and Butler and despite the usual unproductive isolation plays on the strong side late in the game it was a good night overall. Grade: A-
Kenyon Martin (3 points, 0-of-3 shooting, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 4 blocks)
Martin didn’t make a shot from the floor but impacted the game in a big way on the glass and at the defensive end of the floor where he had four big blocks. He was also a team-best plus-16 in the win. No other player finished better than a plus-six. Grade: B+
Andrea Bargnani (8 points, 4-of-10 shooting, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 1 block)
Bargnani continues to struggle in a big way with his jumper. He now hasn’t shot over 40 percent in four straight games. In addition to struggling at the offensive end, the seven-footer managed to grab only three rebounds in 27 minutes. Grade: D
J.R. Smith (7 points, 2-of-8 shooting, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal)
Speaking of broken jump shots, that brings us to Smith, who was lousy once again as a 25 percent shooting day is starting to look like a productive night for the reigning Sixth Man of the Year. He also committed a bone-headed foul on Mike Dunleavy midway through the fourth quarter that got him a quick seat on the bench. Grade: D-
Amar’e Stoudemire (14 points, 7-of-11 shooting, 9 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals, 1 block)
Stoudemire was very good once again as he keyed a 19-0 spurt early in the game as he played in the second game of a back-to-back for the first time this season. He entered Wednesday’s contest averaging 14.3 points over his past three games and didn’t disappoint with a 14 points (7-of-11) and nine rebound effort. Even more impressive is the Knicks actually fed him the ball in the post on occasion, disproving the theory that the paint is made of hot lava and too dangerous of a place to step foot in. Grade: A
Tim Hardaway Jr. (7 points, 3-of-7 shooting, 1 rebound, 1 assist)
The rookie added seven points of the bench and continues to look good in his role. Grade: C+
Beno Udrih (8 points, 4-of-5 shooting, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal)
Udrih got 17 minutes in the role usually reserved for Prigioni and looked very good. He scored the ball, making 4-of-5 shots from the floor and put together an all-around nice performance. Grade: B