New York KNICKS!!! vs Cleveland Cavs
A night after falling victim to LeBron James' new team, the New York Knicks hope they can bounce right back against his old one.
There's little evidence to suggest they won't.
The Cleveland Cavaliers haven't been providing much resistance to anyone while losing 10 straight, a dreadful slide they'll hope to finally snap Saturday night as they try to deny the Knicks a ninth consecutive road win.
Cleveland (7-19) has won eight in a row over the Knicks, but those victories now seem like they happened several decades ago.
The Cavs had James in the lineup during those wins, and the two-time MVP hasn't often failed to deliver against New York. He averaged 33.8 points and twice cracked 50 in that stretch as the Cavaliers won by an average of 15.7 points.
James continued his mastery over the Knicks (16-11) on Friday in a different uniform. He had 32 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in Miami's 113-91 rout at Madison Square Garden, helping to hand New York a humbling loss two days after it came oh-so-close to knocking off Boston for what would have been a ninth straight win.
"We understand we're not far away but we still have to improve and get better," said Amare Stoudemire, who had 24 points as his franchise-record nine-game streak of scoring 30 was snapped. "I think playing these guys is a learning lesson for us. We've got to learn from these games and get better."
The Knicks have still won eight straight on the road. A victory Saturday would be their 11th away from home this season, matching their total from all of 2009-10.
Cleveland hasn't often been close to its opposition the past three weeks, losing 10 straight by an average of 17.5 points. The Cavaliers have shot just 40.1 percent during their longest slide since a 15-game skid in late 2002, with Friday's 108-99 loss at Indiana one of just three by single digits since the drought began Nov. 30.
"We just have to get a win," forward Antawn Jamison said. "We're doing a good job of 36-40 minutes of pretty good basketball. There are no consolation prizes in the NBA."
Jamison was only around for the Cavaliers' most recent win against the Knicks after coming over from Washington in February. He had 17 points and 12 rebounds in Cleveland's 124-93 victory March 1 in which it led by as many as 49 points.
Jamison has averaged 21.8 points and 10.7 rebounds in his last 10 games versus New York, but it seems unlikely that he and the Cavaliers will be able to keep up with the Knicks this time. New York averages 108.1 points, a total Cleveland has surpassed once this season.
A large portion of New York's offense comes from behind the 3-point line, and its success from beyond the arc can often spell the difference between a win and a loss. The Knicks are 11-1 when they hit 10 or more 3-pointers.
Wilson Chandler has been one of New York's most impressive gunners since coach Mike D'Antoni inserted him into the starting lineup Nov. 28. Chandler has averaged 19.5 points and shot 53.6 percent - including 42.2 percent from 3-point range.
Chandler's never had much success against the Cavaliers, though. He's averaged 10.1 points in seven career games, shooting 36.0 percent overall.
NEW YORK KNICKS
At Gaurd From NORTH CAROLINA 18.3 PPG and 9 APG
RAYMOND "the captian" FELTON!
At the other Gaurd From STANFORD 10.3 PPG and 7.4 RPG
LANDRY "ROOKIE" FIELDS!
At Foward From ITALY 15.9 PPG and 4.6 RPG
Danillo "THE ****" GALLLIINNNAARRIIII
At Foward from DePaul 17.3 PPG and 6.4 RPG
Wilson "ILL WILL" CHANDLER!!!
AND AT CENTER from FLORIDA 26.6 PPG and 9.3 RPG
AMARE "STAT/30+" STOUDEMIRE!!!!
And the Cavs Starting Line up....