|New York vs Utah|
|98 - 90|
Jamal Crawford scored 28 points and Stephon Marbury had 22 points and seven assists as New York snapped a seven-game losing streak with a 98-90 victory over the Utah Jazz on Friday night.
"We just wanted to get off that losing streak," Marbury said. "Everybody came out focused and ready to play on both ends of the court. It was great. We were very aggressive tonight."
Gordan Giricek had 19 points and Matt Harpring added 15 for Utah, which finished a 1-4 road trip. Milt Palacio scored 13 points and Mehmet Okur and Robert Whaley added 11 apiece.
New York (7-18) made all the big hustle plays in the fourth quarter, including one when Crawford stole the ball while falling down and knocked it to Marbury, who made a layup to make it 87-78 with 5:49 left.
After Harpring made a pair of free throws to bring the Jazz within 91-85 with 3:09 left, Crawford hit a 3-pointer 21 seconds later. Marbury then made two shots from the free throw line another minute later to give the Knicks their biggest lead at 96-85.
"You look at me and see 28 points and Steph 22, but our big guys are setting really good screens," Crawford said. "Mo Taylor, Malik (Rose), Antonio (Davis) and Jerome (James), all of those guys are getting us open, which makes it easier for us."
New York, which snapped a five-game home skid, avoided losing six straight at home for the first time in 19 years.
"We got pretty good shots and we took care of the ball for the most part better than we have been," Knicks coach Larry Brown said. "We got to the free throw line, had a lot of dribble penetration, which is what we're trying to do."
The Knicks, who trailed by double digits at the end of each quarter of a 109-96 loss against San Antonio on Wednesday night, led at the end of each period against Utah.
The Knicks swept a season series from Jazz for second straight time, and have won four straight meetings after losing 12 of the previous 15.
Though the Jazz outrebounded the Knicks 40-27, Utah coach Jerry Sloan was displeased with the 12 offensive rebounds his team allowed.
"We couldn't keep people in front of us," Sloan said. "Crawford was terrific. He hit a couple of big shots down the stretch."
New York took its first lead of the game at 21-19 on Crawford's 15-footer with 3 seconds left in the first quarter.
Utah (11-16) started strong in the second, and took a 26-23 lead on Devin Brown's free throw with 8:42 left. However, the Knicks rebounded again with a 12-4 run to take a 35-30 lead on Crawford's three-point play with 6½ minutes remaining in the first half.
The Jazz scored seven straight points, including two layups and a free throw by Whaley, to regain the lead.
Marbury made two free throws and Quentin Richardson a layup to give the Knicks a 47-43 lead with 11 seconds left. Whaley's dunk 7 seconds later brought the Jazz within two at the half.
Brown was looking to get some veteran leadership in the starting lineup, and replaced rookie Channing Frye with Davis.
"Those guys are veterans ... Malik, Antonio are calming influences on the young guys," Crawford said.
Frye received some applause when he entered the game with about 4 minutes left in the first quarter. He finished with seven points and three rebounds in just under 10 minutes.
Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko missed his third straight game due to back spasms. Kirilenko, averaging 12.2 points and 7.8 rebounds, sat out seven games last month with a sprained right ankle. Carlos Boozer and C.J. Miles were also inactive for Utah. ... New York center Eddy Curry missed his fourth straight game due to an ankle injury. Penny Hardaway and Jackie Butler were also inactive for the Knicks. ... Knicks guard Nate Robinson returned from a two-game absence, and was scoreless in 4½ minutes... Celebrities in the crowd included actors Matthew Modine, Lindsay Lohan, Peter Boyle, Chloe Sevigny, Jamie Hector and Mike Jordan, and rapper Cam'ron.