Knicks Ready To Lean On Deke & Penny

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Hardaway scored a season-high 21 (as a Knick) in Tuesday's rout of Chicago, while Mutombo, in his second game back off the IL, had 14 boards and four blocks in 30 surprisingly spry minutes.

Hardaway, who's averaged 11.6 points and 5.4 boards in his last seven games, had said he hoped his role would grow in the playoffs.

He's convinced the experience he and Mutombo hold will be key.

"We're going to be important because we've been there before," said Hardaway. "We both went to the Finals. We have that experience of winning games in crucial situations. We're definitely going to have to take our games to another level. There is value in that [experience].

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