It wasn’t pretty, and the New York Knicks made it a lot tougher on themselves than they needed to, but New York was able to keep its winning streak alive while halting the Philadelphia 76ers’ own streak with a 85-79 win Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden.
New York improved to 6-4 behind the strength of 27 points and 9 rebounds from Carmelo Anthony and 20 points and 9 rebounds from Amar’e Stoudemire. The Knicks were able to open up a 17-point lead early in the fourth quarter but Philadelphia was resilient despite playing in their third game in as many nights. The Knicks obliged, turning the ball over 11 times in the fourth quarter to allow the Sixers to get to within four. But it wouldn’t get any closer.
On the surface it will look like a good defensive performance for the Knicks, and they were able to get some key stops at the end. But the tired Sixers — who entered the game as one of the best offensive teams in the league during the early season — shot poorly for the most part.
The rookie duo of Iman Shumpert and Josh Harrellson helped the Knicks jump out to the big lead. Harrellson connected on three 3-pointers and finished the game as a +12. Shumpert showed himself to be a little over-aggressive at times, but still used his energy to the tune of 10 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals and played a team-high 38 minutes.
The Knicks hit the road immediately and take on the 3-6 Memphis Grizzlies on the road on Thursday.