KNICKS STOP THE HEAT, SO BRING ON THE CELTICS- MIAMI — The Knicks beat a recent N.B.A.
champion and the worst team in the Eastern Conference on Saturday
night. The Miami Heat own each of those identities, so the Knicks can
choose what to make of the outcome.Nate Robinson had 19 points and 6 rebounds for the Knicks. The Heat lost its 13th in a row.
N.B.A.They mostly chose to enjoy their 88-84 victory for what it was — the
final exclamation point on the best week of a terrible season.
The Knicks (13-27) wiped out a 10-point deficit, played gritty defense
throughout the fourth quarter and sent the reeling Heat to a 13th
consecutive defeat. The Knicks, who were
recently neck and neck with Miami (8-31) for the worst record in the
East, won for the fourth time in five games.That’s the key.”
The Knicks were playing their fourth game in five nights and their fifth game in seven nights. Crawford played 44 minutes and finished with 22 points, 7 assists and 5 rebounds. David Lee had his best game in weeks, with 15 points and 8 rebounds — the last of which secured the victory.And Jared Jeffries, who only recently rejoined the rotation, provided
the critical, harassing defense against the All-Star Dwyane Wade in the
fourth quarter. Wade missed 5 of 7 shots in the period, including a
potential tying 3-pointer with 6.
9 seconds left. Wade finished with 22
points, but went 7 for 23 from the field.
“It was an off night for me today,” said Wade, who has struggled to
regain his form after off-season knee and shoulder operations.
“Physically, I was not in it.”
After trailing by as many as 10 points, the Knicks used a 15-4 run to
take a 72-71 lead with 9 minutes 48 seconds left in the game, their
first since early in the first quarter. Robinson and Randolph hit consecutive jumpers to give the Knicks an 83-79 lead with 1:01 to play. But Crawford hit two more free throws, and the Knicks escaped with the victory. “We’ve just got to stay with it.”
The Knicks fell behind early but hung around in the first half and
received a big jolt of energy from Robinson late in the second quarter.“As far as the minutes, they’ve been a little more
inconsistent this year,” Lee said, pointing to the Knicks’ heavy
reliance on Eddy Curry and Zach Randolph.