MSG Analyst and former NBA player Kelly Tripucka said it best: the Knicks, the NBA’s road warriors, are quickly making roadkill out of teams away from home. Today was no different as the Knicks defeated the Raptors, 116-99.
Wilson Chandler (still starting in place of the injured Ronny Turiaf) and company jumped out to an early lead by scoring 34 points in the first quarter. The Raptors had no answer for Chandler from the start, as he was left in the corner to drain multiple three point shots as the Knicks took control of the game.
Although the Raptors fought back all the way through the 4th quarter, cutting a lead that the Knicks expanded to 16 points all the way down to 7, it just wasn’t enough as the Knicks won their 7th straight and 9th overall game on the road.
The Raptors’ ongoing resilience was led by the scrappy Amir Johnson, who grabbed a career-high 16 rebounds on his way to scoring a season-high 22 points. Johnson, however, was left with little help as the Knicks pulled ahead.
Amar’e Stoudemire continued his dominance during his team’s remarkable streak, scoring 31 points and grabbing 16 boards. Chandler finished with 21 points.
The NBA’s “Rookie of the Month” for November, Landry Fields added a double-double as well with 15 points and 10 rebounds as well. Raymond Felton stayed consistent with 18 points and 8 assists.
Rounding out the Knicks’ balanced attack, however, was none other than the man who beat out Patrick Ewing Jr for the team’s final roster spot: Shawne Williams.
For the second straight game, Williams scored in double figures, this time with 14, as he continued to make his case to earn a steady spot in the rotation.
The Knicks have always known Williams can shoot, as he is often praised in practice. Besides shooting 4 for 4 from downtown, Williams’ fluidity with the other players in the team’s rotation has been impressive. He has only boosted the already existing chemistry while fitting in seamlessly.
Noticeably not playing today, in wake of Williams’ emergence was Bill Walker, who may lose his spot in the rotation once Turiaf returns. Timofey Mozgov (although he scored 6 points) could also be in jeopardy of losing his spot as well, as he has had ongoing problems holding onto the ball during games.
The Knicks will look to continue their winning ways, this time at home, as the Timberwolves come to town Monday night.