Just when people were about to jump all over the Knicks, they come out with that performance? The Knicks 95-90 victory over the Cavs was a small sample of what is possible if everything can come together for them in the right way. Granted, they are not going to play the way they did last night every time out there, as Wednesday's opening game showed when they were trounced by the Chicago Bulls, 104-80. Nevertheless, the Knicks forced 8 Lebron James turnovers last night and made the Cavs big 3 look uncomfortable all game.
The Knicks deserved to be bashed after there opening night performance, but regarding last night, the Knicks deserve all the credit in the world. Nobody gave them a chance, including me. They went into Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, where the atmosphere was second to none with the homecoming of Lebron James, and silenced the crowd. Carmelo Anthony finally lived up to his contract, as he hit a dagger from the baseline with under 30 seconds to go, putting the Knicks up 5. For once, it was a Knick hitting the big shot.
Performances from Jason Smith and Iman Shumpert should not go unnoticed, as they both netted 12 points in the first win of Derek Fisher's young coaching career. Quincy Acy was all over the glass and had a highlight dunk that seemed to spark the Knicks. One thing of note was the quickness of PG Shane Larkin. He seemed to be all over the floor, forcing turnovers with his quickness and good hands. As Melo' said after the game,"It was a total team effort."
Could the Knicks come out and get destroyed by the Charlotte Hornets on Sunday? They very well could. But one thing is evident, and that is the ship is going to be run tightly by Derek Fisher and Phil Jackson. The players seem to be out to prove something, and Carmelo looks rejuvenated. It is going to be a season of ups and downs as the brain trust is still trying to figure out who can play and who wants to be a Knick. Wednesday was a big down, but last night was a huge up.
Hopefully, there are more ups than downs this season….