After being up by nine points in the third quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves, the New York Knicks lost the lead once again due to sloppy defense for the second straight game. The Knicks defense was once again horrific in the second half of the game, which was the third straight time where they lost the lead or have seen it shrunk considerably.
In the fourth quarter, they came back with a 13-3 run late, and took the lead with two and a half minutes left. However, just as fast as they got the lead, they lost it.
The lackluster defensive effort created lackluster offense. The team kept chucking the ball up instead of taking the time to get off a decent shot. Carmelo Anthony was at the team’s rescue, as he hit a shot with a minute and a half left in the game to give the Knicks the lead once again, and they didn’t look back.
Even without Kevin Love, the Timberwolves fought to the end, which showed they could seriously contend for wins against top NBA teams if each of their players does just a little more in each game. Four of the team’s five starters scored over 15 points, which is plenty more than the Knicks could say, considering their only scorer over 15 points was Anthony because the rest of the team was mediocre all evening.
The Knicks shouldn’t have had to come from behind to beat a team that now holds a record of 18-29, and nowhere in contention of being in the playoffs. The lack of defense could be caused by the team’s age, as some players just simply can’t play the minutes which they used to play in the prime of their careers, but Mike Woodson has to find a way to prevent the defense from collapsing late in games.
Joseph Wolkin can be followed on Twitter at @JosephNASCAR.