The Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks have been flip-flopping all season long. One week, the Nets will win a few games in a row while the Knicks lose a few. The following week, the Nets will lose a few while the Knicks do the opposite.
Since the start of the new year, the Nets have been on a roll both offensively and defensively. The only team to reach 100 points against them was the Atlanta Hawks, and that was because the Nets threw the bench in and let up defensively to put on a show for the London fans. The Nets currently sit in the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference and have the look of a team that has plans to move higher.
The Knicks are having issues both on and off the court. Off the court, they are dealing with suspensions and fines concerning their second go-to scorer J.R. Smith. He is also having run-ins with Mike Woodson and might soon find his way out of town if he can’t control himself.
On the court, they must find a way to help take the offensive and defensive pressure off of Carmelo Anthony. He is having another great year, but he will wear down soon if he doesn’t get any help. The Knicks have lost three straight after winning five straight, and are in jeopardy of falling deeper in the standings.
No matter their records are, this will be a highly-contested game because of the atmosphere. This is New York and whenever these two teams get together, it feels like an NCAA tournament game. Madison Square Garden will be rocking with blue and orange clashing with black and gray. The stars will be out as though this is the Staples Center. The Knicks took the first meeting 113-83, so the Nest have payback in mind.
I expect the Knicks to come out hot early as they have a point to prove to the NBA, but the defense of the Nets will prevail in the end.