New York Knicks @ Charlotte Bobcats
New York Knicks (12-4) travel south to face the Charlotte Bobcats (7-9) at 7 p.m. (ET)
The New York Knicks will begin their three game road stint tonight as they take on the Charlotte Bobcats at Time Warner Cable Arena. After suffering a close lost to the Brooklyn Nets, the Knicks have reeled off three straight wins. Their most recent victory over Phoenix came on the heels of a 34 point effort by Carmelo Anthony, the league’s second leading scorer.
With a 1.5 game lead over their Atlantic Division rival Brooklyn Nets, the Knicks know that each game counts. Head coach Mike Woodson understands that every team in the NBA is tough, and doesn’t expect his guys to overlook tonight’s matchup against the Charlotte Bobcats.
"Every game is not going to be a runaway or blowout for us and you have got to give them credit. They played hard, they were scrapping down the stretch and made a game out of it," Knicks coach Mike Woodson said about the Suns. "At the end of the night, we closed it out and was able to get the 'W.' That's what counts." –Sports Network
After watching the Wizards stunning win over the Miami Heat last night, it comes as another reminder for the Knicks that they can’t just show up and expect to win, they better come to play.
The Bobcats have been surprisingly decent so far this season, even if their record fails to show it. Charlotte could have a .500 win percentage had they not blown an 18 point lead in the fourth quarter Monday against the Portland Trailblazers. It’s was a disappointing loss for the Bobcats, as they know they need to get better at closing games out.
It’s a learning process that may take time to figure out, but head coach Mike Dunlap is happy with his team’s overall effort. While the loss hurts, it did mark the return of the Gerald Henderson. Henderson, the Bobcats returning leading scorer from last season, had been dealing with a lingering foot injury that kept him out of the lineup for the past few weeks.
While the Bobcats have struggled to get wins on the road, they have been much better at home. They could have an even bigger advantage if their fans would bother to show up. They may need some extra support tonight if they have any chance at stopping the Knicks from extending their current losing streak to 5 games.
What to Watch For:
Carmelo Anthony has scored 29 points or more in 6 of his last 8 games and should have no problem lighting up a Bobcats team that ranks 29th in the league in points allowed.
Big man Tyson Chandler will be looking for his third straight double-double after averaging 13.5 points and 11.5 rebounds per game over his last two. Bobcats sharp shooting center/power forward Byron Mullens may give Chandler problems as he continues to stretch oposing team's frontcourt with his outside shooting.
Dubbed as the sixth man for the Bobcats, shooting guard Ben Gordon is having a fantastic year off the bench. Gordon has averaged a whopping 25 points per game over his last three while making 18 three pointers over that span.
Prediction: New York Knicks 106, Charlotte Bobcats 97
Where To Watch Online: NY Knicks at Charlotte Bobcats