In a season where little has gone right, the New York Knicks have managed to produce a few positive moments here and there.
The visiting Knicks look to build off one of those efforts while trying to hand the Philadelphia 76ers a fifth consecutive loss Monday night.
On pace to miss the playoffs for the sixth straight season and on the wrong end of numerous blowout losses in 2009-10, New York (23-43) is coming off one of its most memorable victories in some time. Bill Walker(notes) scored a career-high 23 points and Wilson Chandler(notes) added 22 as the Knicks snapped Dallas’ 13-game winning streak with a 128-94 road win Saturday night.
The Knicks shot 56.2 percent and avenged a 50-point loss to the Mavericks in January by winning for the fourth time in 18 games.
“A lot of teams look at the schedule and say, ‘Oh, that’s the Knicks. That’s a win.’ But we’ve got to come out and compete every night,” said New York rookie guard Toney Douglas(notes), who’s scored 40 points and shot 16 of 23 in his last two games.
The victory should give New York some confidence as it tries to win consecutive games in Philadelphia for the first time since April 3-Dec. 17, 2004. David Lee(notes) scored 24 points and Chandler had 18 as the Knicks snapped a nine-game road skid against the 76ers with a 93-92 win on Jan. 13.
Walker was toiling on the bench with Boston in January, but he’s starting to play well after being traded to New York last month in a deal that sent disgruntled guard Nate Robinson(notes) to the Celtics. The second-year swingman is averaging 11.4 points in 11 games with his new team, and he’s scored 22.0 per game while shooting 17 of 25 in his last two contests.
“It’s been fun,” Walker told the Knicks’ official Web site about playing in New York. “I’ve always dreamed about playing on a big stage like this, and I’m just happy I can get the chance. It was frustrating a bit not getting the chance to show myself, but it is part of the business and I just had to stay ready. Now it’s paying off.”
A first-time All-Star this season, Lee is averaging a career-high 20.2 points per game and 22.0 in his last two road games against Philadelphia.
While New York is hoping to string some wins together, the struggling 76ers (23-43) would settle for one. Philadelphia has lost nine of 10 after falling 104-91 at Miami on Sunday.
Swingman Jason Kapono(notes) had a team-leading 17 points off the bench and Andre Iguodala(notes) added 15 as the 76ers shot 37.2 percent. Philadelphia is giving up an average of 106.4 points while losing 10 of 12.
“It was nice to be able to contribute,” said Kapono, who’s averaging 4.2 points in his first season with the 76ers. “I just wish we could have won.”
Iguodala is averaging a team-leading 17.0 points on the season, but he was held to four against the Knicks in January after scoring a season-high 32 in a 141-127 overtime win at New York on Oct. 31.