(Sports Network) - The New York Knicks are one of only three teams in the NBA
with an unblemished record at home and look to keep it that way when they host
the Phoenix Suns Sunday afternoon from Madison Square Garden.
New York is 6-0 on its home floor and has won eight in a row at MSG dating
back to last season. The Knicks were in action in front of the home crowd
Friday night and disposed of the Washington Wizards 108-87 behind 20 points
from both Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith.
Tyson Chandler posted his fourth double-double of the season, finishing with
12 points and 10 rebounds, for the Knicks, who have won two in a row and three
of four games. The Knicks held the Wizards to 41 second-half points and their
lead never fell below double digits over the last two quarters.
Pablo Prigioni filled in for veteran guard Jason Kidd (back) and posted eight
points and five assists. Kidd missed his third straight game with back spasms
and is out indefinitely.
"Pablo's a giving type of player," said Knicks coach Mike Woodson. "He's a
pass first guy, all the players love that."
The last time New York started 7-0 at home was back in 1992-93, when it began
the season with nine straight victories as the host.
After Sunday's game versus the Suns, the Knicks, who are fourth in the NBA
with 102.7 ppg and lead the Atlantic Division, will begin a three-game road
trip Wednesday against Charlotte, Miami and Chicago. In other team news,
Anthony is third in the league with 26.1 ppg and leads the NBA with 10.1 ppg
in the first quarter. The Knicks average an NBA-best 27.5 points in the first
12 minutes of play.
Anthony has led the team in scoring in 14 of the first 15 games this season,
and has posted 20-plus points 14 times.
Phoenix hasn't had much success on its season-long, six-game road trip (1-3),
but will try to stun the Knickerbockers on their home floor. The losing ways
continued for the Suns in Friday's 101-97 setback at Toronto, where Marcin
Gortat, Shannon Brown and Jared Dudley scored 14 points apiece.
"I thought that we played well and that the game could have gone both ways,"
Suns coach Alvin Gentry said. "They made plays at the end of the game. I
thought we did a great job moving the ball tonight, we just didn't make plays
at the end of the game."
Goran Dragic and Michael Beasley scored 13 and 12 points, respectively, for
Phoenix, which is 2-7 away from the desert and will close out the road swing
Tuesday against Memphis. Dragic is the only Suns player with at least 10
points in every game this season.
Phoenix may have trouble stopping Anthony and the Knicks because it is
allowing an NBA-high 102.5 ppg this season.
The Suns won the only meeting with New York during the lockout shortened
campaign, posting a 91-88 triumph Jan. 18. Phoenix has won three of four and
12 of the previous 16 meetings with the Knicks.
The Sports Network