In what turned out to be a scrimmage before their nationally televised matchup with the Miami Heat on Sunday, the Knicks completely destroyed the Washington Wizards Friday night at MSG, 103-65. J.R. Smith led New York with 23 points and six assists off the bench. The Wizards were led by Jordan Crawford’s 17 points.
The Wizards are in full tank mode and it was evident from the start. A measly 13 points on 6-for-21 shooting and six turnovers in the first quarter set them on their way. Baron Davis, celebrating his 33rd birthday, scored the game’s first points with a three-pointer and the Knicks never looked back, finishing the period up 26-13.
In the second quarter, the Knicks would extend the lead to 19 on a Steve Novak three with 7:36 remaining. Then, the planets aligned and the Wizards went on a 13-0 run to cut a 34-15 deficit to just 34-28. The Knicks would pull it together, going on a 20-5 run to end the half up 54-33.
From there, it was garbage time. With the huge lead, coach Mike Woodson was able to give most of the second half minutes to the bench. The Knicks still outscored Washington 49-32 in the half. At one point, having scored just 47 points with 7:55, the crowd began chanting, “47″, mocking Washington’s low points production. A J.R. Smith three-pointer gave the Knicks a 43-point lead with 1:49 left in the game before the Wizards managed to score five to end the game and save themselves the embarrassment of losing by 40+.
Three Knicks scored 18 points (Carmelo Anthony, Steve Novak and Baron Davis). Tyson Chandler hauled in 15 rebounds, six of them on the offensive end. For the Wizards, last year’s no. 1 overall pick John Wall had just eight points on 2-for-12 shooting and seven turnovers. He did give Baron Davis a birthday gift in the third quarter.
Rookie guard and defensive specialist Iman Shumpert sustained an ankle sprain in the third quarter and is currently listed as day-to-day. Shumpert would be a huge loss to the Knicks on Sunday, as he would be the man primarily guarding Dwayne Wade.
The win, combined with losses by the 76ers, Celtics, AND Magic have put the Knicks in 7th place in the Eastern Conference. They find themselves three games behind the Celtics for the Atlantic Division lead. It also leaves them three behind Orlando, which received news today that Dwight Howard will be out for the next 14-16 days. The race is on in the Eastern Conference playoff hunt.