Knicks Not Interested in Consolation Prizes

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Byline: Mike McGraw Daily Herald Sports Writer

The team that was deemed too far past its prime to compete with the Bulls, instead kept a nervous United Center crowd on the edge of their seats Sunday.

The New York Knicks, however, are unimpressed.

"I don't want to send messages," said Hubert Davis. "I want to win. I think messages are overrated. They knew we were a good team before the series even started."

"We didn't come in here to say we were going to be in the game," said Anthony Mason. "We want to win the game. I'm tired of people talking. We knew it wasn't going to be easy (for the Bulls)."

There were times when the Bulls seemed to be toying with the New Yorkers. But that ended when the Knicks held the home team scoreless for a five-minute stretch of the third quarter.

The resulting 13-0 run evened the score at 65-65 with 2:57 remaining in the third.

With 4:07 on the clock, the Knicks were still within 83-82 but the Bulls finally finished their fourth-straight playoff victory with an 8-2 surge.

"I was proud of our effort," said New York coach Jeff Van Gundy. "We competed hard and put ourselves in a position to win in the fourth quarter. Our one main problem was not getting the rebound after a good defensive stand. Eighteen offensive rebounds is too many."

One thing the Knicks didn't see as a problem were the 44 points scored by Michael Jordan.

The New York game plan was to not waste energy trying to stop the unstoppable.

"As many touches as he gets, you're not going to stop him," Derek Harper said. "Our game plan isn't to stop Michael. …