Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Knicks Get Thunder Struck

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Knicks Get Thunder Struck

Article excerpt

OKLAHOMA CITY - The Knicks were without Carmelo Anthony because of a sprained right ankle, but even with his injury he might have been able to move better than his teammates did on defense.

Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder shredded what the Knicks considered defense in a 104-92 demolition at Chesapeake Energy Arena. The Thunder took pleasure in doing it, too.

Throughout the game, All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook carried on and his histrionics - stomping and blowing on his fingers as if they were guns -- should have motivated the Knicks. But they were completely out of it from midway through the second quarter on and suffered a second-straight humiliating road loss.

The Knicks (6-6) allowed 70 points in the first half and trailed by 23 at halftime. They let the hole balloon to 31 in the third quarter. On Thursday, the Knicks fell behind by 25 in Memphis.

The Knicks return home to play the Orlando Magic on Monday and there is no guarantee Anthony will be able to play in that game. If he doesn't, the Knicks could face a third consecutive ugly defeat if they don't improve their play on both ends.

Of course, the Knicks said without Anthony they still had enough to beat Kevin Durant and the Thunder, who own the Western Conference's best record. But the Knicks would have needed to play shut-down defense and for Amar'e Stoudemire to carry them.

But Stoudemire struggled. He scored 14 points, on 7-for-19 shooting, and had five turnovers and four fouls. Tyson Chandler also had 14 points, as he shot 3-for-3 from the field and 8-for-8 from the line.

Bill Walker started for Anthony and finished with three points on 1-for-7 shooting. Overall, the Knicks were 34-for-83 from the field, including 5-for-19 from three. Remarkably, they were even less efficient and effective on the defensive end.

Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni was asked before the game how he planned to try to contain Durant. …

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