The New York Knicks will get a stiff test tonight at home when they host one of the NBA’s elite teams, the Dallas Mavericks.
The Knicks are winners of three straight at win and hope to snap the Mavericks five game winning streak. New York is coming off a 124-106 against the Detroit Pistons. It was a close game for three quarters as the score was tied at 81. But in the fourth quarter, the team picked up the intensity on the defensive end as they outscored Detroit, 33-15.
The Knickerbockers were ledy by Amar’e Stoudemire with 33 points and got a shocking contribution from Timofey Mozgov. The Russian exploded for 23 points and 14 rebounds in 40 minutes of action. He had not played in New York’s previous 10 games but his sudden rise of playing time was due to the fact that Wilson Chandler was out with an injury, Shawne Williams was suspended, Ronny Turiaf’s foul trouble.
Mozgov should get some minutes tonight against a Mavericks team that has some size in the middle with Tyson Chandler. Chandler. Chandler stands at 7’2′ and is averaging 10.1 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. However, D’Antoni has not indicated anything what he plans to do with Mozgov but admits it will be hard to sit him down.
“I don’t think you do,” D’Antoni said. “He’ll play some. We’ll just see how the rotation goes. I don’t know yet. But somehow he’s got to be able to play.”
Despite the great game from Mozgov, D’Antoni said he will continue to start Ronny Turiaf at center. The Knicks’ bench should be back in full strength tonight. Wilson Chandler will be back after a two-game absence due to a calf injury, but D’Antoni said he won’t play his normal 35 minutes. The Knicks will also have Shawne Wiliams back from his one game suspension. Whether D’Antoni will continue his nine man rotation of Stoudemire, Turiaf, Chandler and Williams, along with Raymond Felton, Landry Fields, Danilo Gallinari, Toney Douglas and Bill Walker remains to be seen. Will he use a 10 man rotation or will someone lose minutes because of Mozgov’s emergence.
New York will look for some payback for the home fans against the Mavericks. Dallas handed the team their worst home loss in history with a 128-78 demolishing. They would get their revenge later in the season when they went into Dallas and crushed the Mavs, 128-94.
When: 7:30 PM
New York (25-22)
PG- Raymond Felton
SG- Landry Fields
SF- Danillo Ganillari
PF- Wilson Chandler
C- Amar’e Stoudemire
PG- Jason Kidd
SF- Shawn Marion?
PF- Dirk Nowitzki
C- Tyson Chandler