|AP Photo/Darron Cummings|
By Kenneth Teape (@teapester725)
Saturday, May 18th, 2013
Game 6 Recap
Final Score: New York Knicks: 99 Indiana Pacers: 106
The Knicks season has come to an end with a loss in Game 6 against the Pacers Saturday night, ending what was their best season in a long time. It was a tough ending to the season as there were high expectations for the Knicks coming into the season but they did improve upon their prior season for the third consecutive year, so hopefully they will build upon this one next season. For tonight the effort was just not there consistently enough as it could have easily been a blowout in the Pacers favor if not for a big night from Carmelo Anthony and an inspired stretch in the third quarter when the Knicks got hot. Questionable coaching decision by head coach Mike Woodson and some interesting calls for the referees were too much for the Knicks to overcome on the court as their season game to a disappointing end in Indiana. The Knicks will start their offseason program while the Pacers will move onto the Eastern Conference Finals to take on the Miami Heat.
- Of the Knicks tonight Anthony was the one who looked most like he was not ready to see the season end. For much of the game he was the only person the Knicks could count on on the offensive end, as he carried the Knicks with 39 points on 15 of 29 shooting from the field and perfect eight of eight from the foul line. Anthony added seven rebounds as well as he did everything he could on the offensive end to keep the Knicks in the game. Anthony got it going in towards the end of the first quarter and into the second quarter as he made five shots in a row after starting the game zero for three. It was a spirited effort from Anthony who just did not get enough help on the offensive end for the Knicks to take it out.
- Iman Shumpert led a furious comeback in the third quarter, knocking down three threes in a row to bring the Knicks back into the game after falling behind by double-digits. Shumpert had a huge third quarter overall, scoring 16 of his 19 points in that frame. Shumpert knocked down five of his six three point attempts, adding three rebounds as well and his normal great defense before fouling out after only 25 minutes played. Shumpert has looked better and better as the season has gone on and it will be a pleasure to watch him next season after a full training camp and not having to rehab an injury, instead being able to work on his game.
- Raymond Felton was unable to give the Knicks anything tonight, as he had his worst game this post season going zero for seven from the field and scoring only two points. Felton did add six assists and three rebounds, but was unable to give the Knicks that added scoring option as he was stifled as the pick-and-roll game was not as effective with Chandler being ineffective. Felton wasn't the only point guard to struggle as Jason Kidd's scoreless streak continued, giving him 10 games in a row without a point. There is a chance that Kidd may never again score a point in his career as retirement talks have surrounded Kidd throughout the end of the season.
- The three point shooting tonight was the only reason the Knicks were even in the game in the first place. The Knicks knocked down 13 of 30 three point attempts in the game, good for 43.3 percent. The Knicks were lucky they hit a hot streak in the second half, knocking down eight of nine at one point; otherwise the Pacers would have blown them out. The Knicks struggled inside the three point line, going 21 of 55 inside the arc.
- The Pacers were able to expose many of the Knicks deficiencies in the game tonight. One being their lack of offense; had the Knicks not gotten hot from deep they would have been blown out. Going 21 of 55 inside the arc is unacceptable and not a winning formula. The lack of inside scoring presence was front and center throughout the series for the Knicks who struggled from the floor all series.
- The numbers at the end of the game aren’t awful, but the Knicks were once again hammered on the boards by the Pacers. The Pacers ended the game with a 43-36 edge in the rebounding, but started the game with a much bigger edge as the Knicks didn’t grab their first rebound until the seven minute mark of the first quarter.
- One reason for the huge rebounding disadvantage was the play of Tyson Chandler. He was awful throughout the series and once again tonight as he was sorely outplayed by Roy Hibbert. Chandler just did not have it against the Pacers and really throughout the playoffs as he looked lost at times and was unable to slow Hibbert down, a big reason the Pacers took the series.
- Another player that dominated the Knicks tonight was Brooklyn native Lance Stephenson. Stephenson played quite possibly the best game of his career, scoring 25 points on nine of 13 shooting, including 10 rebounds, three assists and a steal that led to an and-one to break a 92-all tie and put the Pacers back ahead. Stephenson bullied the Knicks all night as there was no one able to slow him down from attacking the paint and getting to the basket at will. Hard fouls from Chandler did not slow Stephenson down as he kept attacking and really hurt the Knicks tonight.
- The foul and free throw disparity tonight were so lopsided they were comical. On the night, the Knicks attempted only 18 free throws, making them all on 16 Pacer personal fouls compared to 46 attempts, 34 which were made on 34 Knick fouls. That kind of disparity is unheard of especially in the playoffs, as the Knicks were on the wrong side of a lot of 50/50 and questionable calls.
- Mike Woodson has put himself squarely on the hot seat; being as stubborn as ever he really cost the Knicks the series. He continued to use Chandler on Hibbert even though he was being dominated while he had a capable defender in Marcus Camby on the bench. He also showed too much trust in J.R. Smith, who struggled yet again in going four of 15 from the field for 15 points. Woodson took too long to go to players such as Chris Copeland and it cost the Knicks in the playoffs and possibly his job. Woodson was unable to make adjustments in the series and continued his poor performances in the playoffs as a head coach.