Knicks Roll, Beat Sixers, 98-91

first_imgTweetPinShare0 Shares PHILADELPHIA — Led by Carmelo Anthony, New York is at last on the right kind of streak.Anthony had 27 points and 11 rebounds to lead the New York Knicks past the Philadelphia 76ers 98-91 on Jan. 21.The worst team in the Eastern Conference is suddenly on a hot streak. New York snapped its 16-game losing streak Jan. 19 with a win against New Orleans and made it two straight with the victory against the lowly Sixers.The Knicks won consecutive games for the first time since Oct. 30-Nov. 2.“Guys are still having fun with the game and not letting our record keep us down,” Anthony said. “We’re still enjoying the game of basketball.”The Sixers’ eight wins are only one more than New York’s total, and each team is battling to better its odds to win the No. 1 pick in the draft lottery.Knicks President Phil Jackson tried to tell Knicks fans better times were ahead by building around Anthony. The Sixers started the season on a 17-game losing streak and have been open about a rebuilding process that included holding a bounty of draft picks.The teams instead played in game that was billed as “Tank Bowl.”Sixers rookie center Nerlens Noel was sent home with an illness and their 2014 No. 3 overall pick Joel Embiid has not played this season.New York (92.7) and Philadelphia (90.0) entered at the bottom of the league in scoring averages and labored to even crack 80 in this one until a surge in the final minutes.The Knicks let a 14-point lead be sliced to three on Michael Carter-Williams’ fast-break layup with 7 minutes left. MCW — as he’s known around the league — had 25 points by that time but it came on 9 of 23 shooting. He finished with 27.“I was just trying to keep us in the game,” Carter-Williams said. “I was trying to keep it close and hopefully at the end we could squeeze it out.”Not this time.Carter-Williams had one less option on offense with Noel out with the upper respiratory infection. Noel griped after a Jan. 19 blowout loss at Washington that the offense had become stagnant and the Sixers have “to be able to reward our big guys.”Coach Brett Brown said passing always remained a point of emphasis, though the responsibility, “will always be dropped on the point guard’s doorstep.”He also downplayed any hint of a rift between two of Philadelphia’s projected cornerstones.“It’s two friends trying to figure it out. It’s healthy,” Brown said. “These guys, they amazingly get along and coexist on buses and locker rooms and all that. Just sometimes, they don’t pass to each other. They’re so tunnel visioned, it’s not that they’re selfish.”Both the Knicks and 76ers insist they are not tanking, fielding a noncompetitive roster in hopes of bettering the odds for high draft picks and potential franchise players. The likely prize this year is Duke center Jahlil Okafor.Anthony opened the second half with consecutive 3s that helped the Knicks build a 61-47 lead. Robert Covington pulled the Sixers to 91-87 on a 3-pointer with 1:30 left that at least ensured that the few thousand fans that turned out would get a competitive finish.Langston Galloway, who starred at nearby Saint Joseph’s, ended the threat of a comeback with a 3 from the corner that made it 96-89 and produced a nice roar from the Knicks fans that always make the short trip to Philly.“I had to get one up real quick and it went down for me,” Galloway said.(DAN GELSTON, AP Sports Writer)last_img read more

Bruins Skate Past Islanders, 2-1

first_imgBOSTON — Loui Eriksson quickly found a puck near his skates and Tuukka Rask seemed to see every shot all night.Eriksson scored the go-ahead goal with 7:34 left in the third period and Rask stopped 39 shots to lift the surging Boston Bruins to a 2-1 victory over the New York Islanders on Feb. 7 for their ninth win in 12 games.“It’s one of many lately,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said of Rask’s night. “He’s been in a zone, really good for us and focused and intense. He’s not afraid to yell at the players around him if they’re not doing their job. He’s just been a determined athlete for us the last little while. It’s made a big difference for our hockey team.”Patrice Bergeron added a first-period, power-play goal for the Bruins, who have collected points in 14 of their last 16 games (10-2-4).The red-hot Bruins now have a showdown with rival Montreal on Feb. 8. Rask has been carrying a heavy load of games lately, but didn’t say if he’ll be facing the Canadiens, who have beaten Boston all three times this season after eliminating them in seven games in last spring’s playoffs.“If they want me to play, I’ll play,” he said. “It doesn’t matter to me. Nobody’s told me otherwise, so I’m sure I’ll be playing. Hopefully I’ll get a win so I don’t have to answer any questions.”John Tavares had a power-play goal for the Islanders, who have lost four of five. Former Bruin Chad Johnson made 34 saves.“I’m really just proud of the effort we had in here tonight,” Islanders coach Jack Capuano said. “We played a solid game against a good hockey team. We had some chances, but we have to find a way to score some goals.”Eriksson scored the winner out of a scramble in front when he spun around and sent a backhand shot under Johnson’s left arm.“I was able to find it,” Eriksson said. “I think I was able to get a shot first and was able to find it at my feet. I was able to put it in. It was nice.”The teams traded first-period power-play goals, but were scoreless in the second in a contest that featured many good scoring chances and plenty of open-ice breakouts.Tavares one-timed a rebound past Rask from the bottom of the left circle 9:06 into the game for his team-leading 24th goal.But that’s all they could get against Rask.“It’s tough to win when you score one or two against these guys,” Islanders defenseman and former Bruin Johnny Boychuk said.Bergeron tied it 4:06 later when he collected Michael Grabner’s errant clearing pass in the slot and fired a wrister over Johnson, who was on his stomach after making a save on a shot.Both goaltenders made nice stops early in the second. Rask flashed his left pad, robbing Anders Lee’s close bid, and Johnson made two good saves on Carl Soderberg, who cut in front for a shot and turned and had a rebound chance.The Bruins had an excellent scoring chance early in the third, but Daniel Paille’s backhander sailed over the wide-open side of the net to Johnson’s left at the end of a 2-on-1 break.Seconds later, the Islanders went on a power play after Brad Marchand was whistled for high sticking, but Rask made a few stops to keep it tied.(KEN POWTAK)TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more