The stress level is up in New York — the Knicks have dropped five games in a row, and in each of those games have given up more than 100 points. It doesn’t help that they are falling while that team across the Brooklyn Bridge is suddenly surging and is in the playoff mix right now.
The Knicks latest loss came at Madison Square Garden Wednesday night to the Philadelphia 76ers (110-106), and while it didn’t seem things could get worse at the end they did when Carmelo Anthony cussed at a fan, reports the New York Post.
In the final minutes of another disastrous Knicks loss, a boisterous fan shouted at Carmelo Anthony “Nice defense, Melo.” According to an eyewitness, Anthony shot back “Go f— yourself,” drawing a reaction from other fans in the area.
After the game, a fan on Twitter wrote “Carmelo told me to F off. Huge Philly fan and I got in his head.”
Anthony would not discuss the incident after the game. If the league can find video or can otherwise confirm this, ‘Melo can expect a healthy fine to come his way.
The Knicks are now 0-3 on an eight game home stand (and 10-of-11 at home). This is when they needed to make a push to climb back into the playoff hunt in the East (it’s not that hard to get back in the race, even at 15-27 they are three games out of the eight seed).
The Knicks defense is not letting them — in their last five games they have allowed 116.5 points per 100 possessions, 10 more than their season average and ranked dead last in the NBA.
That is not going to win you games, no matter what your offense does.
Report: Khris Middleton could return to Bucks before All-Star break
Sources told ESPN.com the Bucks think Middleton, who suffered a hamstring tear just days before the season began, “has a chance” to return to the lineup during a three-game homestand next month before the All-Star break.
Whether Middleton ultimately makes his season debut before or after the All-Star Game, he is expected to be kept on a minutes restriction as he eases way his back from the injury, sources said.
The Bucks have started Tony Snell, who has held his own as an outside shooter. But Middleton will upgrade Milwaukee on Snell’s biggest strength and provide massive defensive improvement. After a strong start, the Bucks have really struggled lately on that end.
Giannis Antetokounmpo has led Milwaukee to a 20-21 record, though the team is better than its won-loss mark indicates. The Bucks will be even better with Middleton, who will rival Jabari Parker as their second-best player and fit seamlessly.
Isaiah Thomas nutmegs Knicks center Marshall Plumlee (video)