WASHINGTON (AP) Bradley Beal went shot for shot with Carmelo Anthony and then some as the Washington Wizards blew out the New York Knicks 117-101 Tuesday night to move into a tie for first place in the Southeast Division.
Beal scored 28 points, Markieff Morris had 24 and John Wall added 15 points and 10 assists as the Wizards rolled to their fifth victory in a row and won for the 11th time in 13 games. Beal was 12 of 18 from the floor, while Anthony was 10 of 17 for 26 points.
Washington improved to 28-20 and tied the Atlanta Hawks for first place. The Wizards are the second-hottest team in the NBA behind only the Golden State Warriors, who also won 12 games in January.
After a back-and-forth first half, the Wizards led by five at halftime but took control early in the third quarter with a 16-2 run. The Knicks missed six consecutive shots after Anthony opened the quarter with a jumper and committed two turnovers to fall behind by 19.
Porzingis’ absence wasn’t announced until about 20 minutes before tipoff. Coach Jeff Hornacek didn’t mention the possibility of the Latvian being out during his pregame meeting with reporters.
With the teams meeting for the first time since Sidney Lowe’s on-court distraction Jan. 19, coach Scott Brooks defended his assistant coach’s actions on the Knicks’ final possession. Lowe was fined $5,000 and the Wizards $15,000 for being on the court when New York’s Courtney Lee said he didn’t attempt a shot because he heard Lowe nearby yelling and believed it was a player who might block his shot.
Wall stole the ball, and the Wizards held on to win 113-110.
“He was on the court,” Brooks said. “I respect the NBA’s decision, but anybody who knows me and knows Sidney that he was not doing it to distract their player. He was instructing (Markieff Morris) to stay up on Carmelo and take him off the 3-point line because we were up 3. Once we did that, he backed off before the Knick player got the ball.”
Knicks: G Derrick Rose missed his second consecutive game with a sprained left ankle. … Lee has shot 6 of 25 in three games against the Wizards, all losses. … G Brandon Jennings scored 21 points but shot 5 of 16.
Wizards: Extended their home win streak to 15, tying the second-longest in franchise history. The Bullets won 22 consecutive games at home in 1974-75. … Wall’s double-double was his 28th of the season and Gortat’s his 27th. … After being held without a point in the first half, F Otto Porter scored 10 in the third quarter and spent the fourth riding a stationary bike to keep his sore hip loose.
Knicks: Visit the Brooklyn Nets in the second half of their back-to-back series Wednesday.
Wizards: Host the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday.