Kurt Helin

Knicks rally from 18 down, beat Bucks 116-111 to snap skid

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MILWAUKEE (AP) — Two nights after losing to the Bucks on a last-second shot at home, the New York Knicks rallied late in the rematch and stunned Milwaukee.

Carmelo Anthony had 26 points and 10 assists, including a clutch 3-pointer in the fourth quarter, and the Knicks stormed back from 18 down Friday to beat the Bucks 116-111 and stop their six-game losing streak.

With less than a minute remaining, Anthony drained a 3-pointer that put New York in front by one.

“It felt good. I’m glad it went in,” he said. “You don’t make it if you don’t take it.”

On the ensuing possession, Lance Thomas stripped Giannis Antetokounmpo, leading to a fast-break dunk by Courtney Lee that helped the Knicks hold on.

New York rebounded from a tough loss Wednesday, when Antetokounmpo hit a step-back jumper at the horn that gave Milwaukee a 105-104 victory at Madison Square Garden.

“It is a great win for us tonight because the other night (we) thought we should have won,” Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek said.

This time, they did. New York erased a 13-point deficit to begin the fourth quarter and ended its longest skid of the season.

Kristaps Porzingis returned from a three-game absence due to a sore left Achilles tendon and added 24 points for the Knicks.

“We needed it. We needed it more than anything,” he said.

Antetokounmpo and Jabari Parker had 25 points apiece for Milwaukee. Greg Monroe chipped in with 19.

“After halftime, we relaxed and didn’t move the ball real well,” Antetokounmpo said. “We were taking tough shots and we weren’t playing our game. We had a chance to put them away, but we didn’t.”

The Knicks used a 12-0 run to cut the Bucks’ lead to one early in the fourth. Milwaukee’s Jason Terry was called for a flagrant foul during the stretch after he struck Ron Baker in the neck with his forearm.

After New York pulled within a point again later in the quarter, Tony Snell connected on back-to-back 3s for Milwaukee. Porzingis answered with a pair of 3-pointers.

After trailing by 12 at halftime, the Knicks opened the third quarter on a 15-4 run to cut the deficit to a single point. The Bucks immediately followed with a 9-0 spurt and led 96-83 heading to the fourth.

The Bucks used torrid long-range shooting to lead 65-53 at halftime. Milwaukee made its first eight shots from 3-point range before Michael Beasley misfired with about seven minutes left in the second quarter.

The Knicks jumped out to a 9-0 lead but the Bucks quickly erased the deficit and held a 33-32 advantage after one quarter.

AFTER FURTHER REVIEW

Hornacek brushed off a report from the NBA that stated there was a missed five-second call on Antetokounmpo’s game-winning shot Wednesday. “You’re not going to see it called,” Hornacek said. “They aren’t going to change the game, so you just move on.”

ROUGH GAME

New York center Joakim Noah picked up three personal fouls and was charged with a technical in the first half after he vehemently argued a call. Noah picked up two fouls in the third quarter and argued with referees as he left the court after being called for an offensive foul. He fouled out late in the game and egged on fans as they mocked him while he made his way to the bench.

TIP-INS

Knicks: Hornacek thought he’d be forced to limit Porzingis’ playing time as he returned from injury, but the forward/center logged 30 minutes before fouling out with 2:44 remaining. Porzingis said after the game that he had no soreness in the Achilles. “Maybe I should have worked harder,” he said.

Bucks: Matthew Dellavedova missed his fifth consecutive game with a strained right hamstring. “He’s doing better,” coach Jason Kidd said. “We’ll see at practice (on Saturday) how he does and hopefully he’s back soon.” … Antetokounmpo has at least 20 points in 14 consecutive games, matching the longest streak by a Bucks player since Michael Redd in 2006.

 

Karl-Anthony Towns throws down the windmill dunk (VIDEO)

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Karl-Anthony Towns on the breakaway — you knew this was going to be good.

And he didn’t disappoint, he throws down the windmill.

Towns for the dunk contest?

Guys waived Friday: Ryan Kelly, Alonzo Gee, Pierre Jackson, John Jenkins; more to come

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Expect a rash of guys to be waived in the next 24 hours. The reason is simple: Players on non-guaranteed contracts still on the roster by Jan. 10 see their contracts guaranteed for the full season, and to get them off the roster by then they need to be waived on Saturday at the latest.

There was a rash of guys let go on Friday to get ahead of the curve, and Marc Stein of ESPN summed it up.

None of these guys will get snapped up off waivers. Most of these guys will get picked up in the D-League, others may get 10-days soon with other NBA squads. Ryan Kelly and Alonzo Gee are the kind of fringe NBA players who will get other chances in the Association, they have valuable NBA skills. Some team may take a chance on Pierre Jackson and John Jenkins.

There will be more waived guys on Saturday.

PBT Extra: Three big takeaways from Kyle Korver trade

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Kyle Korver is headed to Cleveland, as part of the arms race for the NBA Finals.

What are the big takeaways from this deal? It’s good news if you’re a Cavaliers’ fan, and if you’re a Hawks fan I hope you like rebuilding. Those are at the heart of the big takeaways from the trade covered in this latest PBT Extra video.

NBA official report: Jerami Grant did foul Nene on final shot

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Thunder fans were angry after their two-point loss to Houston — they thought the referees got it wrong. On the final play that mattered, James Harden got a screen from Nene, and both defenders Andre Roberson and Steven Adams stick with Harden, who then hits the rolling Nene with the pass. Jerami Grant comes in and blocks Nene’s shot but gets called for the foul.

Grant got ball, but the NBA’s Last Two-Minute official report says the call on Grant was the right one. From the report:

Grant (OKC) makes body contact with Nene (HOU) that affects his SQBR on the play at the basket.

SQBR stands for speed, quickness, balance, rhythm — knock a player off those, and it’s a foul.

The only call the report says the referees missed was Houston’s Montrezl Harrell grabbed the net while tipping a rebound with :44 seconds left.

Thunder fans don’t have to like the NBA’s interpretation. Wouldn’t have mattered anyway, even if they called it a foul nothing changes.