Notebook: Knicks 113, Jazz 84



Posted Mar 9, 2013 11:03 PM

Adam Zagoria, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: No Carmelo and Amar'e. No problem.

With their two superstars sidelined with knee ailments, the Knicks shared the ball well and used a group effort to rout the Utah Jazz 113-84 on the last game of their homestand.

J.R. Smith went for 24 points, Steve Novak scored a season-high 20 and Raymond Felton added 15 points and four assists as the Knicks won for the third time in four games before they head out on a five-game West Coast road swing.

Chris Copeland also added 12 points and Kenyon Martin scored a season-best 10.

Playing the second night of a back-to-back, the Jazz lost their fourth straight and seventh in eight games.

Alec Burks had 14 and Gordon Hayward 13 for Utah.

QUOTABLE: "Coach [Mike Woodson] came in before the game and said we can't lose any more games at home. No matter who's in uniform and who's not, we gotta come in here with a sense of pride."

-- Smith in his postgame on-court interview

THE STAT: Smith and Novak went a combined 9-for-18 from deep and the Knicks converted 13-of-32 from the arc.

TURNING POINT: Trailing 11-4 in the first period, the Knicks rattled off a 19-2 run to go ahead 23-13 and never looked back. They then outscored the Jazz 30-17 in the second quarter -- getting nine points from Novak and seven from Felton -- to seize a 55-38 halftime edge.

QUOTABLE II: "He's just getting back into his groove. Once he makes one or two [3-pointers] we all know it's gonna start hailing form there."

-- Smith on Novak

WHO'S HOT: Without Amar'e Stoudemire dominating the paint and Carmelo Anthony dominating the ball, Novak and Smith were freed up to score from the perimeter. Novak went 7-for-12 overall and 5-for-10 from deep and appeared more comfortable than he has in a while. Smith has now scored 60 points in back-to-back games without Anthony on the floor. Smith went for a season-best 36 in Thursday's 95-94 loss to Oklahoma City.

WHO'S NOT: The Utah backcourt of Randy Foye and Mo Williams combined for 14 points on 5-for-18 shooting.

QUOTABLE III: "We gotta find ways for Novak to score the ball because that opens it up a little bit. ... But it's gotta be a total team effort offensively."

-- Woodson

NOTABLE: Stoudemire is scheduled to have a right knee debridement this coming week and is expected to miss approximately six weeks. Stoudemire, averaging 14.2 points and 5.0 rebounds, already had offseason knee surgery on his left knee and returned to the court Jan. 1. Stoudemire recently played four games in five nights and had taken on an increased workload, although his minutes limit was set at 30 per game. "I feel for Amar'e because he's put a lot of work in this summer to get back out on the court and what he went through at the beginning of camp and now he's gotta go back in again," Woodson said. "I feel for the young man because he's put so much time and hard work in. But we gotta go on." Added Woodson: "It's a major loss to what we're trying to do, but we're going to have to wait on him and continue our climb. We can't sit and sulk and feel upset about it. Guys have gotta step up play." Woodson said the Knicks will have to rely more on 40-year-old Kurt Thomas, 38-year-old Marcus Camby and the 35-year-old Martin to play more frontcourt minutes. "We gotta mix and match from a lineup standpoint and see what happens," he said. The NBA playoffs begin April 20, exactly six weeks from Saturday.

NOTABLE II: Thomas started his TCU career in 1990, the same year Iman Shumpert was born. They both started for the Knicks on Saturday.

QUOTABLE IV: "If we come back [from the road trip] over .500 I'm happy. A successful road trip. We win them all, then I'm really happy so we'll see what happens."

-- Woodson

INSIDE THE ARENA: Philip Seymour Hoffman, John Leguizamo and John McEnroe sat courtside.

UP NEXT: For the Knicks, Monday @ Golden State, Wednesday @ Denver, Thursday @ Portland. For the Jazz, Monday vs. Detroit, Wednesday @ Oklahoma City, Saturday vs. Memphis.