Notebook: Knicks 98, Hawks 92



Posted Apr 17, 2013 11:44 PM

Adam Zagoria, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: Despite suffering a dislocated shoulder late in the game, Chris Copeland became the first Knick rookie to have back-to-back 30-point games since Bill Cartwright in 1980 when he went for a career-high 33 points as the Knicks closed the regular season by beating the Atlanta Hawks 98-92 at Madison Square Garden.

New York won 16 of its final 18 games to close the season at 54-28, their best record in 16 years.

James White added 20 points for the Knicks and Iman Shumpert tallied 18, but left the game in the fourth quarter with cramps in his right thigh. In his season debut with the Knicks, Earl Barron put up 11 points and 18 rebounds in 37 minutes.

Carmelo Anthony, J.R. Smith, Jason Kidd, Raymond Felton and Tyson Chandler were among those who did not play for the Knicks.

Mike Scott had 23 points and John Jenkins 20 for the Hawks (44-38), who were without the services of Al Horford, Josh Smith, Kyle Korver and Devin Harris.

With the loss, the Hawks will be the No. 6 seed and will face the Indiana Pacers in the first round.

New York was already locked in to the No. 2 seed in the East and will face the Boston Celtics.

QUOTABLE: "It popped out for a second, we'll see when we go back in the training room."
-- Copeland on his shoulder during his on-court interview.

THE STAT: The Knicks shot 9-for-24 (38 percent) from the arc, while the Hawks were 2-for-21 (10 percent).

TURNING POINT: The Knicks raced out to a 25-16 first-quarter lead behind a combined 15 points from Pablo Prigioni (eight points) and Barron (seven). Prigioni then turned his right ankle on a drive and was forced to leave the game. Copeland had 18 points at the half, when the Knicks led, 45-39.

QUOTABLE II: "Iman was mainly cramps. Cope's fine. He had a helluva game, he'll sleep good on that. Pablo will be day-to-day."
-- Knicks coach Mike Woodson

WHO'S HOT: Copeland has gone for 33, 32 and 20 in his last three games, an average of 28.3 points per game.

WHO'S NOT: Steve Novak went 1-for-8 from beyond the arc. He is danger of losing his spot in the postseason rotation to Copeland.

QUOTABLE III: "We knew he could score but not like this, so he's been a nice surprise for our ballclub. We just gotta get him focused on the other end a little bit."

-- Woodson on Copeland

NOTABLE: One day after signing former Knick Quentin Richardson for the playoffs, New York on Wednesday announced the signing of Barron in the wake of Rasheed Wallace's retirement. Barron played seven games for the Knicks in 2009-2010, averaging 11.7 points and 11.0 rebounds over 33.1 minutes. "The way we play offensively he fits right in from a pick-and-pop guy who can help some," Woodson said of Barron. "Defensively, he knows the rotations. Hes another big; we're happy to have him."

NOTABLE II: Barron replaced Wallace, 38, whom the Knicks had hoped could play 10-15 minutes per game in the playoffs beginning Saturday against the Celtics after coming off left foot surgery in February. Wallace called it quits Wednesday after lasting just 3 minutes, 50 seconds in Tuesday's loss at Charlotte before leaving the game with a sore foot. "Rasheed has given this team everything he had," Woodson said. "He is a winner, true professional and leader on and off the court. Due to his injury, he will not be available to play for us during the playoffs." He added: "I think he's going to hang around and try to be around the team some. I like Rasheed, I like him around me."

QUOTABLE IV: "Playoffs is a whole 'nother scenario. I love our chances. We got a deep team. I'm excited to get this thing going."
-- Copeland

INSIDE THE ARENA: Ricky Gervais, Al Roker, Britney Griner and Skylar Diggins sat courtside.

UP NEXT: For the Knicks, Playoffs TBD. For the Hawks, Playoffs TBD.