NEW YORK, Feb. 8 (Ticker) -- Brooklyn native Stephon Marbury has brought some excitement back to Madison Square Garden.

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Marbury put on a dazzling show, scoring 17 of his season-high 42 points in the first five-plus minutes of the fourth quarter as the New York Knicks continued their resurgence under Lenny Wilkens with a 110-104 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers.

"I just got into a nice groove," Marbury said. "I was shooting the ball well. My teammates were setting very good picks for me, they were getting me open."

The Knicks extended their winning streak to a season-high five games and moved within two games of .500 (25-27). They are 9-3 under Wilkens to climb to sixth in the Eastern Conference.

"Reality's definitely starting to set in," Marbury said. "I think guys' mind-sets are to get to .500 and try to go above .500."

After scoring 20 points in the first half, Marbury was held to just two in the third quarter, allowing the Clippers to rally from a 12-point deficit and briefly take the lead.

But with New York holding an 80-79 edge after the third quarter, Marbury took over the game, scoring 13 straight points for the Knicks during one stretch. His jumper gave New York a 99-85 cushion with 6:54 to play.

"We tried to trap him, we tried to double-team him, we even tried to triple-team him," said Elton Brand, who scored 28 points for the Clippers. "Still didn't work. You stop Marbury and then you got Kurt Thomas."

Since being acquired from the Phoenix Suns, Marbury is averaging 19.7 points in 17 games. He made 15-of-20 shots to surpass his previous season high of 40 points, also against the Clippers on December 29.

"He is playing tremendous basketball for us," Wilkens said. "He took over that one stretch tonight and made it look easy. Stephon is running the show for us out there and he's been doing a tremendous job."

"He was really unbelievable in that stretch," added Knicks forward Keith Van Horn, who had six points in 12 minutes. "Everything he threw up went in and we really needed it."

Marbury's performance overshadowed a strong game by Thomas, who contributed 28 points on 12-of-19 shooting. After making his last seven shots in Saturday's 76-64 win at Miami, Thomas hit his first seven against the Clippers. He also made all four of his foul shots, extending his streak 22.

"Stephon was the difference," Thomas said. "He took over the game and knocked shots down inside and outside. He did everything for us."

Los Angeles stayed in the game with an impressive display at the foul line, making an NBA season-high 42-of-46 free throws. But the Clippers could not stop Marbury and Thomas.

"They have as good a two-man game going in the league as anybody you can name," Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy said.

Corey Maggette also had 28 points for Los Angeles, which twice closed within four in the final two minutes, the second time at 106-102 on Marko Jaric's jumper with 28 seconds remaining.