New York Knicks 70th Anniversary

5 Things To Know: Knicks Square Off Against Warriors in Oakland

by Jonah Ballow

10:30 PM EST | Oracle Arena
Radio: ESPN NY 98.7 FM

5 Things To Know:

1.  The Knicks fought back from double digits in the fourth quarter in Phoenix, forced overtime, and fell in the final seconds, 113-111.  Kristaps Porzingis was spectacular, finishing with 34 points, eight rebounds, three steals, and three blocks.  The big man also drilled all four of his attempts behind the arc in the defeat.  While New York was dropped on Tuesday, the team is still 2-1 on the west coast trip and 14-11 overall in the third spot in the latest Eastern Conference standings.

2.  Carmelo Anthony will sit out for the Knicks fourth road contest of the current five-game trip due to a sore right shoulder.  This is the first time this season Anthony has been unable to suit up for New York.

3.  Derrick Rose is out for tonight’s game against the Warriors.  The Knicks point guard is suffering from reoccurring back spasms that occurred in Miami a week ago and in Phoenix on Tuesday night.  Head coach Jeff Hornacek is hopeful Rose can return to the lineup in Denver on Saturday but would like to remain cautious and not force him back into action.

4.  How do you improve a team that won the championship two seasons ago and set an NBA record with 73 wins last year?  Well, the Warriors found a way.  Golden State signed former MVP Kevin Durant, acquiring one of the best players in the league in one of the most significant deals in league history.  Durant joins former MVP Stephen Curry, sharpshooter Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green to form an ultra-talented group that is on a mission to snatch the title back from the Cavaliers after last year’s Game 7 defeat in the Finals.  Durant’s deal did come at a cost for the defending Western Conference champs.  Golden State lost Harrison Barnes, Andrew Bogut, Marreese Speights, Festus Ezeli, Leandro Barbosa, and Brandon Rush.  So far, so good for the Warriors as they sit atop the league standings at 22-4 and 8-2 in their last 10 games.  Golden State owns offensive firepower, ranking second in offensive rating and third in 3-pointers made in the NBA.  This team will force a breakneck pace and launch long bombs from all over the court but its defensive capabilities are underrated.    Through 26 games, the Warriors are the ninth-best team in defensive rating while limiting opponents to just 43.3 percent from the field and 32.6 percent behind the arc.

5.  Behind a combined 57 points from Curry and Durant, Golden State edged the Pelicans 113-109 on Tuesday evening.  Both teams hit over 40 percent from downtown but the Warriors managed to steal the road victory.  JaVale McGee started at center for the first time this season as Zaza Pachulia is dealing with a right wrist injury that has sidelined him for three straight games.  Pachulia is listed as doubtful for tonight’s contest in Oakland.