Preview: New York At Brooklyn
When: 7:30 PM ET, Friday, February 19, 2016
Where: Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
The New York Knicks have been disappointing enough that even star forward Carmelo Anthony had his name floated around in trade discussions in advance of Thursday’s deadline. Anthony remained in a Knicks uniform and will try to give the Knicks a kick start toward the stretch run when they return from the All-Star break to visit the crosstown rival Brooklyn Nets on Friday.
Anthony has a full no-trade clause in his contract but wild rumors had him going elsewhere in the off week surrounding the All-Star Game, in which he started for the Eastern Conference and contributed 13 points on 6-of-11 shooting to go along with six rebounds in 23 minutes. “One (championship) in New York is better than multiple somewhere else, so that was the reason I wanted to come to New York,” Anthony said Saturday in an interview on Sirius XM radio. “That’s the reason why I’m in New York, so it just bothers me when I started hearing all these trade rumors and trade talks.” The Nets would have liked to be more active at the deadline as well but lack the assets other teams covet. Brooklyn did manage to make one significant move on Thursday by hiring San Antonio Spurs front office executive Sean Marks as general manager.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, MSG (New York), YES (Brooklyn)
ABOUT THE KNICKS (23-32): New York stumbled into the break with losses in six straight and 10 of 11 to fall five games below the No. 8 spot in the East. The Knicks fired coach Derek Fisher before the break and promoted veteran assistant Kurt Rambis to the top spot, and he will get a 27-game audition to prove he deserves the job going forward. “We’ve got to start winning some ballgames,’’ Rambis told reporters before the team split up for the All-Star break. “Looking back on when I was a player and always as a coach, you’ve got a goal of making the playoffs. That’s not only for the benefit of the players and what they can learn and how they grow when they get to that level of competition, but also for the franchise.”
ABOUT THE NETS (14-40): Brooklyn let go of coach Lionel Hollins and reassigned general manager Billy King last month, and the upheaval in the front office continued into this week with owner Mikhail Prokhorov conducting interviews for the open GM slot. The Nets settled on Marks, a former player who spent the last five years in the San Antonio front office. “I am very excited to be named the general manager of the Brooklyn Nets, and to become a member of the vibrant and dynamic organization that represents Brooklyn,” Marks said in a statement. “I would like to thank Nets’ ownership for giving me this opportunity, and I look forward to the challenge of creating a unified culture and building a winning team.”
1. Nets G Markel Brown averaged 14.7 points and went 8-of-12 from 3-point range in the last three games.
2. Knicks rookie F Kristaps Porzingis scored 30 points on 12-of-16 shooting in the Rising Stars Challenge during All-Star weekend.
3. Brooklyn has taken five of the last six meetings, including a 110-104 home win on Jan. 13.
PREDICTION: Knicks 106, Nets 95