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NBA: Knicks Prove they are for Real

On Thursday night, New York Knicks were given the chance to show the NBA they are for real. They did not disappoint. 

The Knicks were without high scorer Carmelo Anthony, who had lacerated a finger on his left hand the previous night that needed five stitches to close. Many NBA writers, insiders and coaches have wondered if the Knicks are the real deal after their hot start to the season. Last night New York quieted critics and proved, even without their high scorer, they are one of the league’s top teams.

The Knicks cruised to a 112-92 victory on the night. The win was the worst loss at home versus the big three of Miami since they started playing together in 2010. It was not just a win on the road for the Knicks, but it was their second win this season against the Heat and the second time they defeated the Heat by 20 points.

The Knicks won despite the absence of Anthony, of Amar’e Stoudemire and of Iman Shumpert their best defender on the perimeter. The Knicks are now 14-4 on the season, have the best record in the Eastern Conference and the second best record in the league. This season they will cause fits for many teams.

New York, even though the win counts for just one victory, learned how they could beat the Heat. Last season the Heat beat up the Knicks, says Knicks center Tyson Chandler, but this season the team has learned to win and not be beaten up by an opponent.

Last season the Knicks season ended in a five game series defeat in the playoffs, amidst the irrational behavior of Stoudemire smashing one of his hands into a glass enclosed fire extinguisher. Last season, the Knicks fired Coach Mike D’Antoni and replaced him with Mike Woodson. Since then, the Knicks are 32-10 under Woodson during the regular season.

The win not only helps the Knicks to build confidence but it shows them how they can win and win consistently. They are learning how to take care of teams that are one step above them and get beyond those teams.

In the game, the Knicks used the three point shot to make up for the absence of high scorer Anthony. New York hit 18 shots from beyond the three-point line in the game. The Knicks tough defense also forced the Heat to turn the ball over 14 times, while the Knicks made nine steals on the night.

Jason Kidd has helped to bring balance and poise to the team. He also knows how to win. He and teammate Chandler played on Dallas when they won the NBA championship in 2011. He said the locker room and play on the court is similar now on his new team to when he won the title with Dallas.

However, Kidd said the season is 82 games long and what they are doing now is just rehearsing for the big dance that is called the playoffs. He said you could not feel too good about anything since you have not accomplished anything.

Kidd’s comments put a damper on the victory, but no one in the locker room will argue with his instincts or experience. However, with what the Knicks showed on the court Thursday most people are confident they will be in the big dance come June and will be giving the Heat and other top teams a run for their money.

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