Rapid Reaction: Knicks 90, Raptors 87
February, 14, 2012
By Ian Begley | ESPNNewYork.com
WHAT IT MEANS: Now that was Linsane.
With the Knicks trailing by three with 1:05 to go, Jeremy Lin continued his magical run by tying the game with a layup and a free throw and winning it, 90-87, with a 3-pointer with 0.5 seconds to play. The Knicks trailed by as many as 12 points in the fourth quarter.
Lin has led the Knicks (14-15) to six straight wins. He finished with 27 points and 11 assists, including 12 points in the fourth quarter.
THE GOOD: Toronto did everything it could to slow Lin down. The Raptors cut off driving lanes on Lin, double-teamed him at times and beat him up when he got into the paint. But they couldn't stop him when it counted most.
The Knicks trailed by five points with 1:31 to play. Iman Shumpert made a steal and converted a dunk to cut the lead to three. And then Lin went to work.
The undrafted guard from Harvard converted a layup while being fouled. He knocked down the free throw after struggling from the line for most of the fourth quarter. On the Knicks' next possession, he nailed a 3-pointer from the top of the key to win the game, the signature moment of what has been a truly remarkable run.
AMARE RETURNS: Amare Stoudemire was away from the team for seven days mourning the death of his brother. He struggled with his shot in his return to the floor on Tuesday. Many expected Stoudemire to thrive with Lin, who is adept at running the pick-and-roll. Stoudemire appeared to be out of sync both offensively early on (started 1-for-7) and defensively. But Stoudemire came off the bench in the fourth quarter to contribute to big baskets and finished with 21 points and nine rebounds. He missed 14 of his 22 shots.
TYSON DELIVERS: Tyson Chandler had another strong game on offense while playing with Lin, finishing with 13 points (5-for-5) and nine rebounds.
THE BAD: The Knicks were outscored 22-13 in bench points and turned the ball over 16 times (8 from Lin), leading to 21 Toronto points.
WHAT'S NEXT: The Knicks come home on Wednesday to face the Sacramento Kings, which will kick off a five-game homestand. They face New Orleans at home on Friday. New Orleans and Sacramento entered play Tuesday a combined 15-40, so New York should be able to take advantage of a soft spot in the schedule. The Knicks take on the defending champion Mavericks (18-11) on Sunday afternoon.
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