- Ian Begley, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Knicks have adjusted to life without Jason Kidd.
They've gone 2-1 with their 39-year-old point guard sidelined with lower back spams.
Can they keep it up against the Phoenix Suns on Sunday?
Here are a few things to watch during the game:
MOVING PARTS: The Knicks are at their best when they move the ball well and don't turn it over.
Naturally, that's been a bit of a concern with Kidd out.
The Knicks' ball movement suffered in their first game without Kidd (an overtime loss at Brooklyn), but it was a key factor in their last two wins (at Milwaukee and vs. Washington).
Pablo Prigioni has been the driving force behind New York's great ball movement in the past two games.
The 35-year-old rookie had career highs in points (11) and assists (7) against the Bucks and handed out five assists off the bench against Washington, helping the Knicks to a 24:7 assist-to-turnvoer ratio against the Wizards.
If they can continue to take care of the ball and distribute it well against the Suns, the Knicks should have an easy afternoon on Sunday.
SUN AND GUN: It'll be interesting to see who can control the pace of this game.
Phoenix plays at a pace the Knicks aren't accustomed to, averaging 96 possessions per game (6th in the league).
The Knicks, on the other hand, played at the third-slowest pace in the NBA (92.7 possessions per game).
If the teams get into an up-and-down shootout, New York may be in trouble.
But if the Knicks dictate the pace by keeping the turnovers to a minimum, they should be fine.
CHANDLER CAN'T MISS: After going 5-for-8 from the field against the Wizards, Tyson Chandler finished the month of November shooting 70.9 percent from the floor (66-for-93). According to Elias, Chandler is just the second NBA player to hit at least 70 percent of his shots in a month in which he attempted at least 75 field goals.
The only other player to accomplish the feat was the one and only Wilt Chamberlain, who reached those marks in seven separate months.
Can Chandler continue to operate with such efficiency in December? We'll begin to find out against Phoenix on Sunday.
17dKevin Pelton and Chad Ford