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Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Knicks 106, Magic 94

By Ian Begley



WHAT IT MEANS: If what happened Wednesday night was any indication, Carmelo Anthony's right knee seems to be just fine.

Anthony scored 21 points in 33 minutes, hitting seven of 14 shots in the Knicks' 106-94 win over the Orlando Magic.

Anthony had missed six of the Knicks' past eight games -- and sat out large portions of two of the past three he'd played in -- due to a right knee injury.

But he looked fine on Wednesday, getting plenty of lift on his jump shot and displaying a quick first step against the struggling Magic.

The Knicks were coming off a 1-4 West Coast trip but Wednesday's win at MSG helped them stay in first place in the Atlantic Division.

SHUMP'S KNEE: Iman Shumpert tweaked his left knee late in the first half -- the same knee he had ACL surgery on last May.

Knicks trainers monitored Shumpert's knee in the second half and decided he should not return to the game. But the Knicks said his absence was precautionary. We will have more details after the game.

The Knicks can ill afford to lose Shumpert with so many players banged up. Shumpert started for the Knicks at small forward on Wednesday.

BIG NIGHT FOR BENCH: The Knicks' reserves had a huge night at just the right time.

With the Knicks starting Kenyon Martin and Pablo Prigioni due to injuries, they needed offense from the bench -- and they got it.

New York's reserves scored a combined 51 points.

J.R. Smith had 22 points on 8-for-16 shooting, Steve Novak had 11 and Chris Copeland added nine.

Martin did a more than serviceable job as the Knicks' starting center, finishing with 11 points and three rebounds.

D-FENSE! The Knicks' defense responded well for the fourth straight night without Tyson Chandler. It held the Magic to 29 percent shooting from beyond the arc. The Knicks also forced Orlando into 16 turnovers and scored 16 points off those turnovers.

EWING IN THE HOUSE: Ex-Knick Patrick Ewing was on hand and received a warm welcome from the MSG crowd when he was showed on the JumboTron. The Hall of Fame center will join the MSG postgame show as an analyst after Wednesday's game.

WHAT'S NEXT: The Knicks have two more winnable games -- a home-and-home series against the Raptors on Friday and Saturday -- before facing the Celtics next Tuesday in Boston.

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