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Sunday, January 5, 2014
Rapid Reaction: Knicks 92, Mavericks 80

By Ian Begley

Don't mess with Texas, the saying goes.

Well, don't tell that to the New York Knicks. They finished their three-game road trip through the Lone Star State with a convincing win over the Dallas Mavericks.

The Knicks got 19 points from Carmelo Anthony (15 in the first quarter), 47 bench points and five big fourth-quarter points from a red-hot Iman Shumpert to walk off the court with a victory.

The Knicks went 2-1 on their "Texas Triangle" road trip.

They beat the San Antonio Spurs in a surprising win on Thursday. They then lost a close game in Houston on Friday and finished the trip with Sunday's win.

The Knicks (11-22) had lost back-to-back games to the Toronto Raptors prior to the trip, falling six games behind in the Atlantic Division. So many observers predicted the Knicks would struggle on the road trip.

Instead, they won two of three and enter Tuesday's home game against the Detroit Pistons with the chance to win back-to-back games for just the second time this season.

Incredible Iman: His numbers were not as gaudy as they were the past two games, but Shumpert stole the show late in Dallas.

With the Knicks up by just six points late in the fourth quarter, Shumpert went to work.

He converted an enormous reverse layup with 1:37 to go to give the Knicks an eight-point lead. The Mavs cut the lead to six again, but Shumpert then hit a 3-pointer with 1:13 to go to essentially seal the game.

The third-year guard finished with nine points, six rebounds and three steals.

Shumpert had scored a combined 53 points in the previous two games on the Texas trip. In the 12 games prior to that, he'd totaled just 42 points.

K-Mart fills in: Tyson Chandler left Sunday's game with an illness. So Kenyon Martin was called into duty and filled in admirably. Martin finished with 14 points and six rebounds in 29 minutes. He put up six quick points early in the third quarter to give the Knicks a 19-point lead.

Tim Hardaway Jr. (10 points) contributed significantly in the fourth quarter. Amar'e Stoudemire finished with 11 points.

Moving it well: Ball movement has been an issue at times for this team, but coach Mike Woodson's club executed well on Sunday.

The Knicks had 20 assists on 36 makes, and shot 48 percent from the floor. New York also played solid defense, holding Dallas to 41 percent shooting. The Mavericks had won 12 of their past 13 home games against the Knicks.

What's next: The Knicks will return home and prepare to face the Pistons at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday.

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