Let me begin by saying that Renaldo Balkman and Stephon Marbury each had amazing halves in this game. Unfortunately for the Knicks, no one else on the team was even remotely productive even for a minute and the Sixers came away with a 92–90 win.
I was at the Garden, and I have to say I loved every minute of it, even when Marbury absolutely could not miss. To see just how hot he was in the third quarter I’ll let the scoreboard show you:
This game was exciting from beginning to end. For about a 25 minute stretch the Sixers lead was no more than 8, no less than 4. The teams traded buckets, the Knicks controlling the boards, the Sixers forcing turnover after turnover.
In the third, Andre Iguodala kept the Sixers in it, and had two monster dunks, one of which I’m pretty sure was physically impossible (Nothing on YouTube yet, I’ll keep my eyes open).
The Knicks turned at 10–point third quarter deficit into a 9–point lead in the fourth, then Marbury had to sit. As soon as his ass hit the bench, the Sixers came roaring back and took the lead. The Knicks made a final push down the stretch, but it was too little too late. After Korver missed two free throws, (let me repeat that, Kyle Korver, the best free throw shooter in the league, missed two free throws that could’ve iced the game with 2.3 seconds left on the clock.) the Knicks had one last shot at the win. Marbury forced an airball three. (The jokers over at Posting and Toasting seem to think he was fouled, but I didn’t see a foul). Game over, Sixers win, and they’re now 1 game behind the Knicks in the battle for bragging rights. Orlando, who currently holds the eighth seed lost tonight, but I vowed not to mention the “p-word” in association with the Sixers again this season.
Player of the game: Andre Miller. Miller hit a number of huge shots for the Sixers tonight, his stat line wasn’t that impressive, but every time Philly needed a hoop, he delivered.
Joe Smith did not play in this game, he’s dealing with personal matters. Smith was missed badly in the game, the Sixers had no third big man to rotate in, they wound up playing with a small lineup for long stretches. Luckily, the Knicks either couldn’t, or just didn’t feel like taking advantage. The Sixers re-signed Alan Henderson during the day today, I was shocked to see him in uniform tonight, but he didn’t see any action.