The Knicks cruised past the Pacers at home today. After a close first quarter, the Knicks took control in the second. Neither team could put the ball in the basket during the early Sunday afternoon contest. Both shot under 40%. The Knicks took a 41-30 halftime lead.
Carmelo Anthony scored 26 on 9-22 shooting. J.R. Smith made half his shots and added 13 points. Ronnie Brewer had a strong third quarter scoring. Indiana' Paul George had 20 points, but shot poorly.
The Knicks defense has been much improve since Mike D'Antoni stepped down last season. That improvement has carried over into this year. Indiana just had an off game (perhaps after a night on the town) offensively, but it shows the Knicks can win an up-and-down scoring bonanza or a halfcourt slugfest.
The Knicks won 88-76, but the game was never really in doubt from the second quarter on. The Knicks are now 7-1 and in the midst of a grueling part of the schedule. Last week, the Knicks faced two top teams on the road in consecutive days when they faced the Spurs and Grizzlies. This game against a team that made the playoffs last year came 36 hours after the loss to the Grizzlies. Next, the Knicks have three road games this week. It's a good thing the Knicks have sufficient depth.