Thursday, October 30, 2008
Sports NewsMayfield's Mutterings: A 'Wicked' weekend

Knicks beat Heat 120-115 to win D'Antoni's opener

Send a link to a friend

[October 30, 2008]  NEW YORK (AP) -- Mike D'Antoni's New York Knicks are off and running -- and a couple of former core players can only sit and watch. Jamal Crawford scored 29 points, Zach Randolph added 20, and the Knicks beat the Miami Heat 120-115 on Wednesday night in their first game under D'Antoni.

DonutsWilson Chandler had 17 points and nine rebounds, and David Lee and Quentin Richardson each scored 16 points for New York. Relying just as much on solid defense as D'Antoni's up-tempo offense, the Knicks seized control late in the second quarter, opened a 23-point lead in the third, then held on after the Heat got within three points in the final minute.

And they did it without former coach Isiah Thomas' two prized acquisitions, Stephon Marbury and Eddy Curry. D'Antoni kept both former starters on the bench, ignoring rather loud chants of "We want Steph! We want Steph!" late in the third quarter. Curry spent the final period in the training room icing a sore right knee.

Dwyane Wade had 26 points, nine assists and seven rebounds in his return to regular-season action for the Heat, but fouled out on what appeared to be a good block of Crawford's 3-pointer with 1:25 left after Miami closed within six.

Udonis Haslem added 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Heat, who looked lost offensively for three quarters before a fierce rally in rookie coach Erik Spoelstra's debut. Spoelstra, 37, became the youngest head coach in the NBA when he replaced Pat Riley.


Rookie Michael Beasley, the No. 2 pick in the draft, had only nine points on 4-of-14 shooting for the Heat. Mario Chalmers also started for the Heat, giving them two rookies in the opening night lineup for the first time since Wade and Haslem started on Oct. 28, 2003, against Philadelphia.

D'Antoni replaced Thomas, bringing his entertaining offensive style that led the Phoenix Suns to an average of 58 wins the last four seasons. The Knicks quickly picked up the system, scoring 106.9 points per game in the preseason, and were even better in the opener.

New York is coming off a miserable 23-59 last season, its seventh straight sub-.500 finish. D'Antoni won't promise a winning team yet, but he did vow the Knicks would play hard and be entertaining, and that was certainly true on opening night.

The Heat were an NBA-worst 15-67 last season, and they'll be in for another long year if they can't find more help from Wade, who was visibly frustrated in the third quarter after firing a pass out of bounds.

Wade hadn't played a regular-season game since March, before the Heat decided to shut him down for the season so he could rest his surgically repaired knee before playing in the Olympics. He was only 9-of-24, perhaps trying to do too much while his teammates struggled for so long.

Also returning to action was Shaun Livingston, who appeared in his first game since suffering a massive left knee injury while playing for the Los Angeles Clippers on Feb. 26, 2007. He had two points in 4 minutes.

[to top of second column]

Crawford scored 13 points in the first quarter, helping the Knicks take a 28-27 lead. New York trailed by three midway through the second, then used a 19-3 run over the 5 minutes to build a 56-42 cushion.

Beasley's 3-point cut the Knicks' 60-45 halftime lead to 10 with 8:21 left in the third, but New York scored 13 straight over the next 4:20 for an 84-61 bulge.

Daequan Cook helped make it a close finish, making three 3-pointers and finishing with 13 points for the Heat.

Notes: The Heat also had two rookies in their opening night lineup in 1988: Rony Seikaly and Kevin Edwards. ... The Knicks opened a season at home for first time since Oct. 29, 2003. ... Knicks rookie Danilo Gallinari, the No. 6 pick, made his debut late in the first quarter after missing the entire preseason schedule while recovering from a back injury.

[Associated Press; By BRIAN MAHONEY]

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




Auto Sales

< Sports index

Back to top


News | Sports | Business | Rural Review | Teaching & Learning | Home and Family | Tourism | Obituaries

Community | Perspectives | Law & Courts | Leisure Time | Spiritual Life | Health & Fitness | Teen Scene
Calendar | Letters to the Editor