NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – It was a memorable evening at Madison Square Garden on Tuesday night.
The Knicks won their 13th game in a row en route to clinching their first Atlantic Division title since 1994. New York dominated the Wizards, 120-99, behind a balanced offensive attack. Carmelo Anthony was brilliant yet again, scoring 36 points on 13-of-21 from the field.
Five other players scored in double figures: Iman Shumpert had 18 points, Raymond Felton had 10 points, Chris Copeland had 17 points, Steve Novak had 12 points and J.R. Smith added 17 points.
It was a party at “The World’s Most Famous Arena,” but that party could have ended much better.
Kenyon Martin started at power forward in place of center Tyson Chandler, who is dealing with a bulging disk. Martin, who came into the game nursing a sore left knee — it had cost him the previous two games — suffered an ankle injury after coming down with a rebound early in the fourth quarter.
After the game it was confirmed that the 35-year-old had a sprained left ankle. X-rays were negative.
Martin and Chandler have been ruled out for Thursday’s game in Chicago against the Bulls, the team announced on Wednesday. Marcus Camby is listed as doubtful.
Martin started the fourth quarter with New York leading by 24 points. Prior to leaving the game injured, he recorded two points, three rebounds, a steal and two blocks in 18 minutes.
Woodson acknowledged to reporters that keeping Martin in the game might not have been the smartest idea.
“In hindsight, maybe I should’ve pulled him out, but I can’t sit here and cry over it,” Woodson said. “It happened and I’ve just got to get him back. That’s the bottom line.”
Smith is confident that the big man will be back in action for the playoffs, regardless if he’s not 100 percent healthy.
“I’m sure he will (play),” Smith said. “If worst comes to worst, even if he’s not 100 percent, he’ll tough it out. He’s tremendously strong-minded.”
New York signed the 13-year veteran to a 10-day contract on February 21. After performing well in his brief audition, he signed a second 10-day contract on March 5. Martin signed with the Knicks for the remainder of the campaign 10 days later.
In 18 games played for New York this season, K-Mart is averaging 7.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in 23.9 minutes per game.
Did Mike Woodson make a mistake by leaving K-Mart in the game? Sound off with your thoughts and comments in the section below…