SALT LAKE CITY (CBSNewYork/AP) — New York Knicks center Tyson Chandler likes his team’s chances in the playoffs.
That is, if they get in.
The Knicks continued to make things interesting with a win over the Utah Jazz on Monday night that kept them one game back of the final Eastern Conference playoff berth.
“I always thought that we’d have a chance to really make it to the playoffs,” Chandler said after the 92-83 victory. “And I still believe that if we get in there somebody is going to be in trouble.”
Carmelo Anthony scored 34 points on 11-of-19 shooting. Chandler added 15 points and nine rebounds, while J.R. Smith scored 13 points and Raymond Felton chipped in 12 points and six assists to help New York (32-43) finish 3-2 on its western trip.
“We got to go out there and accept that challenge,” Anthony said. “This schedule is not in our favor, so we have to go take games.”
It wasn’t just Anthony willing his team to victory. The Knicks made a collective effort to clamp down on the perimeter in the second half and keep Utah from shooting its way back into the game.
New York shot 47 percent (33 of 70) from the field while holding Utah to just 39 percent (33 of 85).
“The guys did an excellent job tonight of closing off the dribble,” Chandler said. “Even when we did get beat, we would kind of stand on their hip and funnel them into a tough situation, which allowed myself, Cole (Aldrich) and some other bigs to come over and help.”
Knicks coach Mike Woodson said Anthony has been “doing a lot of the little things,” and it’s starting to rub off on everyone else.
He’s done that all season,” Woodson said. “He’s been there when we needed him and now everybody is starting to chip in. It doesn’t matter who plays. They’re really taking advantage of the minutes they’re getting.”
The Atlanta Hawks (32-41) eked out a win over the lowly Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night to maintain their one-game lead over the Knicks.
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