All I can say is oof. That was bad. Really bad. The Knicks walked into Time Warner Cable arena Tuesday night carrying a six-game losing streak and feeling the heat by the media, yet they were able to trounce the Bobcats in a game where effort was apparently optional for Charlotte. It's expected that this team is going to lose a ton of games this year, but what isn't expected is for a lack of effort from a relatively young team.
Byron Mullens went from being a fan favorite to quickly drawing ire from many over his lack of hustle and willingness to play tough on the defensive end. Remember when Mullens Mafia was a thing? Well, apparently someone in his crew offed him because he's been a no-show lately. Mullens is the type of player that needs to score to give full effort, or at least it seems that way. When he's missing his shots his body language goes sour and he looks like a kid who got his toys stolen from him on the playground.
Anyway let's get to the game.
The first half began with the Knicks jumping out to an 8-0 lead behind Landry Field's six points. It was about as bad as of a start you could have drawn up for the Bobcats. Kemba Walker was struggling handling the ball and made a couple of errant passes including one that sailed past an open Gerald Henderson streaking to the hoop. But the rookie proved tough as he battled back to catch fire and carry the offense through much of the first half finishing it with 15 points on 5-of-6 shooting.
Unfortunately, for Charlotte, the second half came.
Henderson got the Bobcats within eight after he hit a long jumper, but the Knicks would respond with a 7-0 run, which included two thunderous dunks from Amar'e Stoudemire. The run started after Tyrus Thomas got a technical foul after a charge call that sent Carmelo Anthony to the line where he would score his only point of the game. Henderson broke up the run with another jumper to bring Charlotte within 13--the closest the 'Cats would get the remainder of the game.
From there on New York ran away with the game causing fans to head for the exits early. Walker cooled off in the second half missing his first six shots, although he didn't turn the ball over. Many will complain that he only finished with two assists but to be fair his teammates weren't hitting shots, and you can't overlook the group he was playing with. Charlotte is by far the most offensively challenged team in the NBA and it isn't even close, so it's going to be hard for Kemba to pile up assists, especially with D.J. Augustin and D.J. White out of the lineup.
There really isn't anything else to say about this game. It was a pathetic effort from a team that should pride itself on playing hard, because that's the only way that they will compete.
Tyson Chandler--The former Bobcat abused Mullens throughout the game as he cruised to a 20-point night in which he compiled 17 rebounds, eight that were offensive in only 30 minutes of action.
Kemba Walker--Sure he shot 2-of-11 in the second half and only finished with two assists. But the lack of movement and stand around and watch Kemba dribble act didn't exactly help the kid out. Oh, and his 15 first half points were the only reason the game was remotely close at halftime.
Landry Fields--Fields did a little bit of everything in this one. He scored early, rebounded a little bit, got a couple steals and blocks and dished out five assists.
Paul Silas--I am now opening this section of my recaps to coaches after this loss. Silas inexplicably played Gana Diop and Eduardo Najera over Bismack Biyombo in a game where the Bobcats needed help on the boards. Biyombo clearly isn't ready on the offensive end, but his shot blocking presence would have helped deter Knicks from going into the paint at will.
I honestly don't know what Silas is trying to do. The season is a wash and the team is rebuilding. Why not throw out the kid and let him learn on the fly? Biyombo's shown flashes already this season in limited minutes and it's getting ridiculous that he can't get 20-to-25 minutes a night.
Tyrus Thomas aka "Amnestied"--Thomas has underachieved his entire career and it's apparent that he's never going to figure it out. Against the Knicks he shot 1-of-9, scored just four points and four rebounds in 31 minutes of action. If the Bobcats don't amnesty him after this season--if they aren't able to move him in a trade--it would be time to riot.
Carmelo Anthony--A horrible game for Anthony. He went 0-of-7 from the field and his only point came a free throw via a technical foul. Needless to say Melo didn't look interested in the game. Luckily, for him, the Knicks won by a bazillion points.