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Find out the scoop on the CAVS from award-winning sports writer Bob Finnan.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Game 17: Knicks at Cavs

at Quicken Loans Arena
RADIO/TV: WTAM/Fox Sports Ohio

WHAT HAPPENED: Whenever someone complains about the Cavs, it could be worse. They could be the Knicks.

That team is a dysfunctional mess. Their two star players - Amar'e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony - don't work well together. Getting back guard Baron Davis might help, but don't hold your breath. The Cavs could actually finish ahead of them in the standings.

And, while we're on the subject, don't expect Coach Mike D'Antoni to make it the entire year. He could be a coaching casualty this season.

The Cavs have now won nine in a row over the Knicks at The Q. They accomplished it with stellar defense and scrappy play.

The Cavs are now 1-4 on the tail end of a back-to-back set this season. They were in control of this game for almost the entire second half.

The Knicks were a half game ahead of the Cavs in the playoff race heading into last night's game. The difference is: if the Knicks don't make the playoffs, heads will roll. If the Cavs don't, fans will rejoice that they're getting a better draft pick.

The Knicks have lost seven of their last eight games. Their only win in that stretch was a victory over hapless Charlotte on Tuesday. Anthony had a season-low one point on 0 of 7 from the field against the Bobcats. How can that even happen?

They are banking on Baron Davis returning and leading them into the playoffs. Good luck with that. The 32-year-old guard just can't stay healthy in this stage of his career. If he's in shape and his back is feeling well, he could make a big impact on the team.

Davis will be able to get the ball where it's supposed to go. It would help their offense be more efficient, and that is needed in the worst way. They function now almost without a point guard. They need an infusion of talent in their backcourt. Rookie guard Iman Shumpert is functioning as their "point guard" right now, but he's more of a combo guy.

Enough about the Knicks. The Cavs' guard play is just fine. Cavs guard Kyrie Irving tied his career high with seven assists. He was just 1 of 7 from the field for seven points.

UP NEXT: The Cavs host New Jersey at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Quicken Loans Arena.

SF Omri Casspi (6-9, 225) vs. Carmelo Anthony (6-8, 230)
PF Antawn Jamison (6-9, 235) vs. Amar'e Stoudemire (6-11, 260)
C Anderson Varejao (6-11, 260) vs. Tyson Chandler (7-1, 240)
SG Anthony Parker (6-6, 210) vs. Landry Fields (6-7, 215)
PG Kyrie Irving (6-3, 191) vs. Iman Shumpert (6-5, 220)
Cavs – F/C Tristan Thompson, G Mychel Thompson
Knicks - G Baron Davis, C Josh Harrellson
Bill Kennedy,  Kane Fitzgerald,  Scott Twardoski


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