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Stoudemire shines in return as Knicks take Game Four

Posted By Michael Burke On May 6 2012 @ 11:45 pm In New York Knicks | No Comments

2012 is probably not the year for the New York Knicks to win another title. This first round series against the Miami Heat is probably not one that the Knicks will win. However, May 6th, 2012 was the New York Knicks’ day.

After a 13 game playoff winless streak that stretched all the way back to 2001, the Knicks were finally able to get a victory in the postseason by edging out the Heat, 89-87.

This did not come as too much of a surprise to me; having encountered records of 8-15 and 18-24 this year, the Knicks have had to overcome plenty. They have showed heart and pride all season, something that past Knick teams have lacked. Today was no different. Being down 0-3 in the series and losing in the game, it would have been very easy for the Knicks to fold, but they didn’t. Instead, they gutted out a victory, shifting the series back to Miami for a crucial Game 5.

Carmelo Anthony led the way for the Knicks, scoring a game-high 41 points on 15 of 29 shooting, while turning the ball over just one time.

In his return from his infamous hand injury, Amar’e Stoudemire was equally as huge for the Knicks, scoring 20 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

As far as this series goes, yes, it’s likely still over. However, if Jeremy Lin is to make his return in Game 5, then things would be getting very interesting. Who’s to say the Knicks can’t steal one in Miami? Likely? No. Possible? Yes.

I will say this: if the Knicks take Game 5 in Miami, they will win the series. They will have the momentum, take Game 6 at home, and Miami will end up choking it away in Game 7. This is only if the Knicks take Game 5 though, a game in which I give the Heat the edge.

As far as the future goes, there is plenty to take from this game. Yes, it’s only one game, but the Knicks still showed a lot.

Carmelo Anthony proved he can carry this team in postseason games, and he proved that he does have the capability to carry this team to a championship. It might not be this season, but Carmelo is a superstar and will lead this team to a title in the near future.

Amar’e and Carmelo showed the world that they can play well together, but they really did not have anything to prove. The Knicks were 6-1 under Woodson with the two in the lineup, so they will be fine next year. There is absolutely no reason to try and move either one of them this offseason.

Some people want to say that Stoudemire has lost a step, but I disagree. In this shortened, 66-games-in-four-months season, Stoudemire has seldom been fully healthy. When he has been healthy this year, he has been the Stoudemire that we’ve all come to know and love. In an 82-game season, he will be playing at his best.

And Stoudemire isn’t the only one that could have used a full 82-game season. The Knicks have been banged up all season long, especially now, as guys like Jeremy Lin, Baron Davis, and Iman Shumpert are all injured. When healthy, this team has no limits, and is undoubtedly the second best in the East.

When next season rolls around, this team ought to be one of the favorites. With a starting lineup of likely either Jeremy Lin or Steve Nash, Iman Shumpert, Carmelo, Stoudemire, and Tyson Chandler, along with a bench that could still include Landry Fields, Steve Novak, J.R. Smith, Baron Davis, and Jared Jeffries, this team can play with and beat anyone.

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