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News » New York Knicks Getting Inside 2009-01-30

New York Knicks Getting Inside 2009-01-30

New York Knicks Getting Inside 2009-01-30
Mike D'Antoni has been talking about making the playoffs since the day he was introduced, but when the Knicks began to struggle in November, he sounded a little too optimistic.

Now it seems there is a real opportunity.

Methodical wins over the likes of Boston and Houston inspired a little more confidence, and the record is back to within five games of .500. Keeping that momentum going forward seems entirely possible now that they are no longer inept down the stretch of close games.

After winning seven of 10, the Knicks are one win away from climbing into the top eight teams in the Eastern Conference. D'Antoni even seemed to have greater belief on Wednesday after the Knicks beat Atlanta.

"I'm going to try not to think about it so I don't screw it up, if that's OK," he said when asked whether the playoffs seemed a greater possibility. "We've got a game Saturday, and we'll worry about that, but that's our goal and we can achieve that goal. Now, whether we will or not, we'll see.

"We need some luck because there's other teams in there. Getting breaks and hitting shots, that's all a big part of it, but we should be competitive like we have been the last five or six games."

KNICKS 112, HAWKS 104: Nate Robinson was a force in the fourth quarter, continually frustrating Atlanta whether he was finishing a highlight alley-oop, diving on the floor in pursuit of a loose ball or hitting from behind the arc.

The Knicks have won five in a row at MSG.

Robinson scored 20 points in the fourth quarter. He connected from deep in the corner with 6:21 left to play, making it a 96-85 lead for the home team. An extra pass from Chris Duhon resulted in the wide-open look.

"My teammates, they've got so much confidence in me, the coaches have more belief in me than I have in myself," Robinson said. "I just thank God for the opportunity."

The Hawks closed to within 109-102 in the final minutes when Marvin Williams converted a three-point play, but the Knicks (20-25) settled back down.

Robinson finished with 24 points. David Lee added 17 points and 16 rebounds.

"The fourth quarter was almost (all) him," Mike D'Antoni said of Robinson. "He has an energy that not many people have, and athleticism that's unbelievable. When it's channeled in the right direction, he's one of the better players in the league. Then he has these other moments when he lives on a different planet."

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: January 30, 2009


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