New York Knicks

The New York Knicks played the Washington Wizards in their second preseason game tonight – Carmelo Anthony was excellent.

By Chip Murphy

The New York Knicks played their second preseason game Friday night against the Washington Wizards. Carmelo Anthony’s 21 points led his team’s impressive offensive effort in a 115-104 victory.

Anthony exploded in the second quarter with a flurry of shots that propelled them to a halftime lead and momentum for the second half. He looked like the Carmelo of old. The one the league continues to doubt can return.

Every Knicks fan watching should have been excited by what they saw tonight. Derek Fisher spoke during the Summer League about how he wanted his team to get out and run, via NY Post. It’s one thing to say it, but tonight they actually did it. New York started out slow. They looked lethargic, which is understandable in the preseason. They got over that feeling quickly. The Knicks scored 38 points in the second quarter after Anthony heated up. The rest of the team fed off his energy. Sasha Vujacic and Jose Calderon became more confident in pulling up and taking threes. Both men made multiple shots from downtown. Kristaps Porzingis made some impressive post moves. Where Porzingis was truly impressive tonight though was on the boards. In the first preseason game he only had two rebounds in 21 minutes. Tonight? 10 bounds in 21 minutes. He was mostly matched up tonight against Kris Humphries and Marcin Gortat tonight, two players known for their bruising style, and the rookie came to play.  

Kyle O’Quinn looked right at home for the second straight game. During his in-game interview he stressed how he was ready to, “help this team win,” and that he “knew his role.” The big man was widely regarded as a great addition for the triangle and has said and done all the right things in his short time as a Knick. He has fan favorite written all over him.

As good as everyone was tonight, and as great as Anthony was, the game ball goes to Derrick Williams. The former second overall pick out of the University of Arizona and borderline bust is looking to rejuvenate his career in New York. He dropped 23 points in just 21 minutes off the bench in tonight’s effort. No one on the team will benefit more from a high paced transition offense than Williams. As flawed as he has shown to be in his career, one thing he can do as well as anybody is run and finish, via DailyKnicks. If Derek Fisher is serious about playing at tonight’s type of pace then Williams could see more playing time than we expected off the bench.

With a little less than three weeks left than three weeks left to go before the regular season, New York still has plenty of time to work the kinks out. Tonight they didn’t look like they needed very much.

I'm ESNY's Executive Editor for I cover the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets. Email: Chip Murphy covers the NBA for Elite Sports NY. You can find him on Twitter @ChipperMurphy.