Cat Nap: Knicks sleep through loss to Bobcats, Chandler leaves injured

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Andrew Theodorakis/New York Daily News

Carmelo Anthony scores a game-high 32 points but the Knicks can’t close out the Bobcats in the end in an embarrassing loss at the Garden on Tuesday night.


Mike Woodson has been determined to make his “big lineup” work for the Knicks, sticking with that alignment for the third straight game — and loss — Tuesday night against Charlotte at the Garden.

But any big vs. small debate — or semblance of a defensive resurgence — quickly will be rendered moot if All-Star center Tyson Chandler is sidelined for any substantial time. The 2011-12 NBA Defensive Player of the Year hobbled off the court with 5:24 left in the first quarter with a right knee injury, and the Knicks fell to 1-3 with a boo-inducing and potentially costly 102-97 loss to the Bobcats.


“We don’t know the severity yet. We’ll know more (Wednesday) morning,” Woodson said of Chandler. “He’s a big piece of what we do. We just have to wait until tomorrow morning to see what the diagnosis is, I don’t know right now.”

Metta World Peace (18 points) is all over Bobcats forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.

Andrew Theodorakis/New York Daily News

Metta World Peace (18 points) is all over Bobcats forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.

The Knicks announced just before halftime that X-rays on Chandler’s right leg were inconclusive, and that he will undergo further tests.

Bronx product and former UConn star Kemba Walker (25 points) collided on a drive to the basket with Chandler — perhaps knee to knee — which sent the Knicks’ center to the locker room with the aid of inactive big man Cole Aldrich after his right knee and shin area were wrapped on the bench.


“I just pray and hope that Tyson’s fine, that he’s all right. I guess we’ll find out tomorrow. They’re not really telling us nothing,” Carmelo Anthony said. “He’s our anchor down there on the defensive end. So we miss him big-time.”

Kenyon Martin informed Woodson he was “good to go” and was pressed into 18 minutes of service after Chandler’s departure, even though Martin was not supposed to play as part of a platoon with Amar’e Stoudemire intended to keep both veteran forwards healthy for the long haul.

Mike Woodson is clearly unhappy with the loss.

Andrew Theodorakis/New York Daily News

Mike Woodson is clearly unhappy with the loss.

Stoudemire, who sat two of the first three games following summertime knee surgery, finished with two points on 1-for-3 shooting, five turnovers and a technical foul in 12 rusty minutes off the bench.


“I got a lot to think about right now,” Woodson said.

Anthony scored a season-high 32 in 45 minutes — but his erratic shooting continued with a 10-for-28 night from the field — and Metta World Peace added 18 for the Knicks, who will look to avoid a 1-4 start Friday in Charlotte. “There’s no need to try to pinpoint this or pinpoint that — we’re just not getting it done,” Anthony said. “The good thing is it’s early, our first four games, but we’ve got to figure it out, and the only people that’s going to figure it out is us as players, as a team, and we’ll get out of this.”

Woodson’s big lineup meant that 7-footer Andrea Bargnani (six points in 23 minutes) started at power forward for the third consecutive game, with the slumping Anthony at small forward.

Iman Shumpert (r.) drives past Bobcats guard Gerald Henderson.

Andrew Theodorakis/New York Daily News

Iman Shumpert (r.) drives past Bobcats guard Gerald Henderson.


Chandler’s absence dramatically altered Woodson’s rotation, however, as the Knicks briefly used Bargnani in the middle before Martin entered the game with the Knicks trailing, 64-54, to start the second half. The Knicks similarly fell into a 40-19 first-quarter hole their previous game against Minnesota, prompting a tirade from owner James Dolan, as the Daily News reported Tuesday.

“We wait until the third and fourth quarter to play and it’s too late. Our defense, it stinks, the last two outings in the first half,” Woodson said. “We got to get it fixed. In order for us to stay in the race you’re going to have to defend and rebound the ball. We’re not doing that right now.”

Walker buried a fall-away jumper with 48.3 seconds remaining, and the Knicks — who shot just 6-for-21 in the fourth, including 3-for-10 from Anthony and 0-for-5 from Raymond Felton — didn’t get closer than two the rest of the way.

Anthony hit a three-pointer with 16.2 seconds remaining, but Iman Shumpert made just one of two free throws following an inbounds steal, and Gerald Henderson (18 points) sank a pair with 13.5 ticks to go as the Bobcats held on to halt a 16-game road losing streak.

“We’ve got to remain positive,” Anthony said. “It’s easy to go into a dark place right now. It’s easy to listen to all that negativity that’s going to be coming our way, but we’ve got to stay together as a unit, as a team, remain positive and get through this.” 

Daily News – Sports

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