The short-handed New York Knicks lost to the Indiana Pacers in a game that was close throughout much of the game. In the end, the game showcased the Pacers tough defense and the offensive limitations of the Knicks, who were playing without a suspended Carmelo Anthony (see: Honey Nut Cheerios).
The contest was decided during a key 4th quarter run where the Pacers outscored the Knicks 18-2. A steal by Paul George and a block by Roy Hibbert are two examples of how the Pacers use their length to play good pick-and-roll defense. That said, during this stretch, the Knicks got plenty of good, open shots they simply couldn’t knock down, like a Steve Novak three-pointer and Pablo Prigioni jumper. On offense, the Pacers move rather freely around the court and make open shots like a George drive and Gerald Green three-pointer.
This game could be a good learning point for the Knicks who played without Carmelo Anthony, Raymond Felton and Iman Shumpert and are still figuring out how Amar’e Stoudemire will fit in. Since they got good looks on offense, the Knicks should be confident that some of those shots will go in more often. More importantly, the Knicks can make some simple adjustments (box out and more ball pressure) to limit teams from scoring.