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5-10 FG | 2-4 FT | 14 REB | 4 AST | 12 PTS | +15
Give it up for O’Quinn. It was his best game so far in his rookie season, as he set career-highs in points, rebounds, and assists while notching his first career double-double. And better yet, the Queens native did it in his hometown at Madison Square Garden — the Mecca of basketball. You have to imagine he’ll remember this game when his career is over.
5-8 FG | 3-3 FT | 3 REB | 8 AST | 13 PTS | +12
With Jameer Nelson having an off night, the Magic were provided with steady point guard play from Udrih instead. Crafty as always, Udrih was excellent in the pick-and-roll, particularly in the second quarter when he and O’Quinn were two-man gaming the Knicks to death. He’s one of the main reasons that Orlando was able to erase a double-digit deficit before the game got away from them in the third.
5-8 FG | 4-6 FT | 1 STL | 3 REB | 14 PTS | +7
Watching Nicholson go to work in the post is a thing of beauty, especially when he cripples defenders with his sublime footwork. Just ask J.R. Smith, who’s still trying to come down from the rafters after Nicholson faked him out with an up-and-under move on the left block on a possession late in the fourth quarter. The up-fake allowed Nicholson to finish with an easy layup.
7-10 FG | 0-1 3P | 5 REB | 0 AST | 14 PTS | -26
What a weird night for Harris. Nikola Vucevic was a late scratch (flu) and missed his first game of the season. That forced Harris, who’s been starting at power forward for the Magic since March 8, to start at center. Probably not what he was expecting when he woke up this morning. The irony is that he probably lucked out by defending Kenyon Martin instead of Carmelo Anthony.
|New York Knicks
The Knicks have been decimated by knee injuries in recent weeks, with Tyson Chandler and Amar’e Stoudemire sitting out with varying ailments. The good news for New York was that they got Melo back after he missed six of the last eight games with a sore right knee, and he looked spry and healthy. And J.R. Swish showed up to play. And the 3-ball was falling for the Knicks.