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Knicks Take Game 5 to Stay Alive

by Photo of Ross Bernhardt

New York beat Indiana 85-75 at home to extend the series to a Game 6.

Knicks Take Game 5 to Stay Alive

The word "pretty" or the phrase "aesthetically pleasing" haven't been used much to describe the Knicks' play during their series with the Indiana Pacers. It certainly couldn't be used last night either in their 85-75 victory to extend the series and send it back to Indiana. Only three Knicks players shot better than 50% from the field (and two were Pablo Prigioni at 1-2 and Kenyon Martin at 2-2). The play was frantic at times and slow and muddled at others. Play was constantly stopped by the whistles of the referees. The Pacers, playing without point guard George Hill, lacked any real continuity on offense as they struggled to get things going. 

But in the end, the Knicks made more big plays to hold off all of Indiana's runs to come away with a season-saving win. At this point, it doesn't matter what it looks like. The Knicks need to find any and every way to win ballgames. Carmelo Anthony didn't put up the prettiest stat line (28 points on 12-28 shooting), but he hit big shots down the stretch and banged with David West and Roy Hibbert down low all game long. J.R. Smith still hasn't gotten out of his shooting funk (4-11) but had a much more complete game, filling things out with six rebounds, two assists, three steals and a block.

Perhaps the biggest spark for a Knicks team that has struggled to find Carmelo Anthony some help on offense was Chris Copeland. In his first string of extended minutes off the bench, Copeland scored 13 points on 4-6 shooting (including 3-4 from three) and really helped energize a couple different units. Like everyone else, Copeland's night wasn't the prettiest. He had some mishaps on the defensive end, but he got the job done. 

Paul George (24 points) and David West (17 points, 10 rebounds) led the way for the Pacers, who trailed the entire game. Their offense sputtered, while turnovers and poor free throw shooting again continued to plague the team. Indiana shot 19-33 from the free throw line and committed 19 turnovers. If they had been more efficient in just one of those areas, the game could have been completely different.

The Knicks still have a long way to go. Their backs are still against the wall as they go back to the Indiana. But even if they are playing some of their ugliest basketball of the year, they made this series more interesting last night.   

Let CHARGED.fm get you tickets to see Game 6 between the Indiana Pacers and the New York Knicks!

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