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Struggling Knicks face Bucks Friday night
By: Zach Cohen - StatFox
Published: 1/5/2017  at  10:20:00 PM
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Tip-off: Friday, 8:00 p.m. ET
Line: N/A, Total: N/A

The Knicks will be looking to stop a six-game losing skid when they face the Bucks in Milwaukee on Friday.

The Knicks and Bucks met in New York on Wednesday night, and the teams played a very exciting game. Milwaukee trailed by double digits in that one, but the team ultimately pulled out a 105-104 victory as a three-point road favorite. SF Giannis Antetokounmpo (23.9 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 5.9 APG, 2.0 BPG, 1.9 SPG) was the hero for the Bucks, hitting a game-winning fadeaway jumper from the top of the key as time expired. These teams are now trending in opposite directions, as the Knicks have lost five straight and the Bucks have won three in a row. The Bucks have also dominated this head-to-head series in recent years, as they are now 7-2 SU and 5-4 ATS versus the Knicks over the past three seasons. That includes 2-1 records both SU and ATS when hosting New York. One trend that works in the Knicksí favor coming into this game is the fact that they are 6-0 ATS off a home loss this season and 8-2 ATS after a home game where both teams scored 100 or more points. PF Kristaps Porzingis (Achilles) is, however, questionable for New York, and it would be tough for the team to win this tough road game without its young stud.

If PF Kristaps Porzingis (20.1 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 1.9 BPG) is able to go then the Knicks would get a much-needed boost on Friday. New York blew the game on Wednesday night, so this team will need something to lift its spirits for this one. Porzingisí presence would be big in this game, as the Bucks have one of the longer and more athletic teams in the league. Heíd help defend the rim and also give SF Carmelo Anthony (22.1 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 2.9 APG, 1.0 SPG) some help. Anthony played well against the Bucks on Wednesday, finishing with 30 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists in the loss. While the Knicks didnít come away with a win, thatís exactly the type of effort the team will need from Anthony on Friday. He played unselfishly and needs to do that more often. PG Derrick Rose (17.6 PPG, 4.4 APG, 4.0 RPG) is, however, the x-factor in this game. Rose was lousy on Wednesday, shooting just 7-for-18 from the floor. The Knicks need him to be a lot more efficient this time around.

Antetokounmpo has emerged as a superstar this season, and he should continue to dominate the league moving forward. He was unstoppable against the Knicks on Wednesday, finishing with 27 points, 13 boards, four assists, three blocks and a steal in 39 minutes of action. He was also an efficient 10-of-18 from the floor. Look for Antetokounmpo to be even more aggressive in this one, as he knows he can get good shots whenever he wants against the Knicks. Also, expect a better game from PF Jabari Parker (20.3 PPG, 5.7 RPG) on Friday. Parker took only 10 shots against the Knicks last game, and he is far too good of a scorer for that to happen. He knows he canít be passive in this one and also happens to be a lot better at home. Heís averaging 21.9 PPG in Milwaukee and only 18.5 on the road.

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