NEW YORK KNICKS (38-22)
at GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (35-29)
Tip-off: Monday, 10:35 p.m. ET
Line: Golden State -3, Total: 202.5
The injury-riddled Knicks seek their fourth straight road win on Monday night when they visit the struggling Warriors.
New York is coming off a 113-84 blowout victory Saturday over the Jazz in which SF Carmelo Anthony missed his third straight game with a sore knee and PF Amar'e Stoudemire (knee surgery) sat out the first of what will be many games in the next 4-to-6 weeks. Anthony is questionable for Monday's game, and the Knicks could be especially hurting without their star in this one, as they try to handle Golden State's fast-paced offense. However, the Warriors could also be missing their best frontcourt player in PF David Lee, who is questionable after suffering a right knee contusion on Friday that kept him off the court for Saturday's loss, marking the team's sixth defeat (SU and ATS) in the past eight games. Golden State has dominated this series since 2003, going 15-5 SU (13-6-1 ATS), but the Knicks won 109-105 when these teams last met on Feb. 27, despite the heroics of Warriors SG Stephen Curry who scored 54 points on 11-of-13 threes in the losing effort.
Can the injury-depleted Knicks pull one out in Oakland? For the answer, connect to NBA Best Bets for all the Expert picks throughout the entire 2012-13 season. All four experts continue to sizzle in NBA Best Bets. StatFox Gary is 73% ATS (11-4) in March and 73% ATS (19-7) since Feb. 20, StatFox Brian is 67% ATS in March (10-5), including 70% ATS (7-3) in the past seven days, StatFox Scott is 62% ATS (34-21) since Feb. 3 and StatFox Dave is 58% ATS (7-5) in the past seven days. Since February began, the experts are a collective 57.3% ATS (126-94), including 55% ATS (33-27) in March. Scott is now 56% ATS (104-82-1) for the season, while Gary is 54% ATS (82-71-4) and Brian is 52% ATS (100-94-3). For NBA Totals, Gary is a perfect 4-0 in the past three days, while Scott is 65% (11-6-1) since Feb. 22 to raise his season record to 57% (87-67-1) in Totals.
SF Carmelo Anthony is still dealing with a sore knee, and the Knicks really needed him two weeks ago to outlast the Warriors, as he drained 35 points and dished out eight assists in that victory. But New York had no problem beating down on Utah on Saturday without Anthony, thanks to great performances from PG Raymond Felton, SF Steve Novak and SG J.R. Smith. Felton set the pace for the Knicks with 15 points (6-for-10 FG), four assists and a ridiculous +34 rating in his 24 minutes. Felton was making the right plays all night and opened up the floor for his teammates. Smith continued to provide instant offense for New York, finishing with a game-high 24 points (10-of-18 FG) and six rebounds, while Novak pumped in 20 points on 7-of-12 FG (5-of-10 threes). Smith also scored 26 points (6-of-11 threes) in the win over Golden State on Feb. 27, but Knicks C Tyson Chandler stole the show with 16 points and 28 rebounds, with 10 of those boards occurring on the offensive glass.
Golden State is coming off two straight big home losses, falling 94-88 to Houston on Friday and getting drilled 103-93 by the Bucks on Saturday. In that defeat to Milwaukee, the sharp-shooting backcourt of Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson combined to go make just 14-of-35 FG (4-of-11 threes) with a combined minus-22 rating, while the Bucks starting backcourt of Brandon Jennings and Monta Ellis combined for 57 points on 57% FG with a +21 rating. Thompson scored just six points on 3-of-13 FG in the loss at New York last month, but he has made 47% FG and 49% threes in five games since, leading to 21.0 PPG. PF David Lee was greatly missed in the Bucks game as Golden State lacked size and offense down low, but PF Carl Landry and C Andrew Bogut combined for 19 rebounds to give the Warriors a slight 47-42 rebounding edge in that defeat. This season, the All-Star Lee is averaging 18.9 PPG and 11.1 RPG, and although he wasn't able to play against the Knicks last month, he has averaged a hefty 20.5 PPG (60% FG) and 7.5 RPG in two career games against his former team.