Instant analysis: Knicks 98, Wizards 89

Instant analysis: Knicks 98, Wizards 89
October 17, 2013, 9:15 pm
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Highlights: Knicks 98, Wizards 89

(Associated Press)

FINAL: New York 98, Washington 89

BALTIMORE -- Again, the Wizards played a game that was basically home court. 

And most of the cheers from the 12,376 at Baltimore Arena were greater for the opponent.

Bradley Beal had a game-high 21 points on 8-for-17 shooting, including 3 of 8 three-pointers for the Wizards.  

They have lost three of four preseason games, with their only victory coming Tuesday at Verizon Center vs. the Miami Heat. In that game, most of the 14,000 in attendance cheered loudest for the visiting team.

Here, it was more of the same as Carmelo Anthony returned home with the Knicks. After they fell behind 62-61 on a three-pointer from Beal, Anthony heated up to help his team regain the lead by as many as 16.

Anthony, who didn't play in the fourth quarter, finished with a game-high 22 points on 8-for-17 shooting. Both teams used reserves in the fourth. 

John Wall shot 6-for-15, including 1-for-6 from three, for 14 points and had eight assists. He also had no turnovers and two steals. 

Turning point: A competitive game flipped in the second quarter because of an unproductive second unit. It began with an eight-second violation. They only had four points on 0-for-11 shooting when Al Harrington made the first field goal at 4:43 made it 42-36. The four points had come on free throws by Beal and Martell Webster. 

Best in show: Beal. He's on fire already, attacking defenders with the dribble and the basket. His spin move for a reverse flip gave the Wizards a 26-22 lead but led to Iman Shumpert, who was defending him on the play, to leave the game with a sprained right elbow. 

For the Knicks, rookie Tim Hardaway lit up the scoreboard with his ability to score seemingly at will. The reserve had 14 points on 5-for-12 shooting, including 3 of 6 from three.

Almost perfect: After being turnover-prone in the first quarters in their first three preseason games, the Wizards didn't have any in the initial 10 minutes. Then Beal and Webster had one each. That efficiency resulted in them not playing from behind early, taking a 30-29 lead on 48% shooting. They finished with 14, a significant improvement from 20 or more in the three previous games.

Talking points: 1). Where is Wall's jump shot? He's 18-for-53, or 34%, through four games. 2). Booker started again, going 3-for-3 in 24 minutes for seven points and nine rebounds. 3). Without Emeka Okafor (herniated disk) or Nene in the middle, the Wizards weren't out-rebounded for the second game in a row. 

DNP: As expected, Nene didn't play even though he was in uniform. The 7-footer didn't practice Thursday morning, or partake in pre-game or halftime warmups. He'd been in Brazil for a family matter. Garrett Temple didn't log any minutes for the second time in three games. 

Up next: The Wizards likely will practice Friday before leaving for Lexington, Ky., where they'll face the New Orleans Pelicans at Rupp Arena. 

From the locker room: “Too inconsistent. I thought we came out, start of the game, moved the ball, had eight assists. We’re our own worst enemy right now in understanding that’s how we’ve got to play." -- coach Randy Wittman

"We just got to keep moving the ball, especially like we did against the Heat the other night. We moved the ball throughout the whole game, first group and second group." -- Wall

“We’ll be fine. There’s 82 games, it’s a long year.  We’re doing fine right now. We’ll get the flow of it.  Sometimes we’re out of sync, and we’re still getting a feel for each other, so to speak, playing against other teams.  The concepts are different, but as soon as the season gets rolling, I think we will be fine." -- Beal