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ONE FOR THE ROAD: KNICKS BEAT RAPTORS

November 11, 2015, Queens, NY  The New York Knicks continued their strong play on the road by defeating the Toronto Raptors last night, 111-109. This is the third win on the road for the Knicks who are back to .500 with a 4-4 record. Last year, the worst in Knicks history, they could only muster seven wins on the road.

Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 25 points (17 points in the 2nd quarter), and back-up Lance Thomas scored 17 points. Robin Lopez had a solid performance scoring 12 points, grabbing 8 boards, and blocking 4 shots. DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry scored 29 and 23 points respectively for Toronto.

Knicks rookie sensation, Kristpas Porzingis (who PureSportsNY’s editor-in-chief Jerald Hoover predicted would be a force as a rookie) scored eight points to go with six rebounds in twenty minutes of play. Porzingis is one of the top rookies in the league, entering last night’s game ranked (amongst other rookies) 4th in point (12.3), 2nd in rebounds (8.6), tied for 2nd in steals (1.3), and tied for 2nd in blocks (1.3).

The Knicks came out strong in the first quarter building a seven-point lead by the quarter’s end, 24-17. The second quarter was more about offense (and less about defense) with the Knicks and Raptors amassing 36 and 35 points respectively giving the Knicks a somewhat comfortable lead by halftime, 60-52. Entering the fourth quarter, the Knicks found themselves tied at 85.  Jerian Grant gave the Knicks the lead for good when he made two free throws to give the Knicks a 93-91 lead.

The loss dropped the Raptors to 5-3. Their next game is against the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday in the City of Brotherly Love. The Knicks stay on the road traveling to Charlotte for a Wednesday evening game against the Hornets.

While it’s too early to assume the Knicks will be playoff participants, they are clearly a rejuvenated team, and second-year head coach Derek Fisher is settling in and gaining confidence. The Knicks have many new players on the team but are seemingly developing good chemistry even though the season is still in its infancy.

Professor Clifford Benton can be reached at @cliffordbenton.

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