NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Sunday, January 23rd (All times eastern)
Milwaukee Bucks (14-24) at New York Knicks (17-22), 3 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Just one day after their head coach resigned, the New York Knicks must adjust their focus this afternoon when they try to stop a five- game losing streak against the Milwaukee Bucks at Madison Square Garden.
Lenny Wilkens, who had been rumored to be next on Knicks general manager Isiah Thomas' chopping block, chose to bow out on Saturday. Assistant coach Herb Williams will take over for Wilkens in the interim, while Thomas seeks a full- time successor.
New York dropped its ninth in 10 games on Friday night, falling 92-91 to the Houston Rockets at MSG. Scott Padgett sunk the Knicks with a off-balance jumper at the buzzer.
Stephon Marbury had 20 points and Jamal Crawford tallied 18 points for the Knicks, who have lost five straight. Michael Sweetney posted 15 points and eight rebounds, while Kurt Thomas registered 11 points and 13 rebounds in the tough loss.
New York shot just 40 percent from the field, including only 3-of-10 (.300) from three-point range. The Knicks did hit 22-of-25 from the free throw line and outrebounded Houston, 44-40.
After trailing by 10 points, 82-72, 4:40 into the fourth, the Knicks began to mount a comeback. New York scored 19 of the next 25 points to go ahead 91-88 with 1:31 left. Strong free throw shooting got the Knicks into it, hitting 13- of-15 from the line in the stanza. Jerome Williams hit a pair from the line with 1:51 on the clock to give the Knicks an 89-88 edge. Then, Marbury hit two from the stripe to cap the run and extend the lead to 91-88.
That, however, would be it from New York. Yao Ming hit a jumper to make it a 91-90 contest with 1:14 remaining and a pair of New York mistakes gave the Rockets one final chance for Padgett.
New York guard Allan Houston missed the game to rest his surgically repaired knee. Houston has been struggling with the injury after playing extended minutes while Crawford was hurt. It is unknown how much Houston will play this afternoon.
New York has dropped three straight and five of six at home. The Knicks are only 11-9 in their friendly confines this season.
Milwaukee got back on the winning track on Friday night, posting an 89-86 victory over Detroit at the Bradley Center. Mike James scored a team-high 20 points against his former club in the win.
James came off the bench to hit 6-of-9 field goal attempts, including four three-pointers, to lead Milwaukee, which won for just the second time in seven outings. Joe Smith had 14 points, Michael Redd finished with 13 and Desmond Mason chipped in with 10 for the Bucks.
Keith Van Horn scored seven points in 23 minutes off the bench. Van Horn will continue to be limited to 15 to 20 minutes a game on doctor's orders as he recovers from right ankle tendinitis.
The Bucks are 10-8 as the host this season. Meanwhile, Milwaukee is only 4-16 in foreign buildings this season. Milwaukee has lost four of five and seven of its last nine road games.
These teams split four meetings last season with New York winning the final two tilts. The squads have split the last 12 meetings overall. Milwaukee has lost two of three and three of its last five at New York.
01/23 10:15:13 ET