The New York Knicks got their star big man, Amar'e Stoudemire, back from injury on Wednesday night. Unfortunately, he was not imbued with defensive ability while on the shelf. The Knicks' defense as a whole performed poorly as the Charlotte Bobcats racked up the points in a 118-110 win at Madison Square Garden.
The Bobcats shot 55 percent from the floor and hit 7-11 three-pointers. Stoudemire provided 25 points on 10-19 shooting, but his matchup Boris Diaw answered with 27 points on 12-15 shooting. Diaw also had six assists and five turnovers; Stoudemire had a good night on the glass with 12 boards, and hit 1-3 from three-point range.
Carmelo Anthony won his matchup handily, dropping 32 points on 12 of 24 shooting against Corey Maggette and friends, and Iman Shumpert was electric off the bench with 18 on 6-10 shooting (4-6 from three). But the Knicks had trouble slowing Charlotte at all, especially in the paint. Byron "Don't Call Me B.J." Mullens had 16 off the bench for the Bobcats.
The Knicks and Bobcats are now both 2-4.
In other action:
Nuggets 110, Kings 83: The Kings are looking to become the first team to get completely trounced in all three games in a back-to-back-to-back on Thursday after a drubbing in Denver. Sacramento shot 32 percent from the floor. Denver shot 60 percent.
Grizzlies 90, Timberwolves 86: Another huge night for Kevin Love (27-14), another promising performance for Ricky Rubio (12-10) ... another loss for the Wolves. Tony Allen shot 8-8 to lead the Grizzlies with 20 points.
76ers 101, Hornets 93: Philadelphia moved to 3-2 as Jrue Holiday had 23 points and eight assists and Evan Turner offered 21 points, six rebounds and four assists off of the bench. Eric Gordon returned to the New Orleans lineup and scored 22 on 22 shots.
Magic 103, Wizards 85: Dwight Howard was a monster with 28 points and 20 rebounds, and Ryan Anderson was likewise nasty with 23 points and 15 rebounds. No Wizard had more rebounds than Jordan Crawford's seven. The Wizards shot 36.6 percent from the floor.
Raptors 92, Cavaliers 77: The Raptors are 3-3 -- so are the Cavaliers -- thanks to a great defensive performance that held Cleveland to 29.6 percent shooting. Cleveland did everything but put the ball in the bucket; the team's guards combined to shoot 9-34. The Raps were led by Andrea Bargnani, who scored 31 on 11-16 shooting.