WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 08: Jeremy Lin #17 of the New York Knicks and Mike Bibby #20 celebrate after Lin scored against the Washington Wizards during the second half at Verizon Center on February 8, 2012 in Washington, DC. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Would you believe that Jeremy Lin led the New York Knicks to another win? Because he did!
The New York Knicks are on an improbable three-game win streak after Jeremy Lin had another strong game for the 'Bockers on Wednesday, racking up 23 points and 10 assists in a road victory over the Washington Wizards. On the one hand: it was the Wizards, now 5-21 on the season. On the other hand, this just doesn't really happen at the NBA level, especially before the season has devolved to entire games worth of garbage time. (It is becoming increasingly difficult to argue that every Wizards game isn't a full 48 of garbage time, though.)
The Knicks have won the last two games largely without either Carmelo Anthony (groin injury) or Amar'e Stoudemire (death of brother); there's no telling how Lin's game will be forced to evolve when his high-profile teammates return. ('Melo left Monday's game against the Jazz in the first quarter.) But for the time being, one thing is clear: the Lin-Tyson Chandler pick-and-roll is murder. Chandler racked up 25 points on 7-12 shooting; he's been unleashed during the Linsanity Era.
New York ended up with an offensive efficiency of 119, with Steve Novak hitting five three-pointers off of the bench and totaling 19 points. John Wall had a big game opposite Lin with 29 points on 12-21 shooting with six assists and just one turnover, but he didn't get a whole lot of help on either end. Washington shot just 2-17 on three-pointers; Nick Young and Jordan Crawford, the team's designated gunners, combined to go 0-8 from long-range.
In other action:
Cavaliers 99, Clippers 92: Cleveland stunned L.A., as the Clippers' defense played as poorly as it has in weeks. That the Cavs did it without Kyrie Irving (concussion) is all the more reason for some head-shaking. Ramon Sessions had 24 points and 13 assists in Irving's spot, and a thousand Lakers fans just drooled on cue.
Grizzlies 85, Wolves 80: The rims won this game. The teams combined to shoot 38 percent; with all of that awful shooting, Memphis' advantage on the offensive glass (21-10) sealed the game.