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Smack / Nov 27, 2012 / 1:02 am

Brooklyn Draws First Blood In The Battle For New York; Brandon Knight Sends A Message To Damian Lillard

Brook Lopez

Brook Lopez, Dime #43

To New Yorkers, last night felt important. The Battle of the Boroughs felt like it mattered. Yes, most of the rest of the country could care less about who owns New York, but to everyone actually in the Big Apple, it’s like choosing between Hova and Nas. That’s probably why the first-ever matchup between the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets, a game that had been nearly a month in the making courtesy of Sandy, featured a college atmosphere and a high-on-life crowd split down the middle. On almost every trip down the floor, Knicks and Nets fans competed, serenading each other with their own chants in an attempt to flesh out the competition. The action on the court lived up to the billing as well. As Brook Lopez went off for 22 points, 11 boards and five blocks, the Nets held off their crosstown rivals in overtime, 96-89. If Lopez is your best player as he was last night – regardless of how nice his numbers looked – we feel like there’s a limit on how good you can be. But when you’re going up against a two-man team, and you’re getting help from just about everyone (Deron Williams dishing 14 assists, Reggie Evans (14 boards) dominating the glass, Gerald Wallace earning his stripes as the team’s energizer, heart and muscle, and Jerry Stackhouse doing everything you wouldn’t expect out of a 94-year-old), it makes a W come a little easier … On the other side, Carmelo Anthony (35 points, 13 boards) was a savage after the opening quarter. Once the Knicks ditched an awkward big lineup to start the game (and it destroyed ‘Melo’s first quarter flow, where he’s been ripping teams apart all season with 11 points a night in that quarter), Anthony was a machine. Also, Tyson Chandler missed one shot, finishing with 28 points, 10 rebounds and one manhood-stealing putback dunk on Lopez’s head where he climbed up the staircase nestled into the Brooklyn center’s back. But other than those two, the rest of the Knicks shot 10-for-47 … Just when we thought about taking the Bobcats seriously, they went out and took a dump on their reputation in a brutal matchup with OKC, losing 114-69. We wanted to tune in – the Bobcats early season run is on the verge of becoming more than just a trendy fad – but after about two minutes of watching Thabo Sefolosha shoot wide open three-pointers and Russell Westbrook tear off the rim with no defenders around him, we’d had enough. And because of the score, which was a 82-31 Thunder lead at one point, we never turned it on again … In Washington, the NBA’s other sorry ass team took their lumps on the chin against San Antonio, losing 118-92. But the one matchup the Wizards did win was Kevin Seraphin‘s duel with Tim Duncan. Early in the third quarter, Seraphin (18 points, seven rebounds) showed a little of his full game in a sequence that included a turnaround jump hook over Duncan, a short jumper that was all water, and then a roll to the rim off a pick-n-roll. Even though we got on him last week for turning into a bum in the final minutes of a recent Washington loss, he’s been one of the few bright spots this season, a surprising performance in an otherwise crummy debacle, like Val Kilmer in Alexander. His third quarter play didn’t matter though: after three quarters, San Antonio was up 22 and coasted from there … Keep reading to hear about Milwaukee’s epic comeback in Chicago …

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