WHAT IT MEANS: The Knicks' season ended in embarrassing fashion on Wednesday night.
New York lost, 106-94, in Game 5 of its first-round series against Miami. The loss allowed the Heat to close out the best-of-seven series, 4-1.
The Knicks trailed by as many as 19 on Wednesday and seemed to lack the intensity of a team with its back against the wall.
They shot the ball poorly for most of the night and were outscored on fast-break points, 20-4. Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 35 points but needed 31 shots to get there, and their second star, Amare Stoudemire, had 14 points and just four rebounds in 31 minutes.
With the loss, the Knicks became the 102nd team in NBA history to go down 3-0 and lose the series. No team has ever come back to win after falling behind 3-0.
THE BAD: The Knicks' two superstars came up small when the team needed them most. Anthony shot the ball poorly early on, but he looked like an All-Star next to Stoudemire.
The Knicks' power forward was in foul trouble throughout the night. He had just four rebounds in 31 minutes. How bad is that? He was outrebounded by Mike Bibby, who pulled down six boards.
Stoudemire picked up his fifth foul with 6:41 to play in the third and his sixth with 4:48 to go in the fourth.
After Stoudemire picked up his sixth, the Heat PA announcer said he'd been "extinguished" -- a reference to Stoudemire suffering a laceration on his left hand after punching the glass encasing of a fire extinguisher after Game 2.
J.R. OFF THE MARK: J.R. Smith had a terrible night from the floor. He went 3-for-15 for the second straight game, missing eight of his first ten shots. In the Knicks' final three games, Smith, who is expected to opt out of his contract after the season, went 11-for-48.
CLOSING OUT THE SECOND QUARTER: The Knicks got within three points, at 45-42, with 2:42 to go in the second when Anthony knocked down a 14-foot jumper.
That's when Dwyane Wade took over. After a Mario Chalmers 3-pointer and a LeBron James jumper, Wade knocked down two circus jumpers to close out the half, adding a free throw after the second one to give Miami an 11-point halftime lead.
James finished with 29 points and Wade and Chris Bosh had 19 each.
THE GOOD: Not much to report here, other than Bibby playing well. Starting at point guard for the injured Baron Davis, Bibby had 10 points, six rebounds and five assists.
BOLD PLAY OF THE GAME: Stoudemire beat Bosh baseline and dunked directly over Joel Anthony to cut the Heat lead to 44-40 with three minutes to go in the second quarter. Things generally went downhill from there for the Knicks.
WHAT'S NEXT: An offseason full of question marks. Will Mike Woodson be hired as the Knicks' head coach next season? Can Anthony and Stoudemire figure out how to play together? Will the team re-sign Jeremy Lin, who will be a restricted free agent this summer?
We'll find out soon enough.
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