After missing two games, Anthony Davis returned and immediately made his presence felt. He hit 3 of his first 4 shots and scored 9 points in the first quarter, besting his assignment, the rookie Kristaps Porzingis, by a mile (1-7 start). Although Davis would go on to tally 18 points, 7 rebounds and 4 blocks in the first half, Porzingis proved multiple times that he's not going to be some stiff (despite the 2-11 start), even blocking away an elbow jumper by Davis.
Much like how the Pelicans allowed the Raptors to stay in the game with trips to the foul line, the Knicks did it with offensive rebounds during the first half. They dominated with 9 offensive boards to none for the Pelicans, leading to a 15-0 edge in second chance points.
The second half began much like what fans are accustomed to seeing out of the Pelicans -- flat -- as the Knicks started the 3rd quarter on an 8-0 run. Following a timeout, New Orleans found their stride, or put more appropriately, Davis saddled up the team on his back. He posted a 10-point quarter to minimize the damage as the Pelicans entered the 4th quarter down 68-65.
After Ryan Anderson's first triple of the game, the Pelicans self-destructed. Silly turnovers and poor shots plagued them for the umpteenth time this season and the Knicks took advantage, racing out to a 10-point lead. They never looked back and the Pelicans have now lost 9 of their first 10 games of the season.
Anthony Davis led the way for the Pelicans with 36 points, 11 rebounds, 4 blocks and 2 threes. Ryan Anderson poured in 16 points and Eric Gordon added 11, a far cry from his 30 a few days ago.
Carmelo Anthony was the high man for the Knicks with 29 points, 13 rebounds and 3 assists. Not surprisingly, Kristaps Porzinigis struggled to a 10-point, 4-rebound effort as Davis blanketed him well (4-15 FGs), but the Knicks bench picked him up by contributing 42 points.
Stay tuned for another depressing full recap.