The Wizards will attempt to snap the New York Knicks’ 12-game winning streak on Tuesday at Madison Square Garden, but there is another streak of equal, or perhaps more, importance: they have lost nine straight games in New York, dating back to Dec. 6, 2006.
The Knicks demolished the Wizards, 108-87, when the teams met on Nov. 30, but the teams have split both meetings in Washington. John Wall has yet to play in New York this season, but he is averaging 18.5 points and 7.5 assists against the Knicks.
Carmelo Anthony is averaging 27 points in three games against the Wizards and has scored at least 30 in the past two meetings.
Anthony recently surpassed Kevin Durant as the league’s leading scorer and is averaging 38.2 points on 58.9 percent shooting in his past five games. He is averaging 32.7 points during the streak, which has help the Knicks move past the Indiana Pacers for the second seed in the Eastern Conference.
“Carmelo is just, he’s been playing at as high a level as he’s played all year,” Wizards coach Randy Wittman said. “He’s back being healthy and he’s scoring at a great pace for them and when that happens and the people they put around him at the three-point line is tough. We’ve got our hands full. It’s probably a playoff caliber game for them, because they want to stay at the No. 2 position as well as keep their streak.”
The Knicks will clinch their first Atlantic Division title since 1994-95 with a victory. Wittman said trying to keep up with New York will be a challenge.
“They are going to make some shots, and we can’t get discouraged. We’ve got to stay with what we want to do. There’s different ways that we’ll look to [defend Anthony]. You can’t do one thing. He’s too smart, too good of a player to figure out what you’re doing. So we’ll change up.”