Bernard King made his 500th regular-season game his best: his career-high 52 points enabled the Knicks to beat the Indiana Pacers, 119-110, in New York last night.
The Knicks have won five straight and it is not coincidental that last night's game was the third straight in which King had scored 40 or more points. It was the fourth time in his career he'd had 50 or more.
He shot 19 of 31 from the field and 14 of 17 from the line before leaving with 3:11 left in the game.
It was a court record at Madison Square Garden and only the seventh time a Knicks' player has scored 50 or more. King also had 45 points Friday against Detroit and 40 Wednesday against Cleveland.
"It was a great exhibition, an accumulation of a superlative week," Coach Hubie Brown said. "We needed the wins and he rose to the occasion."
"I'm happy we've won five in a row," King said. "I don't play basketball to score, but it's great when it happens."
King, who entered the game second in the NBA in scoring with a 31.5-point average, had 26 in each half.
With New York ahead, 65-53, at halftime, King accounted for 12 of the Knicks' first 16 points as they moved to a 91-69 lead after three quarters.
Brown drew two consecutive technicals from referee Mike Lauerman and was ejected at 1:55 of the second quarter for disputing a foul call. Assistant Rick Pitino took over.
Butch Carter of the Knicks scored 21 points and Pat Cummings 18.
Jim Thomas topped Indiana with 24 points. Vern Fleming had 20.