NEW YORK – The “laughingstocks” won in a laugher.
The Knicks resembled the division champions of a season ago rather than the biggest losers in New York, outplaying and even outtalking the Brooklyn Nets, who look like the real Big Apple busts.
Carmelo Anthony had 19 points and 10 rebounds, Iman Shumpert scored a season-high 17 points, and the Knicks ended a nine-game losing streak with a 113-83 romp Thursday night in the first meeting of the season between the city rivals.
“I think everybody looked like they had that feeling that we were tired of losing,” Anthony said. “It showed from the tipoff.”
The Knicks (4-13) snapped a tie with the Nets (5-14) for most losses in New York, winning the game and the crowd with a dominant second half that had Spike Lee and the rest of the fans wearing blue and orange cheering perhaps the Knicks’ most complete performance of the season.
Andrea Bargnani scored 16 before he was ejected in the fourth quarter, Knicks fans roaring in support of him standing up to Kevin Garnett.
Brook Lopez had 24 points and nine rebounds for Brooklyn, which again played without Paul Pierce, Deron Williams, or much passion in the second half.
“We’re struggling but we’re going to come out of this, man, that’s the only way to think,” Garnett said. “I’m not going to think anything else.”
The game was nationally televised, as all four matchups are this season, but neither team had been giving fans much reason to watch. Nets coach Jason Kidd said Tuesday that both teams “stink,” and Anthony not only agreed but added that the Knicks were the “laughingstock” of the league.
Nobody was laughing at the Knicks on this night.
Bulls 107, Heat 87
In Chicago, Carlos Boozer scored 27 points, and the Bulls beat LeBron James and Miami.
Luol Deng had 20 points, Taj Gibson chipped in with 19, and Joakim Noah added 17 points and 15 rebounds as Chicago had no trouble knocking off the defending champions.
James scored 21 points for Miami, but the Heat shot a season low for the second straight game, converting 41.6 percent from the field.
Clippers 101, Grizzlies 81
In Memphis, reserves Darren Collison and Jamal Crawford scored 15 points each and Los Angeles used a strong second half to beat the Grizzlies.
Chris Paul also had 15 points and eight assists as the Clippers, snapped a two-game losing streak.
Blake Griffin added 14 points and nine rebounds, while DeAndre Jordan had 10 points and 14 boards for Los Angeles.
Kosta Koufos led Memphis with 17 points.