The New York Knicks are coming off a critical victory over their chief pursuer in their battle to make the playoffs. A matchup with the woeful Washington Wizards, however, also could turn out to be a crucial contest.
The Knicks seek their fourth win in five games when they host the Wizards on Friday night, just before a pair of first-place teams visit Madison Square Garden.
New York (30-28) won 111-107 at Milwaukee on Wednesday, moving two games ahead of the Bucks for eighth place in the Eastern Conference with eight games left for both teams. J.R. Smith's 3-pointer with 1:04 left gave the Knicks the lead, and Carmelo Anthony had 32 points and 10 rebounds.
Tyson Chandler added 19 points and 11 boards for New York, which also is one game behind Philadelphia for the seventh spot.
"This is a game we had to have," coach Mike Woodson said.
It's possible Woodson sees Friday's meeting with Washington in similar terms. A home loss to the woeful Wizards (14-44) would leave the Knicks tr...