User ID
  Forgot User ID
or Register Today!
Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Follow Us on Google+ VI Mobile Scores and Betting Odds
Betting Tools

Knicks trip up Raptors, 99-94

TORONTO (AP) - When the New York Knicks signed Kenyon Martin last month, they hoped the veteran big man might help them with a playoff push.

Left short-handed by a rash of frontcourt injuries, the Knicks are suddenly counting on Martin more than they ever imagined. Best of all, he's coming up big.

Carmelo Anthony scored 37 points, Martin had 19 points and 11 rebounds, and the Knicks clinched a playoff berth with a 99-94 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Friday night.

``He means a lot to this team right now,'' Anthony said of Martin, his one-time Denver teammate. ``We need him coming down the stretch.''

Making his fifth straight start, Martin connected on his first nine field goal attempts, not missing until 1:40 remained in the fourth quarter.

``He stepped up big time,'' New York coach Mike Woodson said. ``He scored for us, he rebounded, had a few blocks. He did a little bit of everything.''

Veteran guard Jason Kidd, who once played with Martin in New Jersey, said the 35-year-old has been an invaluable addition following injuries to big men Amare Stoudemire (right knee), Tyson Chandler (neck), Kurt Thomas (right foot) and Rasheed Wallace (left foot).

``He's a true professional,'' Kidd said. ``If we didn't have him we would be in trouble right now. He's playing big on both ends.''

Out of basketball before the Knicks came calling, Martin said he considers himself ``blessed'' to be back on the court and playing for a contender.

``I just tried to stay ready,'' he said. ``An opportunity came for me to come out and play. It's unfortunate that it's because of injury, but I'll take it.''

J.R. Smith scored 14 points as the Knicks earned their 41st win. That guaranteed they'll reach the playoffs for the third straight season, something they hadn't done since a 14-year streak of postseason appearances from 1988 to 2001.

With 15 games left and playoff seeding still undecided, Woodson doesn't want his team easing up.

``We can't have any slippage, no matter who we play, because Brooklyn is not going anywhere and Boston is not going anywhere,'' Woodson said.

The league's second-leading scorer, Anthony has 57 total points in his past two games after missing six of the previous eight with a sore right knee. His 43 minutes were about 10 more than Woodson had hoped he'd play, but Anthony wasn't complaining.

``I'll take on that challenge, I love that challenge, I want that challenge,'' he said. ``I wanted to see what I could do, especially being out and not playing the way I know how to play.''

The defeat was a double blow for Toronto, which lost for the 11th time in 15 games and saw forward Rudy Gay leave in the second with a sore back. Gay did not return, and his status for Saturday night's rematch in New York was not known.

Alan Anderson scored a career-high 35 points, DeMar DeRozan had 18 and Jonas Valanciunas 10 as the Raptors lost their third straight. Kyle Lowry led Toronto with 10 assists.

Down by 14 points midway through the third, the Raptors rallied to make a game of it in the fourth. A three-point play by DeRozan cut it to 84-82 with 6:17 left, but Anthony answered with a three-point play of his own, keying a 10-2 run that put the Knicks up 94-84 with 4:00 remaining.

A putback dunk by Terrence Ross cut it to 97-92 with 39 seconds left and, after Smith missed a pair of free throws, Anderson made two from the line, making it 97-94.

Anthony was fouled and made the first but missed the second, giving the Knicks a four-point edge. Jason Kidd grabbed the rebound when Ross's 3-point heave came up short, and capped it by making one of two from the line.

Chandler (neck) did not travel with the team, remaining in New York for treatment. Woodson said he doesn't know when Chandler, who last played March 13, will be cleared to return. The Knicks had earlier said they expected Chandler to miss about a week.

Raymond Felton's banked 3 gave the Knicks a 25-15 lead with two minutes left in the first but Anderson scored five straight points as the Raptors cut it to 25-22 after one.

Gay headed to the locker room with a sore back at 7:04 of the second and the Knicks pulled away. Anthony and Kidd each scored six as New York outscored Toronto 25-15 to open a 50-37 lead at the half. The Raptors made five of 20 field goal attempts in the quarter.

``We just had a lot of open misses,'' Anderson said. ``We weren't swinging the ball from side to side like we did in the previous two games against them.''

Anderson matched a Raptors record with 20 points in the third and Toronto made five of nine from 3-point range, but a turnaround, buzzer-beating 3 by Anthony gave the Knicks a 77-71 lead heading into the fourth.

NOTES: Stoudemire, Thomas and Wallace also skipped the trip to Toronto. ... Iman Shumpert started for the New York after sitting out the second half of Wednesday's win over Orlando with a sore left knee. ... Mike James was the last Toronto player to score 20 in a quarter, doing it in the fourth against Detroit on Apr. 14, 2006. ... Woodson expressed his sadness at the death of former Knicks captain Ray Williams, who died Friday at the age of 58. ``It's a major loss,'' Woodson said. ``He's a part of our Knicks family.'' ... Actor Isiah Whitlock Jr. attended the game.

The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2016
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved

David: Inside the Paint - Thursday
News: 2016-17 Win Total Best Bets
Marshall: East Betting Outlook
Marshall: West Betting Outlook
Lakers run past Rockets as home 'dogs
Grizzlies rally to stun Wolves, 102-98
Pacers outlast Mavericks in OT, 130-121
Heat cruise past Magic as road 'dogs
Westbrook, Thunder sneak by 76ers
Why Buy Picks From
NBA Pro Basketball Handicapper Sports Picks Records
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Paul Bovi + 3334
Chip Chirimbes + 2359
Kevin Rogers + 2258
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Paul Bovi 59 %
Greg Smith 57 %
Marc Lawrence 55 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Paul Bovi + 1899
Jimmy Boyd + 1029
Stephen Nover + 839
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 2612
Paul Bovi + 1349
NeiltheGreek + 553
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 2846
Paul Bovi + 1160
Mark Franco + 1143
NBA Pro Basketball Expert Sports Picks - Boston Celtics at Chicago Bulls
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Gary Bart + 518
Zack Cimini + 300
Jimmy Boyd + 290
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
Gary Bart + 518
Zack Cimini + 300
Jimmy Boyd + 290
Percentage Leaders
Handicapper Pct
Brian Edwards 100 %
Paul Bovi 100 %
Kyle Hunter 100 %
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Stephen Nover + 200
Doc's Sports + 200
Kevin Rogers + 200
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bruce Marshall + 290
The Gold Sheet + 200
Bill Marzano + 200
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bill Marzano + 200
Jimmy Boyd + 200
Mark Franco + 100
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 10% off a Live Odds subscription, SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership