Game #28: Miami Heat (19-8) vs. New York Knicks (16-10)

I don't know about you guys, but I'm excited as hell for tonight's game between the Heat and the Knicks.  God only knows the last time these two teams played each other when both were above .500 and considered contenders.  We may have to go back to the late 90's, when the rivalry between these teams was alive and well.  Hopefully now that rivalry will come alive again because it has the potential of being one of the best in the league. 

The Knicks come to South Florida playing better then that team has in years.  New York had won 8 consecutive games before coming up just short on Wednesday night against Boston in what some are calling the game of the season so far.  For the first time in a while the Madison Square Garden faithful have something significant to be excited about.

For two years the New York Knicks were preparing their roster and making cap space to attack last summer's free agent pool, and they made it no secret that LeBron James was on the top of their wish list.  Unfortunately for the Knicks, and every other team in the NBA, Pat Riley was doing the same thing down here in Miami and we all know how that worked out.

Luckily for New York fans the Knicks didn't completely miss out on free agent talent. Amare Stoudemire is emerging as an early candidate for MVP and seems to be embracing a leadership role on his new club.  Amare has set a Knicks franchise record by scoring at least 30 points in 9 consecutive games and seems to be thriving under coach Mike D'Antoni.  The two had their differences back in Phoenix but that all seems to be a thing of the past now. 

The other big addition to the Knicks is point guard Raymond Felton.  Hs has slipped under the radar thanks to so much attention going to Stoudemire but make no mistake, Felton has been a big part of why New York has been playing so well.  He's put up double figure scoring in all but one game this year, averaging 18.7 points on 46% shooting.  Add to that 8.9 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 1.9 steals in just under 39 minutes a game.

GAME NOTES

  • Miami has won 8 games this year by 20 or more points. 
  • Last season the Heat swept the Knicks during the regular season and have beaten them 5-straight tines. 
  • For the 2nd game in a row the Knicks will host a team riding a 10-game winning streak. 
  • Miami has also won 5 consecutive road games.
  • Injury report remains the same for the Heat with Mike Miller (thumb) and Udonis Haslem (foot) out.
  • As for New York, guard Kelenna Azubuike (knee) is out.

Tipoff from the Garden is set for 7pm and the game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN. If you want to go to the game but don't have tickets, don't forget about Peninsula Is Mightier's new partnership with TiqIQ that not only helps you get tickets right here on PIM but they also search through several ticket selling websites and finds you the best deals out there.  Click here to see what's available.

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