The New York Knicks carry a four-game winning streak into Monday night's home contest against the Detroit Pistons at Madison Square Garden.
The Knicks haven't lost since a Jan. 26 setback in Philadelphia against the 76ers. All four wins during this great run came at home and Monday's game concludes a five-game homestand.
The most recent victory for the Knicks came Saturday night against the Sacramento Kings, a 120-81 rout, which marked their second-highest scoring output of the season. The top one came against these same Pistons on Nov. 25 in a 121-100 triumph.
What made the offensive outburst against the Kings all the more impressive was the fact that Carmelo Anthony, who is second in the NBA in scoring, had only nine points. It snapped a franchise record 31 straight games with at least 20 points.
"Tonight was one of those games where we tried to find it elsewhere," Anthony said. "We didn't need my scoring tonight."
J.R. Smith led the way with 25 points and Amare Stoudemire added 21. Steve Novak had 15 on 5-for-7 shooting from 3-point range. Kurt Thomas chipped in 11 as those four bench players helped the reserves combine for 82 points.
Tyson Chandler, who will make his first All-Star appearance in a little less than two weeks, also scored 11 points, but enjoyed his second straight game with 20 rebounds.
The last time these two sides met was in London on Jan. 17. The Knicks won, 102-87, for their ninth victory in the last 10 meetings with the Pistons.
Since the game in England, the Pistons are 4-5 and losers in three of their last four. On Sunday, Detroit lost a heartbreaker to the Los Angeles Lakers, 98-97, at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
After L.A.'s Earl Clark missed a pair of free throws with 16 seconds left on the clock and the Lakers up one, Will Bynum, who cut the Pistons' deficit to one with a slashing layup, drove the lane for a tough lay-in, but the ball rattled out.
"It's tough," Bynum said about the shot. "I work so hard and I thrive to be in situations like that. To be in there and not deliver is kind of crushing sometimes, especially when my teammates and coaching staff trust me to make the right decisions. It wasn't my night."
Greg Monroe paced the Pistons with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Bynum had 18 off the bench and 10 assists. Three other Detroit players cracked the 10-point mark.
The Pistons may finally get some help in the form of recently-acquired point guard Jose Calderon. The Spaniard hasn't been able to play due to visa issues following his trade from Toronto, but he may be available on Monday.
Detroit has lost six straight in New York and hasn't won at MSG since April 8, 2009.