The New York Knicks have won five consecutive games and will put that streak on the line Wednesday night when they host the Memphis Grizzlies.
The Knicks collected their fifth straight victory on Tuesday when they handled the Boston Celtics, 100-85. J.R. Smith scored 32 off the bench and Carmelo Anthony added 29 in a great effort for New York.
Those two shouldered the load on Tuesday in a big way. Anthony hoisted 30 shots and Smith had 24. The next closest Knicks player in terms of shot attempts was Kenyon Martin, who attempted seven field goals.
The team only committed eight turnovers on a night when they only shot 43 percent from the field and 28 percent from the 3-point line.
The Knicks are in a virtual tie with the Indiana Pacers for the second seed in the Eastern Conference. They lead the Atlantic Division by 2 1/2 games over the Brooklyn Nets.
"We're starting to play a little bit how we played early in the year, in terms of letting our defense dictate how we play and then, offensively, we've been flowing and sharing the basketball," said head coach Mike Woodson.
The Knicks might have some revenge on their minds Wednesday night. After opening the season 6-0, the Grizzlies beat the Knicks by 10 in Memphis in a chippy game that saw three different Knicks and Coach Woodson pick up technical fouls.
The Grizzlies have lost two of their last three, including a 107-94 setback on Monday to the Wizards in Washington.
With Marc Gasol sidelined for his second straight game with an abdominal tear, Mike Conley led the way with 23 points, seven assists and three steals. That's a rock-solid game, but it was far and away the second-best performance of the night.
John Wall of the Wizards had a career-high 47 points on 13-for-22 field-goal shooting and 19-for-24 free-throw shooting.
"We couldn't make any shots and we couldn't stop the kid," said Memphis coach Lionel Hollins, referring to Wall.
The Grizzlies shot 44 percent from the field, but Washington shot 50 percent. It was a down defensive performance for the league's second-best team in opponents' scoring.
Memphis has locked up a playoff spot, but has fallen to fifth in the Western Conference, one-half game behind the Los Angeles Clippers and a full game out of the Denver Nuggets.
Gasol is expected to be out for some time. Hollins started Ed Davis on Saturday in a win over the Boston Celtics, but Darrell Arthur was with the first unit on Monday.
The Grizzlies have won two in a row against the Knicks and are 2-2 in their last four in Madison Square Garden.