Brooklyn, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 16 points to lead the New York Knicks to a 109-98 win over the Brooklyn Nets.
Playing without leading scorer Carmelo Anthony, the Knicks claimed the season series against their crosstown rivals.
New York announced prior to the game that Anthony would be shut down for the remaining two games after an MRI revealed a small tear in the labrum of his right shoulder. The injury will not require surgery and he will be reevaluated in a month.
Amar'e Stoudemire, J.R. Smith and Shannon Brown each scored 14 points in the win and Cole Aldrich added 13 points and 13 rebounds.
"You enjoy it more when you're in (the playoff hunt), when you're fighting for something." Smith said of the win.
Marcus Thornton netted 24 points for the Nets, who squandered an opportunity to lock up the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference.
Brooklyn now leads Washington by one game for the sixth seed in the East. The Nets close out their season on Wednesday in Cleveland, while the Wizards travel to Boston.
Washington owns the tiebreaker with a better head-to-head record.
Mason Plumlee tallied 16 points with nine rebounds and Paul Pierce dropped in 13 in the setback.
Pierce's 3-pointer to open the game marked his 1,000th point of the season, which made him the sixth player in history to record 1,000 points in 15 straight seasons.
"We want guys to be healthy going into the playoffs," said Pierce. "One of our biggest strengths is our depth so it's important that the guys get healthy for us to try and make this run."
New York held a three-point edge late in the first quarter when Hardaway buried 3-pointers around a Brown layup to help the Knicks to a 29-18 lead after 12 minutes.
The Knicks maintained their advantage throughout the second, holding the Nets to 2-of-11 shooting from beyond the arc in the first half and taking a 55-43 lead into the locker room at half.
New York, meanwhile, shot a blistering 7-of-11 from 3-point range, with Smith, Hardaway and Toure' Murry each making two shots apiece from deep.
Raymond Felton's 3 less than five minutes into the third staked the Knicks to a 68-51 margin. The Knicks led by as many as 18 in the period and took an 83-67 edge into the fourth.
The Knicks weren't threatened in the fourth and led by double digits throughout en route to the win.
New York finished the game 11-for-21 from 3-point range ... The Knicks were 34-for-40 from the free throw line ... Brooklyn connected on 22-of-31 shots from the charity stripe ... Plumlee tied a career-high with four assists.