Newark, NJ – Carmelo Anthony scored 33 points and Tyson Chandler added 18 points and 10 rebounds, as the Knicks inched closer to a postseason berth with an easy 104-95 win over the lowly Nets.
The Knicks avoided a letdown a day after an emotional 118-110 victory over the Celtics, leading wire-to-wire on Wednesday to hold steady as the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference standings. They currently own a 3 1/2-game lead over ninth-place Milwaukee with four games remaining.
J.R. Smith chipped in 15 points off New York's bench, contributing three of the club's 13 three-pointers.
Gerald Wallace, who missed the previous four games with a sore hamstring, paced the Nets with 21 points, while Sundiata Gaines netted 18 points in their third straight loss.
Anthony, fresh off his second career triple-double on Tuesday, stayed hot with 21 points in the first quarter on 8-of-10 shooting, which included a 4-for-4 effort from long range.
The Knicks led by 16 after putting up a season-high 38 first-quarter points and owned a 64-47 advantage at halftime.
They went cold in the third and did not make a field goal over the first four- plus minutes. The Nets scored 10 straight points during the drought and cut their deficit to 78-71 heading to the fourth.
The Prudential Center crowd, comprised mostly of Knicks fans, saw New York keep the hosts at bay in the fourth. A Wallace three-point play pulled New Jersey within 86-78 early on, but the Knicks scored 12 of the next 17 points to pull away for good.
Anthony came in averaging a league-high 32.1 points per game in April...The Knicks were without starting point guard Baron Davis because a stomach virus. Mike Bibby had eight points and eight assists in Davis' absence...Nets point guard Deron Williams sat out due to a sore right calf.