New York, NY – Call it a bounceback Lin.
A loss to the lowly Hornets on Friday had temporarily quelled the Linsanity in New York, but the NBA's resident phenom, Jeremy Lin, scored 28 points to go with 14 assists on Sunday, leading the Knicks to a 104-97 win over the surging Dallas Mavericks.
Newly-acquired J.R. Smith added 15 points while Tyson Chandler finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Knicks, winners of eight of their last nine games. Steve Novak also had 14 points and Amare Stoudemire chipped in 11 and seven boards.
"It seems like the harder the moment, the better he shoots the ball," Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni said of Lin. "He's definitely fearless."
Lin had nine turnovers in Friday's loss and committed seven against the Mavericks. But he also facilitated well and sealed the win with a pair of long outlet passes to Smith and then Chandler in the final minute.
He had 10 points and three assists in the first quarter, sparking a 17-0 Knicks run which allowed them to take a 32-20 lead into the second.
The Mavericks battled back, though. They were down 48-45 at the half and opened the third with a 25-10 run to take a 12-point lead. Nowitzki had 13 points during the surge and capped it with a free throw to make it 70-58.
New York answered.
Lin cut the deficit to three, 75-72, with a dunk at the end of the third and Novak opened the fourth with a three-pointer to tie it. Dallas was up 80-78 minutes later when Novak struck again, hitting three straight threes. Lin followed with a trey of his own to give the Knicks a 90-81 lead, one they would not relinquish.
"They are going to hit threes," said Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle. "They are a good shooting team and they cause problems."
Dallas kept it close, though, and trailed 100-97 with under a minute to play when Lin came down with a Terry miss and found a leaking Smith for a runout layup.
With 17 seconds left, Lin came up with a steal and unleashed a lengthy pass to a streaking Chandler for the game-sealing dunk.
Lin has turned the ball over at least six times in each of the past six games...The Knicks signed Smith on Friday. He had been playing in China prior to the signing...Novak went 4-of-5 from three-point range...The Knicks played their seventh straight game without forward Carmelo Anthony. He is out with a groin injury.