W2W4: Knicks at Clippers

March, 17, 2013
3/17/13
7:00
AM ET
Can this road trip get any worse for the Knicks?

We'll find out sometime later this afternoon.

The banged-up 'Bockers will take on the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday afternoon -- the latest challenge in what has been a brutal west-coast swing.

Tip off is at 3:30 p.m. on ABC. Here are a few things to keep an eye on:

STAR STUCK? The Knicks prepared on Saturday as if they would be without both Carmelo Anthony and Tyson Chandler.

Both players are dealing with knee ailments. Anthony practiced on a limited basis Saturday, two days after getting fluid drained from his right knee.

Chandler did not practice. He missed Thursday's game against the Blazers with a left knee contusion. Without Chandler and Anthony, the Knicks lost to Portland. It was their third straight loss to start the five-game west coast road trip.

If Anthony and Chandler don't play on Sunday, look for Mike Woodson to start Chris Copeland, Kenyon Martin and Kurt Thomas on the front line.

D-FENSE? If Chandler can't go, the Knicks will miss an awful lot on defense.

With Chandler, the Knicks outscore opponents by five points per 100 possessions. Without Chandler, they get outscored by 1.5 points.

New York also struggles on the boards when Chandler's out.

With their big man on the bench, the Knicks rebound 46.1 percent of missed shots. When Chandler's out there, the Knicks grab 51.1 percent of rebound opportunities.

Those stops and rebounds will be a precious commodity against a Clippers team that averages 107 points per 100 possessions, approximately the same as New York.

SIXTH SENSE: A fun wrinkle to this game is the battle between each team's sixth man. The Clippers' Jamal Crawford (16.9 points per game) and the Knicks' J.R. Smith (16.7) are neck-and-neck in the race for the NBA's top scoring reserve.

Smith has been carrying the Knicks in Anthony's absence. He had 33 points in New York's loss to Portland on Thursday.

Crawford, on the other hand, is coming off of a 1-for-10 night on Friday after missing two games with an ankle ailment.

Though it should be noted that Crawford torched the Knicks for 27 points in the Clips' win at MSG in early February.


You can follow Ian Begley on Twitter.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?

TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Carmelo Anthony
PTS AST STL MIN
27.4 3.1 1.2 38.7
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsT. Chandler 9.6
AssistsR. Felton 5.6
StealsI. Shumpert 1.2
BlocksA. Bargnani 1.2

NEW YORK CALENDAR