NEW YORK (AP) — Carmelo Anthony scored 18 of his 31 points in the third quarter and the New York Knicks beat the Los Angeles Lakers 92-80 Sunday.
With Kobe Bryant out for the season and both teams among the worst in the NBA, it was anything but a Super Sunday in New York, where the national TV audience that was originally scheduled to see it missed the Lakers shooting 35.5 percent from the field.READ MORE: COVID-19 Cases Continue To Rise In LA County
Anthony stood out above the ugliness, soaring to dunk an alley-oop pass in the second quarter before turning mostly to his jumper in the third to help New York pull away. He shot 13 of 25 and grabbed eight rebounds.
Langston Galloway added 13 points for the Knicks, who have won five of seven and did it easily, building their first 20-point lead since they were up 21 in a victory over Philadelphia on Nov. 22.
Carlos Boozer had 19 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who lost for the 10th time in 11 games. Jordan Clarkson also scored 19 points.
The Lakers had snapped their nine-game losing streak with a double-overtime victory over Chicago on Thursday but they remain lost on the road, where they fell for the seventh straight time.
The Knicks are 10-38, slightly worse than the Lakers’ 13-35 mark. Missing half its star power with Bryant sidelined after shoulder surgery, the game was yanked from ESPN — the Knicks’ fourth consecutive game that was dropped from the NBA’s national TV schedule.
It was Derek Fisher’s first time coaching against the team he helped win five championships, and now Phil Jackson, the coach of those teams, will have to figure out how to build the Knicks into contenders. Fisher said that doesn’t require landing another star like the Lakers did when they got Shaquille O’Neal or Pau Gasol, but acknowledged they may not be able to build gradually as teams such as Oklahoma City and Portland have.READ MORE: Multiple Residents Report Bear Sighting In Simi Valley Neighborhood
“I think you owe it to Carmelo to do it the right way, but at the same time he just signed a contract for five years,” Fisher said. “He’s 30 years old. We don’t have 10 years to figure this out.”
The Knicks led 32-19 after one, but then shot just 31 percent in the second as the Lakers pulled within 47-39. Anthony then scored 12 straight Knicks points in the third as they went ahead by 19, and pushed it to 21 early in the fourth.
Lakers: Coach Byron Scott said before the game that Nick Young (sprained right ankle) was available but held him out because he hadn’t seen the swingman show he could run and cut. … Starting forward Jordan Hill strained right quad in the first quarter and didn’t return.
Knicks: The Knicks recalled rookie Cleanthony Early from Westchester of the NBA Development League before the game. He averaged 18.5 points and 11.0 rebounds in two games during his assignment. He didn’t play Sunday. … The Knicks’ games on Jan. 24 against Charlotte (NBA TV), Wednesday against Oklahoma City (ESPN) and Thursday against Indiana (TNT) had also been taken off national TV.
Lakers: Visit Milwaukee on Wednesday.MORE NEWS: Local Firefighters Begin 9/11 Memorial Ride Cross-Country
Knicks: Host Boston on Tuesday.