– By Mike Pendleton, Staff Writer
The best game of the NBA season was between two teams, one city, one love. The New York Knicks took the road trip to Brooklyn for the first of what is sure to be many great matchups against the Nets. The most anticipated in-state matchup the NBA even brought Nets’ minority owner Jay-Z and wife Beyonce out to the game.
The chants in Brooklyn were heard loud and early, but even chants of MVP for Carmelo Anthony were heard outpouring.
The battle between stars Anthony and Brooklyn point guard Deron Williams was the main position battle, but it was Tyson Chandler for the Knicks and Brook Lopez for the Nets who contributed the most.
Chandler posted a career high 28 points, with 10 rebounds as Brook
Lopez had 22 points, 11 rebounds and 5 blocks. The big men played second fiddle on the headlines, but most important when the game mattered most. It was Tyson’s effort and put-back slams that got the Brooklyn crowd chanting “New York! New York! New York!” While Brook Lopez was catching passes from Deron Williams (14 assists), he was also rejecting shots letting the New Yorkers know Brooklyn does it better.
The atmosphere was great all game. It’s almost a mistake made by the NBA that this couldn’t be an NBA Finals matchup. There was nothing short of excitement at the brand new Barclays Center. The Nets were more physical, more determined to get rebounds and simply came to play. It seemed as if the Knicks were held back by Carmelo’s constant calling for the ball, and Raymond Felton’s shooting woes (3-19) as they proved to be a very selfish team.
Although it took overtime for Brooklyn to come out on top, they came out in a very convincing fashion. Their stars are shining brighter than New York’s, and since then it’s been the “I told you so!” between fans. Joe Johnson is still struggling to find his shot for this team, and Kris Humphries only had 4 points and 5 rebounds meaning this team is not playing to their full potential.
The next matchup between these two teams happens Dec.11. If the energy level stays the same, advantage Brooklyn. Although Jason Kidd missed this game due to back spasms, one could question just how much he means to this team. Before any game-planning comes into the game, Carmelo must make his mindset known to this team. Whether he’s going to be the main scorer and play limited defense, then the team must rally behind him as a defensive unit.
Until the Knicks find their true character and mindset, Brooklyn seems to be ready, ready to let Deron Williams run the team, the franchise and the city of Brooklyn. The Nets will go as far as Williams takes them and quite frankly, that’s the best way it could be. If he posts another double-double in points and assists next game, Brooklyn will be in great position to win. Speaking of Brook, if Brook is in tune, then the Knicks may not stand a chance.