The Italian Job: Amar’e and Gallinari lead Knicks to win

By: 10.04.10  •  37 Comments

Amar'e Stoudemire (photo. King Lawrence)

To somebody who knew nothing of the NBA and just happened to catch yesterday’s preseason opener, they would’ve thought the New York Knicks are really named the New-Look Knicks. As Amar’e Stoudemire and crew struggled to put some distance between themselves and Armani Jeans Milano in Italy, NY announcers Mike Breen and Clyde Frazier made sure to note about 150 times that this Knicks team is still getting used to each other. Valid excuse on paper for why you committed 27 turnovers, but let’s be real: The best players on Milano were “Buckets” Pecherov — whom Breen admitted “wouldn’t play a lot” on an NBA team — and former Temple star David Hawkins, whose game is a cross between “Baby Shack” and “Helicopter” from the defunct AND 1 tour … It was a single-digit game until the Knicks finally put it together and started to blow AJ Milano out in the second half, highlighted by an off-the-glass ‘oop from Toney Douglas to Anthony Randolph that stretched the lead to 20 midway through the fourth … BREAKING NEWS: Amar’e (32 pts) isn’t going to stink without Steve Nash feeding him the ball. Shocking, we know. Of course you have to take the level of competition into account, but Amar’e complemented his usual power dunks with a nice off-the-dribble game, soft touch around the basket, and court vision. After one of his dunks, Frazier said, “The crowd is still AROUSED after that dunk.” … Gallinari (24 pts) got the rock-star treatment, posing with Giorgio Armani before tip-off and getting a huge ovation from the crowd. Gallo was given the green light by Mike D’Antoni (a celebrity in his own right in Milan) and it seemed like every time you looked up he was jacking a three … Breen asked Frazier if he’d ever been to Paris. “Only in books and movies,” Clyde said. Apparently the tons of French girls he’s been with doesn’t count, either … While Breen was giving the Knicks’ players leeway for their mistakes, he didn’t give the front office any breaks. Breen said this is the first Knicks team in a while “that was put together to be a team, not to collect expiring contracts.” … The Nets didn’t have any trouble with Maccabi Haifa (Israel), leading by 10 at the end of the first quarter and coming two points shy of a 40-piecing. Anthony Morrow (14 pts, 4 threes, 4 stls) and Derrick Favors (14 pts, 9 rebs) led a balanced offense, while Kris Humphries, starting in place of Troy Murphy (groin), pulled down 12 rebounds. Sylven Landesberg led Maccabi with 24 points … Just when you thought Carmelo Anthony wasn’t getting traded, ‘Melo threw some more uncertainty and speculation onto the pile. Asked by reporters if he’d be with the Nuggets come opening night, ‘Melo said, “I don’t know, man. I don’t know. I’m taking it day by day. It’s possible that I will be here opening night.” Asked to clarify, he said, “Possible means 50-50.” If you just want to play ball and not be bothered with trade talk, why even give a vague answer like that? … Good and bad news Bulls: Joakim Noah has agreed to a 5-year, $60 million contract extension, but Carlos Boozer broke his hand and could be sidelined until December. Booz will miss Chicago’s national-TV games against Oklahoma City, New York, Boston, San Antonio and Dallas, plus a crucial 2-week, 7-game West Coast road trip that covers the latter half of November … According to Indiana Pacers beat writer Mike Wells, the team’s starting PF job “is Josh McRoberts‘ to lose.” According to us, about 50 games are Indiana’s to lose … We’re out like Booz …

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