(Late) Morning Shootaround: Missing 2013

Anthony, Knicks fall short
Nuggets 97, Knicks 95

The Knicks had little to be thankful for early on this season. The team sat at 3-11 entering the holiday without Tyson Chandler and with more questions than answers. This was a team that expected to compete for an Eastern Conference title after finishing second in the East last year.

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Instead this is a team sitting at the bottom of the standings and struggling to figure itself out.

Carmelo Anthony is playing fine. He is scoring like he always does. But not doing much else to help his team. The weight is falling squarely on his shoulders too.

And recently he said it has not been fun for the Knicks right now. That is sure to get the New York fans feeling nervous about his upcoming free agency.

The holiday break did not provide any relief for the Knicks. New York got close but Carmelo Anthony missed a jumper as time expired and Denver held on 97-95

Anthony scored 27 points and seven rebounds, making only 7 of 22 shots, to lead the Knicks. New York needed more although it got 22 from Andrea Bargnani on 11 field goal attempts. The Nuggets kept up their balance, surviving a poor shooting night from the floor against the sieve of a defense known as the Knicks. Ty Lawson led the way with 22 points.

Heat keep sizzling
Heat 90, Raptors 83

Miami had some fun during the Thanksgivign holiday with LeBron James taking photos of his teammates sleeping after a team Thanksgiving dinner. Friday night it was back to business for the Heat. James scored 27 points to lead Miami over Toronto for Miami's ninth straight win. The Raptors got 25 points from DeMar DeRozan but shot worse than 40 percent against the Heat's defense.

Russell Westbrook gets his second chance
Thunder 113, Warriors 112, OT

Rarely are you going to get a second chance to make good on a missed opportunity. Russell Westbrook hit what he thought was a game-winning shot the last time the Thunder and Warriors played before Andre Iguodala stabbed him in the heart. Not this time. Thabo Sefolosha saved the ball from going out of bounds and Westbrook caught it, found the 3-point line and drained the jumper with 0.1 left to deliver Oklahoma City the win. Westbrook scored 34 points to go with seven assists when all was said and done.

Lakers finish comeback in Detroit
Lakers 106, Pistons 102

Wesley Johnson helped the Lakers complete a major comeback and held on for a four-point victory over the Pistons on the road. Wesley Johnson had a breakout game with 27 points on 9-for-11 shooting as the Lakers climbed above .500 on the year. Shawne Williams was also a surprise scoring 20 points off the bench. Rodney Stuckey had 22 points off the bench for the Pistons. Brandon Jennings and Greg Monroe each had 19 points.

Rockets cruise past Nets
Rockets 114, Nets 95

The final score to this game was much closer than it would have indicated. On the night where Jason Kidd admitted he purposefully spilled his beverage on the floor to buy time and get a free timeout, the Nets laid an egg. It woudl take more than one beverage to get this thing fixed. The Rockets shot 52.7 percent and made 19 of 32 3-pointers to get the easy win at home. Chandler Parsons made all six 3-pointers to score 21 points to lead the Rockets to the victory.

Bucks drop 11th straight
Bobcats 92, Bucks 76

The worst team in the awful Eastern Conference is the lowly Milwaukee Bucks. And the Bobcats sent them to more indignity and suffering. Charlotte got 23 points and 12 rebounds from Al Jefferson and 19 points from Gerald Henderson, who had the scariest moment of the game when he accidentally hit a fan with an errant pass. Hey, at least Milwaukee gets its new court at the BMO Harris Bradley Center soon, right?

Holiday's happy homecoming
Pelicans 121, 76ers 105

The Pelicans' Jrue Holiday was an All Star in Philadelphia before the 76ers traded him to begin their rebuilding process. Holiday reminded Philadelphia why he is so good. Holiday scored 20 points to go with 13 assists in this high-scoring game to lead the Pelicans to the win. Holiday got help from Eric Gordon, who scored 26 points on 11-for-16 shooting and was a fabulous +20 on the game. New Orleans' starting lineup was absolutely superb in this game.

Bledsoe returns for Suns
Suns 112, Jazz 101 

Eric Bledsoe made his return to the Suns lineup after a six-game absense and the Suns celebrated with a win over the woeful Jazz in the front end of the home and home. Bledsoe scored 19 points off the bench in his return, showing no ill effects of the shin bruise that knocked him out for so long. Markieff Morris had 23 points off the bench as well and Goran Dragic added 19 points and nine assists in the win.

Pacers still rolling
Pacers 93, Wizards 73 

The Pacers are not slowing down any time soon. It does not matter who is in their path at this point. Indiana made quick work of Washington with a 20-point win. Paul George scored 23 points and the Wizards shot 40.3 percent from the floor as the Pacers controlled and dominated the game. Marcin Gortat scored 17 points and 10 rebounds to lead the way.

Kings hang tough with L.A.
Clippers 104, Kings 98, OT

The Kings hung tough with the Clippers, which is a good sign for a young team. This is turning into a budding rivalry though with the way they shun and ignore each other. J.J. Redick took a hard hit and tried to give DeMarcus Cousins a "no-hard-feelings" fist bump. Cousins ignored him. That slight was not forgotten as the Clippers dominated the game in overtime. Jordan Crawford had 31 points and 11 assists with Chris Paul out with injury.

Spurs too much for Magic
Spurs 109, Magic 91

Tim Duncan had a rare alley oop. It might have been a quasi-dunk, but it was the kind of domination that the Spurs featured all game against the young Magic. A 17-0 run midway through the second quarter put the game away and the Spurs coasted to a victory. Duncan and Marco Belinelli scored 19 points as the Spurs frustrated the Magic defensively all night.

Horford delivers for Hawks
Hawks 82, Mavericks 81

Al Horford scored a tip-in to give the Hawks a one-point win over the Mavericks in an ugly game that wreaked of tryptophan. The Hawks had to rally in the fourth quarter to put themselves in position to win, causing Shawn Marion to lament post game that this was a game the Mavericks should have won. Jeff Teague scored 25 points and Horford had 17 points and 12 rebounds. Marion led the Mavericks with 15 points and 12 rebounds.

Celtics roll Cavs
Celtics 103, Cavaliers 86

The Cavaliers are getting into desperation mode right about now. Cleveland fans are seeing the end and a blowout to the Celtics is not helping matters at all. Nowhere near at all. Boston led after one quarter 28-10 an had a 15-point advantage in the third quarter. Jordan Crawford turned in a triple double and Jeff Green scored 31 points for Boston in the rout.

Philip Rossman-Reich

About Philip Rossman-Reich

Philip Rossman-Reich is the managing editor for Crossover Chronicles and Orlando Magic Daily. You can follow him on twitter @OMagicDaily