The struggling New York Knicks denied the Dallas Mavericks a season's best 14th consecutive victory with a lopsided 128-94 upset on Saturday night. The victory was the Knicks' first over the Mavericks in more than four years and their first in Dallas since December of 1999. The Knicks also gained a measure of revenge after suffering their worst ever defeat, 128-78, at the hands of the Mavericks at Madison Square Garden on January 24.
"Revenge is sweet sometimes. That's a really good team over there but we caught them at the right time. They were ripe for the picking," said Al Harrington, the New York reserve who had 20 points. "When you're rolling along and the Knicks are coming in, you figure you can score 150 points on them in your sleep. "But that Knick team didn't show up today. We caught 'em by surprise." "They remembered [the blowout in New York]," said Dallas's Shawn Marion, who scored 14 points. "They even said something to me about it before the game. They said they were going to give us a spanking."
New York's Bill Walker scored a season-high 23 points off the bench, including 16 points in the fourth quarter, while Dirk Nowitzki led the Mavericks with 20 points. The visitors built a 10-point lead in the first half before streaking ahead with a 21-6 run in the third quarter. They led 91-66 heading into the fourth quarter and stretched their lead to 37 points at one point, with Walker scoring 16 of his points in the last 12 minutes.
"We felt they'd take us lightly," said Toney Douglas, the Knicks rookie who was making his first start since November 18. "A lot of teams look at the schedule and say, 'Oh, that's the Knicks. That's a win.' But we've got to come out and compete every night." Dallas did not seem to be unduly concerned over the surprise loss. "You especially don't want it to come to an end like this, but at the same time it was a great run," Marion said. Now it's time to start another one. I think we've just got to learn from it. It seemed like everything we did out there wouldn't go right tonight."