Wednesday , Feb , 22 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Heat, Knicks clash at MSG

(Sports Network) – The Miami Heat try for their fourth straight win this
evening when they open up the second half of their season against the lowly
New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden.

Last Wednesday, Dwyane Wade netted 36 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished
out nine assists as Miami dominated the Orlando Magic for the second night in
a row, with a 110-100 victory in the back end of a home-and-home series at the
TD Waterhouse Centre.

Shaquille O’Neal had only seven points before fouling out, but had 11 rebounds
for the Heat, who have won eight of the last 10 overall. Antoine Walker added
26 points on 10-of-17 shooting from the floor and hit six three-pointers.

After opening the season 10-10, Miami has gained a comfortable lead in the
Southeast Division with wins in 23 of their last 33 games. The Heat hold a 5
1/2 edge on the Washington Wizards in the division.

Miami, which will return home for two games after tonight’s contest, is 14-14
away from home this season.

New York, meanwhile, enters tonight’s tilt on a rare winning note after Jamal
Crawford hit a pull-up jumper with three seconds left to help the Knicks end
their 10-game losing streak with a 98-96 win over the Toronto Raptors in their
final game before the All-Star break on Wednesday.

Crawford, who could be dealt by tomorrow’s trade deadline, ended with 14
points and Eddy Curry had 18 points, five rebounds and four blocks for the
Knicks, who picked up their first win since downing Orlando 97-94 on January
27.

New York’s Jalen Rose had 17 points in his first game against his former team,
as the Knicks won for just the second time in 18 games.

The Knicks could get a boost tonight with the possible return of star Stephon
Marbury, who has missed the last eight games with a shoulder injury. Marbury,
who missed 11 of the last 16 with the injury, is not fully recovered but
should be ready to go tonight.

New York, which will close a three-game homestand versus the New Jersey Nets
on Friday, is 11-15 in its arena this season.

Miami defeated the Knicks earlier in the season and has won five straight and
six of the last seven meetings. The Heat have also had success in the Big
Apple, where they have won three straight and five of their last seven.

NYK MIA