The New York Knicks have lost 16 of their last 18 games as they prepare to host the Washington Wizards at Madison Square Garden on Sunday. New York, which will finish with the worst record in basketball, is coming off consecutive setbacks against Orlando and Houston. The Wizards have dropped eight of their last 10 after recently falling to Chicago and San Antonio.
The Wizards carry a 10-30 record away from home into their road finale on Sunday. They have lost eight of their last 10 overall following Friday’s 129-112 home setback against San Antonio. Washington doesn’t have much to play for other than development for next season, but it can avoid a 50-loss campaign if it wins one of the remaining two games.
“I haven’t even thought about that,” head coach Scott Brooks said of the 50-loss situation following Friday’s loss, during which his team fell behind by 19 points after one half. “The first time I thought about that was now.”
Second-year center Thomas Bryant is one of the key pieces moving forward and is averaging 17.6 points and 12.8 rebounds over his last five games.
The Knicks are on the verge of stumbling to the worst record in their long franchise history, a fate they can try to avoid with a strong finish over the final three games. Following a 24-point loss at Houston on Friday, the Knicks find themselves at 15-64, one loss from matching the total of the 2014-15 team that finished 17-65–with games at Chicago and against Detroit at home over the final two days of the regular season.
“This team works harder; this team has fought the whole year,” said veteran forward Lance Thomas, who was also on that 17-65 squad. “The results may not show exactly how hard we’ve been working but we’ve been working.”
Point guard Emmanuel Mudiay (shoulder) sat out Friday’s setback and forward Mario Hezonja was given a chance to man the point, finishing with 16 points, a career-high 16 rebounds, and a career-high 11 assists for his first career triple-double.
“He did a great job, he organized us, he called the right stuff, he attacked when he needed to attack and did an excellent job on the glass,” head coach David Fizdale said of Hezonja.
The New York Knicks are:
- 17-38 ATS in their last 55 overall
- 19-41 ATS in their last 60 home games
- 1-4 ATS in their last five games against the Eastern Conference
The Washington Wizards are:
- 4-1 ATS in their last five Sunday games
- 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games against New York
- 8-1 ATS in their last nine road games against New York