NBA Basketball: Golden State Warriors at New York Knicks - Knicks Favored
Both teams will try to bounce back from tough losses when they wrap up their season series Friday night at Madison Square Garden.
Golden State (26-33) is currently 11th in the Western Conference and still within reach of a playoff spot. New York (26-33) is 10th in the Eastern Conference, 2 1/2 games behind New Jersey for the eighth and final playoff spot.
The Warriors have won four straight over the Knicks (26-33) and eight of the last nine meetings between the two teams. However, Golden State will try to avoid a season-high fifth straight loss overall Friday.
Playing without starting guard Baron Davis, who averages 20.7 points and is recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery, and forward Stephen Jackson - out with a broken toe - Golden State lost 113-83 to the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday in the second of a five-game road trip.
Golden State has lost five straight and 12 of 14 games on the road, where it is 6-23 on the season. Only Memphis at 4-25 has a worse road record.
"I definitely feel responsible for this," Warriors coach Don Nelson said. "I thought I could get this team to the playoffs, but it doesn't look like it's going to happen. I feel that I failed in a lot of ways, really."
Jackson, who averages 15.3 points, is questionable for this game.
Golden State forward Kelenna Azubuike, recently recalled from the Developmental League, scored 23 points against the Bulls as the Warriors shot 40.2 percent, committed 24 turnovers and were outscored 33-11 in the third quarter.
"It's really tough when your best player on the floor like tonight is a D-League player. Azubuike played 40 minutes and left everything out there," said Nelson.
New York has alternated wins and loses in its last nine games, which included a 120-101 road loss to Golden State on Feb. 14.
The Knicks fell 102-94 to lowly Boston in their first game without guard Jamal Crawford, the team's second-leading scorer at 17.9 points who is likely out for the season with a stress fracture in his right ankle.
It is uncertain whether forward David Lee, and guards Steve Francis and Nate Robinson will return for New York on Friday. Lee, who averages 11.2 points and a team-leading 10.7 rebounds, has missed the last three with a sprained right ankle and muscle strain. Francis has missed four straight with right knee tendinitis and Robinson was out Wednesday with a stomach virus.
Quentin Richardson scored 24 points and Stephon Marbury had 23 on Wednesday as the Knicks rallied from a 23-point deficit to lead in the fourth quarter, but couldn't hold on down the stretch.
"We don't quit," Richardson said. "But it's not a good recipe. You can't do that in the NBA. It's too hard to come back against these teams, any team in the NBA, when you're down 20 points."
Marbury, who averages 14.7 points and shoots 41.4 percent from the field, continues to keep up his recent strong play. He's averaging 23.0 points and shooting 46.8 percent (29-for-62) in his last four games.
By: Marc Young - theSpread.com - Email Us
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