There are now only eight games left in the regular season for the New York Knicks after surviving a pivotal three-game stretch with two against the Bulls and one against the Bucks. Thanks to the win in Milwaukee last night, the Knicks move two games up over the Bucks for the last spot in the playoffs, which would set up for a round one matchup with the conference-leading Bulls -- ironically enough, the Knicks’ only loss of the three games was against a Chicago team that was missing their star player, Derrick Rose. Hopefully the two-game cushion over the Bucks will be enough down the stretch as both teams only have three games left against playoff-caliber teams, so essentially, if the Knicks just win the games they should win, it should be smooth sailing to the postseason.
So what have we learned from the last three games about this team? The Knicks showed a lot of grit and heart when their backs were pushed up against the wall. Besides blowing a huge lead on Sunday and failing to show up for the second quarter on Tuesday, the Knicks have been playing great basketball. The defensive intensity has grown ever since Mike Woodson took over this team, and I guess it helps to have Amare Stoudemire and Jeremy Lin on the bench when it comes to defense. But on the other side, the Knicks are missing the pair's offensive abilities, which has forced Carmelo Anthony to carry even more of the load.