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Vitals: Kincks at Thunder

Vitals: Knicks at Thunder Vitals: Knicks at Thunder

Originally Published: Jan 11, 2010 12:52 PM CDT

Dave Carty
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer

New York Knicks (15-21) at Oklahoma City Thunder (20-16)
Monday, January 11, 2010, 7:00 p.m. CST.
Ford Center, Oklahoma City
Game 37 of 82

Anticipated Starting Lineups

New York (Away)
Oklahoma City (Home)
Chris Duhon
9.5 PPG, 6.4 APG
Russell Westbrook
16.2 PPG, 7.3 APG
Wilson Chandler
15.0 PPG, 5.6 RPG
Thabo Sefolosha
6.1 PPG, 1.2 Stl
Danilo Gallinari
14.5 PPG, 2.8 3P
Kevin Durant
28.7 PPG, 7.0 RPG
Jared Jeffries
4.1 PPG, 1.2 Blk
Jeff Green
14.2 PPG, 5.8 RPG
CDavid Lee
19.1 PPG, 10.9 RPG
Nenad Krstic
8.4 PPG, 5.0 RPG

New York: F, Al Harrington (calf, questionable).
Oklahoma City: G/F, Kyle Weaver (shoulder, out); G, Kevin Ollie (knee, day-to-day).

Where to find it?
On TV: Fox Sports Oklahoma
On Radio: Thunder Radio Network

What you need to know?
The Knicks are in the middle of a slow – ok, a very slow – climb back to competing in the Eastern Conference. Some of the pieces are in place and Mike D’Antoni might have the ship steered in the right direction. Nevertheless, the Knicks remain in that all-too-comfortable sub-.500 hole. It’s been a mixed bag of late for the Knicks, who embarked on a three-game winning streak until Houston snapped it last Saturday. Just prior to the streak, they handed lowly cross-town rival New Jersey its second win of the season. Now, that is embarrassing.

Outside of a pair of recent losses to the Milwaukee Bucks and New Orleans Hornets, the Thunder has been playing good basketball. Head coach Scott Brooks has experimented with a couple different combinations in recent games to try to get the best results – including putting Jeff Green at the center spot for part of the game against the Hornets. As the team stands, it would finish in the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. Every win in the tight race will be crucial.

Who to watch?
In December, Nate Robinson was banished from D’Antoni’s rotation for 14 games. Since coming back, he’s had mixed results. In his very first game back on January 1 against the Atlanta Hawks, he scored 41 points off the bench. Saturday, against the Rockets, he scored 20 points in about 28 minutes of play. The 5’9” dunker is exactly the kind of player that dares you to take him lightly, then makes you pay for it.

We should probably consider changing this section of our Vitals to “Who to watch BESIDES Kevin Durant.” KD posted his eighth double-double of the season last time out against the Indiana Pacers and tied a season-high with 40 points, 13 of which came in the fourth quarter.
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