Brandon Jennings had 25 points and Mike Dunleavy came off the bench to add 25 more for the Bucks (16-24) last night at Bradley Center in Milwaukee.
“Ersan saved the day again,” Jennings told reporters.
Amar’e Stoudemire had a game-high 27 points and 11 rebounds, while Carmelo Anthony scored 22 points and Jeremy Lin tallied 20 points and 13 assists for the Knicks (18-22).
“They hit some tough shots,” Lin told reporters. “We didn’t get all the rebounds we should have gotten. Tonight wasn’t a lack of energy, it wasn’t a lack of heart or will. They just came out with this win.”
The Knicks, who had a 65-61 halftime advantage, fell behind in the third quarter as they were held scoreless in the final three minutes while Milwaukee built a 93-83 lead.
In the final quarter, Anthony’s layup with 52 seconds left narrowed the Knicks’ deficit to 114-113. Ilyasova came back with a basket and free throw, and Jennings connected on two foul shots to put the game out of New York’s reach.
The Knicks are third in the Eastern Conference’s five-team Atlantic Division, 5 ½ games behind the Philadelphia 76ers. The Bucks, third in the five-team Central Division, are 16 games behind the Chicago Bulls. In the conference standings, the Knicks are in the eighth and final place for the playoff cutoff, while the Bucks hold the ninth spot.
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