A pair of teams coming off impressive road wins meet Monday in Madison Square Garden as the New York Knicks host the Denver Nuggets. The Knicks authored one of the more stunning results on the young season with a 114-95 victory at Cleveland on Sunday, their second victory in a row following an 0-3 start.
Tim Hardaway Jr. emerged from an early slump with a season-high 34 points while handing out eight assists to help New York defeat the Cavaliers for the first time in the last 11 tries. The Nuggets are enjoying a similar turnaround with back-to-back wins following a 1-3 start, and they’ll be waiting in New York for the Knicks to return after topping the Brooklyn Nets 124-111 on Sunday. Jamal Murray scored 26 points to lead a starting five that shot 51.5 percent from the floor, 50 percent from 3-point range and 15-of-16 from the free-throw line. Denver has won five meetings in a row with New York and averaged 129 points in sweeping two encounters last season.
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, Altitude (Denver), MSG (New York)
ABOUT THE NUGGETS (3-3): Nikola Jokic has bounced back from a scoreless 30-minute effort against Sacramento on Oct. 21 with four straight solid games, including three consecutive double-doubles. He finished Sunday’s win with 21 points and 14 rebounds and has shot 50 percent or better in each of the four affairs. Emmanuel Mudiay, Murray’s backup, needed just 19 minutes of action to produce 15 points and five assists.
ABOUT THE KNICKS (2-3): Forward Kristaps Porzingis has scored at least 30 points in four of the first five games as he asserts himself as the clear go-to guy with Carmelo Anthony no longer around. The 7-3 Latvian had 32 points and 12 rebounds in the win over Cleveland and fellow big man Enes Kanter also had a double-double with 18 points and 12 boards. New York’s turnaround has coincided with the return from an ankle injury of rookie guard Frank Ntilikina, who has chipped in with averages of seven points and four assists off the bench in the two-game run.
1. Knicks PG Jarrett Jack handed out nine assists Sunday and has 14 against three turnovers over the last two games.
2. Denver SF Wilson Chandler finished with 18 points Sunday for his first double-digit scoring effort this season.
3. Nuggets PF Juan Hernangomez (mono) has missed three straight games.
PREDICTION: Nuggets 111, Knicks 106