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Knicks hope to stay hot against Suns

(SportsNetwork.com) - The New York Knicks have yet to defeat a Western Conference opponent at home this season and will try to alter the results Monday versus the Phoenix Suns at Madison Square Garden.

The Knicks are 0-6 against the West as the host and previously defeated a team from that conference last March 27 versus Memphis. They are 6-12 overall at Madison Square Garden, where they have won back-to-back games.

New York has won a season-high four in a row overall and is coming off Saturday's 102-92 road defeat of the Philadelphia 76ers. Playing in the 700th game of his career, Amare Stoudemire scored a game-best 21 points off the bench and Carmelo Anthony netted 18 with nine rebounds and seven assists. He is second in the NBA with 26.1 points per game.

J.R. Smith, who was benched the previous game versus Miami, came off the pine to score 14 points for the Knicks, who are 5-1 in the new year and last ripped off five straight wins during a 13-game run from March 18 - April 9, 2013.

The Knicks outscored the Sixers, 64-40, in the second and third quarters.

"I just wanted to be aggressive, attack, get back to my old self, play with a chip on my shoulder and it worked," Smith said. "It was very important for me as well as the team to get out there and be successful with scoring the ball and getting my teammates open shots."

Iman Shumpert had just seven points, but is averaging 15.8 ppg in his past five contests. Tyson Chandler missed his third straight game Saturday due to an upper respiratory illness and is questionable Monday.

After the Knicks host the Suns, they will play two straight on the road at Charlotte and Indiana before returning to MSG for an eight-game homestand.

Phoenix will put the finishing touches on a five-game road trip and is 1-3 on the trek so far. The Suns are 2-4 in January and dropped a 110-108 decision at Detroit on Saturday, as Pistons forward Josh Smith banked in the game-winning basket with 1.2 seconds left.

Gerald Green of the Suns was fouled by Smith on a 3-point attempt and made all three of his foul shots, but Smith answered on the other end. Green's desperation shot at the end was off the mark.

"The last time I had the opportunity in New York, I settled for a jump shot. I wanted to be aggressive. I learned from that play that I made. I wanted to put the onus on the officials and I was able to get a good look at it," Smith said.

Channing Frye scored a team-high 21 points and P.J. Tucker and Marcus Morris scored 17 points apiece for Phoenix, which is 9-10 on the road and erased an 18-point deficit in the closing minutes. Tucker also grabbed 11 rebounds, while Green and Goran Dragic scored 15 points apiece.

"If you just turn it on for 24 minutes you're not going to win a lot games. That is something we are going to have to correct," said Suns coach Jeff Hornacek.

Dragic is averaging 22.4 points in his last seven games and Frye is posting an average of 16.0 points over that stretch. The Suns fell to 18-5 when scoring 100 or more points and will start a five-game homestand Wednesday versus the Los Angeles Lakers.

Phoenix lost both meetings with New York a season ago and is just 6-10 in the past 16 encounters at Madison Square Garden.

01/13 10:16:12 ET

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Standings

2013 - 2014 Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Toronto 48 34 .585 --- 26-15 22-19 32-20 L 1
x-Brooklyn 44 38 .537 4 28-13 16-25 26-26 L 2
New York 37 45 .451 11 19-22 18-23 26-26 W 4
Boston 25 57 .305 23 16-25 9-32 21-31 L 2
Philadelphia 19 63 .232 29 10-31 9-32 14-38 W 2
 
Central W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Indiana 56 26 .683 --- 35-6 21-20 38-14 W 2
x-Chicago 48 34 .585 8 27-14 21-20 35-17 L 1
Cleveland 33 49 .402 23 19-22 14-27 21-31 W 1
Detroit 29 53 .354 27 17-24 12-29 23-29 L 4
Milwaukee 15 67 .183 41 10-31 5-36 12-40 L 3
 
Southeast W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Miami 54 28 .659 --- 32-9 22-19 34-18 L 3
x-Washington 44 38 .537 10 22-19 22-19 33-19 W 4
x-Charlotte 43 39 .524 11 25-16 18-23 30-22 W 3
x-Atlanta 38 44 .463 16 24-17 14-27 28-24 W 1
Orlando 23 59 .280 31 19-22 4-37 17-35 L 4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
2013 - 2014 Western Conference Standings
 
Northwest W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-Oklahoma City 59 23 .720 --- 34-7 25-16 36-16 W 1
x-Portland 54 28 .659 5 31-10 23-18 31-21 W 5
Minnesota 40 42 .488 19 24-17 16-25 23-29 L 3
Denver 36 46 .439 23 22-19 14-27 20-32 L 2
Utah 25 57 .305 34 16-25 9-32 13-39 W 1
 
Pacific W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-LA Clippers 57 25 .695 --- 34-7 23-18 36-16 L 1
x-Golden State 51 31 .622 6 27-14 24-17 31-21 W 2
Phoenix 48 34 .585 9 26-15 22-19 28-24 W 1
Sacramento 28 54 .341 29 17-24 11-30 15-37 L 1
LA Lakers 27 55 .329 30 14-27 13-28 15-37 W 2
 
Southwest W L PCT GB Home Away Conf Streak
y-San Antonio 62 20 .756 --- 32-9 30-11 38-14 L 2
x-Houston 54 28 .659 8 33-8 21-20 31-21 L 1
x-Memphis 50 32 .610 12 27-14 23-18 29-23 W 5
x-Dallas 49 33 .598 13 26-15 23-18 29-23 L 1
New Orleans 34 48 .415 28 22-19 12-29 15-37 W 2
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 0
DUR 3
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR
DUR
 
Final
CHC 1
CIN 4
Final
PIT 3
MIL 5
Final
WAS 3
STL 1
Final
CLE 2
TOR 3
Final
DET 6
ANA 11
Final
NYM 0
ATL 6
Final
BOS 4
BAL 8
Final
TAM 11
NYY 5
Final
MIA 8
SEA 4
Final
TEX 12
CWS 0
Final
KAN 5
MIN 0
Final
COL 12
PHI 1
Final
OAK 11
HOU 3
Final
LOS 2
ARI 4
Final
SDP 2
SFG 1
1:05pm Today
WAS
STL
 
1:05pm Today
CLE
TOR
 
1:08pm Today
DET
ANA
 
1:35pm Today
BOS
BAL
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
MIN
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
CIN
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
HOU
 
7:05pm Tonight
PIT
MIL
 
7:10pm Tonight
NYM
ATL
 
7:10pm Tonight
TAM
NYY
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIA
SEA
 
8:05pm Tonight
TEX
CWS
 
8:10pm Tonight
LOS
ARI
 
8:10pm Tonight
COL
PHI
 
8:40pm Tonight
SDP
SFG
 
12:30pm Today
TOR
BRK
3:30pm Today
LAC
GSW
7:00pm Tonight
IND
ATL
9:30pm Tonight
OKC
MEM
Final
TAM 1
MON 4
Final
BOS 0
DET 1
Final
ANA 3
DAL 2
3:00pm Today
STL
CHI
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
CLB
9:30pm Tonight
COL
MIN
Final
NOR 0
DUR 3
 
7:05pm Tonight
NOR
DUR