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Knicks beat Wizards for 10th straight time

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Knicks beat Wizards for 10th straight time

NEW YORK (AP) Carmelo Anthony and JR Smith each scored 20 points, and the New York Knicks beat the Washington Wizards for the 10th straight time, 108-87 on Friday night.

Tyson Chandler and Ronnie Brewer each added 12 points for the Knicks, who improved to 6-0 at home and also beat the Wizards for the ninth straight time at Madison Square Garden. Both winning streaks are their longest active against one team.

Chandler finished with 10 rebounds but his 5-of-8 shooting represented a cold night after the NBA's leading shooter had made 16 of 17 over his previous two games and came in shooting 71.8 percent for the season.

Raymond Felton scored 11 points for the Knicks, who shot 53 percent from the field in their third straight game without starting guard Jason Kidd, who remains out with lower back spasms.

Jordan Crawford scored 17 points and rookie Bradley Beal had 14 for the Wizards, who beat Portland 84-82 on Wednesday for their lone victory after a 0-12 start but were never in this game after the first 10 minutes.

The Knicks led by nine after one and kept increasing their lead, going ahead by double digits throughout the second half and by as much as 23.

The only time the home fans grew restless was at the half, during the filming of a scene for the upcoming Vince Vaughn film ``Delivery Man.'' After a hard foul, the actor playing the Knicks star had to shoot two free throws but couldn't make both, the boos growing louder with each miss until he had to be rattled.

The real Knicks had nothing to worry about.

Leading by one, the Knicks closed the first quarter with a 10-2 spurt for a 26-17 lead, holding Washington to 32 percent shooting. The Knicks then made 12 of 19 shots in the second, getting eight points from Pablo Prigioni and building a 13-point advantage before going into the locker room up 57-46 after Anthony rattled in a jumper at the buzzer.

Notes: The Wizards' last victory in New York was Dec. 6, 2006. ... Kidd did some shooting Friday morning and hopes to return next week, though coach Mike Woodson wasn't sure, saying the Knicks would have to just continue to wait. .. Chandler's ``Rebound 4 Rockaway'' campaign will team up with the NBA players' association on Saturday to deliver items to families affected by Superstorm Sandy in Far Rockaway, N.Y.

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4 reasons the Caps beat the Blue Jackets in Game 4

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USA TODAY Sports

4 reasons the Caps beat the Blue Jackets in Game 4

The Caps put together their best performance of the series Thursday in a 4-1 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets in Game 4 of their 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs first-round series.

he win pulled Washington even with Columbus in the series 2-2.

Here's how the Caps got the big win.

4 Reasons why the Capitals beat the Blue Jackets in Game 4

1. Tom Wilson factors in the offense

Wilson’s hands are good for more than just punching.

He proved that again on Thursday as he scored the first goal for the second consecutive game. Chandler Stephenson and John Carlson provided the pressure on Sergei Bobrovsky. With Bobrovsky scrambling in the crease, Evgeny Kuznetsov passed the puck back to Wilson who fired the one-timer past the Columbus netminder.

In the first two games of the series, Wilson had no points and no shots. In the last two games, he has two goals and 13 shots on goal.

2. A great keep-in by John Carlson

We saw how dangerous it was when penalty killers fail to clear the puck in Game 1 when the Caps failed to clear in the third period leading to the game-tying power play goal.

In Game 4, the roles were reversed. Trying to kill off an Artemi Panarin penalty, Cam Atkinson attempted to clear the puck with the backhand. Carlson skillfully corralled the puck out of the air at the blue line to keep it in the zone.

The power play was able to reset and T.J. Oshie scored the rebound goal soon after.

3. Braden Holtby closes the door to finish the second period

After the Caps took the 2-0 lead, the Blue Jackets made a late push to try to pull one back.

In the last 10 minutes of the second period, Columbus had 13 shot attempts, five of which were not net. Several of those shots were high-quality opportunities, but Holtby came up with the big saves that the team was not getting earlier in the series.

His play ensured the Caps took the 2-0 lead to the locker room.

4. Alex Ovechkin extends the lead to three

Washington entered the third period up 2-0. In each of the first three games, the Caps held a two-goal lead and allowed the Blue Jackets to battle back and tie the score. Even with a two-goal lead, it still felt at the start of the third that the next goal would decide the game. If Columbus pulled within one and got the crowd back on their side, we have seen what that momentum can do for them.

This time, however, Ovechkin struck first. After a board battle behind the net, the puck trickled out to the faceoff circle. Ovechkin grabbed it and quickly snapped the puck past Bobrovsky before anyone could react.

The goal gave Washington their first three-goal lead of the series and shut the Blue Jackets’ comeback down before it could begin.

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Tarik's 3 stars: Ovechkin said Caps would even the series, on Thursday, he helped them do it

Tarik's 3 stars: Ovechkin said Caps would even the series, on Thursday, he helped them do it

COLUMBUS — Alex Ovechkin confidently predicted earlier this week that the Caps were going to win twice at Nationwide Arena and take their first round series back to Washington knotted, two games apiece.

And, on Thursday night, that’s exactly what Ovechkin made sure his team did.

No. 8, who was playing in his franchise-record 101st playoff game, scored his third goal of the playoffs early in the final frame and the Caps beat the Blue Jackets 4-1 in Game 4.

Tarik’s Three Stars of Capitals-Blue Jackets Game 4

1. Tom Wilson, Capitals

After a slow (and penalty-plagued) start to this series, Wilson has become a force. Yes, he took another minor, but the good is far outweighing the bad these days. Big Willy recorded a goal, an assist and a team-high seven shots. 

2. Braden Holtby, Capitals

Holtby had his best game in, well, a long time. He stopped 23 shots, including all eight he saw in a contentious second period.

The goal he surrendered was a nearly unstoppable tip-in by Boone Jenner.

3. T.J. Oshie, Capitals

Osh just plays the game so dang hard.

So it should come as no surprise that he delivered in his team’s biggest game of the season to this point. Oshie, of course, scored the game-winning goal on the power play midway through the second period.

It was No. 77’s second tally of the series. He also directed six shots at the Columbus net and made a couple of hits...all from a player who's been fighting through injury the past few weeks.

Agree? Disagree?

Let us know what you think in the comments.