NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Knicks had old faces on the floor and a new look to their arena. Only Kemba Walker and the Charlotte Bobcats kept it from being a completely successful night.
Walker scored 18 points and made the tiebreaking basket with 1:31 remaining as the Bobcats spoiled the Knicks' return to Madison Square Garden with an 85-83 preseason victory Friday night.
Walker finished with nine rebounds and six assists as the Bobcats wrapped up a 5-3 preseason. Josh McRoberts had 19 points and nine rebounds, Gerald Henderson scored 18 points and Bismack Biyombo grabbed 20 rebounds in what Walker said was a "huge" victory for Charlotte.
"It shows us that we can play because the Knicks didn't just give us that game, we worked for that game," he said. "So it shows us that we can go out there and compete with the best of them."
Carmelo Anthony scored 13 points but shot 4 of 17, missing a potential tying jumper in the final seconds.
The Knicks had a 19-point lead in the first half but then missed 18 of 22 shots in the third quarter. They regained the lead on Anthony's jumper with 2:26 remaining before Walker made consecutive high-arching jumpers in the lane, the second making it 85-83 with 1:31 to play.
It was the Knicks' lone home game on the final night of the NBA's preseason schedule. Madison Square Garden reopened Thursday after completion of its $1 billion renovation that spanned the last three offseasons, featuring a giant new videoboard, two overhead bridges with views of the court and an expanded entrance from Seventh Ave.
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