Video: Knicks’ J.R. Smith breaks ankles of Cavaliers’ Tristan Thompson
J.R. Smith put on a show during New York’s 117-86 blowout victory over Cleveland at Madison Square Garden on Thursday.
Midway through the third quarter, the Knicks guard hit Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson with an ankle-breaking pull-up crossover dribble before knocking down a mid-range jumper.
Smith set up the sequence by dribbling to his right near the top of the key before stopping on a dime and pulling the ball from right-to-left through his legs. Thompson just kept going, though, and his legs went wobbly because he couldn’t handle the deceleration. Smith’s jumper gave New York a 74-46 lead.
The 2013 Sixth Man of the Year had another highlight earlier in the game, as he drove past 2014 No. 1 overall pick Anthony Bennett for a baseline slam.
With New York leading 22-9, Smith used a stutter-dribble crossover to go from right-to-left, freezing Bennett in his tracks. The move helped him easily turn the corner, and Smith took two long gather steps before throwing down a strong right-handed slam. The quickness of the dribble move and the power of the dunk brought New York’s bench to its feet.
Smith finished with 19 points (on 8-for-16 shooting), four rebounds and two assists. Carmelo Anthony and Tim Hardaway, Jr. each scored 29 points to lead New York.
Kyrie Irving scored a team-high 24 points (on 10-for-25 shooting) and added six rebounds and three assists for Cleveland. Dion Waiters added 21 points (on 8-for-15 shooting) and three rebounds in a losing effort.
New York improved to 19-27 with its fourth straight win. Cleveland dropped to 16-30 with its third straight loss.