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Wizards 111, Knicks 108: Scenes from a new beginning

Same tour, different Gilligan.

Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

New York got down by too many points early. They proceeded to throttle Washington at the start of the second half, thanks in large part to a magnificent flourish from the Flamingo. Then they took a small lead in the fourth quarter. Sadly they didn't have quite enough juice left to close it out. I believe that's what you call a classic (classic!) fake comeback.

At first we were treated to Phil Jackson's zen ruminating.

Unfortunately it got so bad so quickly that Clyde Frazier just couldn't handle it. He wanted Mike Breen to leave him completely alone.

The Wizards were launching from anywhere they damn well pleased and connecting on practically everything. John Wall still felt some frustrations:

The Knicks defense really suffered from poor organization. Even if this is a 2-3 zone it is pure buns:

Part of the reason the Knicks don't have the type of uptempo success that many teams enjoy is that they lack the personnel. Do you really think Jose Calderon can keep multiple defenders off balance and then zip this alley oop into the right space? Even if he could, he might not be daring enough to try.

For Calderon to have a successful pick and roll so many more things have to go right.

When Calderon tries something a little out of the box it usually requires a 7'3" guy to be guarded by a 6'5" guy with about 15-20 feet of space. Like this little number:

Then Kristaps took over...

Soak it in. It's so sweet.

In the end, though, the Human Tornado whirled his way around the floor and picked the defense apart to keep the game just out of reach.

Langston Galloway got a fantastic look at the buzzer and Arron Afflalo looked as disengaged by it as anyone has ever looked. Another missed opportunity.

Time for the All-Star break. Recharge them batteries! Charlie will have your full recap a little later.