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Curry, Lee help Knicks edge Grizzlies

Dec 5, 2006 - 3:13 AM NEW YORK (Ticker) -- Red-hot Eddy Curry helped the New York Knicks to a rare home win.

Curry had 26 points and a career-high 15 rebounds and David Lee added a season-best 20 and 11 as the Knicks won just their second home game of the season with a 98-90 victory over the lowly Memphis Grizzlies.

New York entered Monday's matchup with a dismal 1-7 home mark, including Saturday's 103-100 setback to Toronto. Last season, the Knicks tied for the worst home record in the NBA at 15-26.

"We got to keep playing well at home and (Monday) was step one," Knicks coach Isiah Thomas said. "But we got to make another step on Wednesday and if we're going to be a serious playoff contender, then we're going to have to control our home court and we're going to have to play better at home. If we can do that this month, then we put ourselves in the race and you're going down, January, February and March, then things are a lot different."

"This is our home court. They (fans) only want the best for us," Curry said. "It's frustrating for them to see us go out there and throw the ball away and miss shots. They just want to see us win."

After trailing by as many as 17 points, Memphis cut the deficit to 93-88 on two foul shots by Stromile Swift with 2:47 left. But Quentin Richardson made an 11-footer and Jamal Crawford sank a pair of free throws to keep the Grizzlies at bay.

"I thought the biggest thing was that we got it down to five points and then we didn't run what we were supposed to run," Grizzlies coach Mike Fratello said. "We had no execution. It was disappointing that we worked that hard to get it from down 17."

It was Curry's second straight consecutive game with a double-double and fourth this season after collecting just 10 a season ago. He has seven straight games with at least 20 points.

"I think the guards did a good job penetrating and opening (things) up for me and Eddy," Lee said. "Anytime Eddy plays the way he's been playing he's going to be tough to stop in the paint. He opens it up for all of us."

Richardson scored 20 points and Stephon Marbury chipped in 16 for New York, which shot 56 percent (36-of-64) from the floor and forced 19 turnovers.

"That's definitely a good feeling," Richardson said of his teammates' efforts. "We were resilient. We stayed in there. We hung in there and we grinded it out."

In the second quarter, Curry and Lee combined to score all the points during a 10-4 surge to help the Knicks push their advantage to 41-27 with 5 1/2 minutes to go.

Hakim Warrick scored 19 points and Chucky Atkins contributed nine and 11 assists for the Grizzlies, who shot 43 percent (43-of-76) and fell to 1-9 on the road.

"We don't get stops," Fratello said. "We need to spend a lot of time going back to basic fundamentals on how to guard the basketball and go from there."

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