107 - 112 Final - OT
  for this game

Robinson helps Knicks dunk Spurs in OT

Feb 18, 2009 - 5:18 AM NEW YORK (Ticker) -- For his next trick, Nate Robinson hurdled the San Antonio Spurs.

Robinson scored 18 of his 32 points in the fourth quarter and overtime as the New York Knicks snapped a six-game losing streak with Tuesday's 112-107 victory over the Spurs in a tense, back-and-forth contest.

"The best thing about Nate is he can get a shot anytime he wants. The worst thing is he can get a shot anytime he wants," Knicks coach Mike D'Antoni said. "But it's tough to play where you're open every time.

"He has to understand the balance between playing with the team, and he has been doing a great job."

Robinson added 10 rebounds and Chris Duhon had 17 points and eight assists for the Knicks, who persevered in the extra period despite the absence of David Lee. The tough forward fouled out with three seconds left in regulation.

Despite capturing his second All-Star Slam Dunk title on Saturday, Robinson saved his most impressive feat for this one, during which he shot 13-of-23 from the field, including 4-of-8 from the arc.

Robinson hurdled 7-foot Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard - his competitor in the event - on his way to the championship.

"It's tiring because you use a lot of energy and you have appearances," Robinson said of his experience at All-Star Weekend. "You have dunking and running around and looking at all the celebrities.

"It's all fun but, at the same time, now it's back to school, too. Now, it's time to get back to the books."

But it has been the diminutive 5-8 guard's play in what he has deemed the classroom that has heads turning.

It was the first time in Robinson's career that he recorded consecutive 30-point games. He collected 33 points, 15 assists, nine rebounds and five steals in Wednesday's overtime loss to the Los Angeles Clippers.

Robinson carried that over to Tuesday, when he tied the game at 102-102 with 20 seconds left in regulation on a wild drive to the basket that sent him sprawling to the floor on the baseline.

"Whenever they switched at the top, they had (Matt) Bonner or a big and coach said, 'Drive it,'" Robinson said.

He then scored the Knicks' first six points in OT - on a combination of hard-charging layups and rhythm jumpers - to forge a 108-104 advantage. Al Harrington added a lefthanded layup to give New York a six-point lead with 1:31 left, forcing a timeout by San Antonio.

"Overall, I thought we did pretty good," Spurs superstar Tim Duncan said. "They shot the ball really well, attacked the rim really well and Nate came in and really gave them a boost."

"He's a wonderful player," San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. "He's got a lot of chutzpah. He gets after it. He want to do things that help the team win. He kind of does for them what Manu (Ginobili) does for us in a way. He's got that kind of spirit, that kind of aggressiveness and he's wonderful."

The Spurs pulled within 110-107 on Roger Mason's deep two with 27.5 ticks left, but did not score again.

Duncan, who missed his patented bank shot as time expired in regulation, collected 26 points and 15 rebounds for the Spurs, who played without Ginobili (sore right ankle). They fell to 3-3 on their eight-game road trip while the rodeo occupies the AT&T Center.

"Shots started to go down, and I started feeling a little better about it," Duncan said. "I wish the last one could have gone, too, but such is life."

Working over Lee in the post for most of the game, Duncan had his club on pace to pull out yet another win down the stretch. He dumped in a short turnaround in the lane with 30 seconds left to give San Antonio a 102-100 lead, setting the stage for Robinson's tying layup.

On the ensuing possession, the Knicks used some strategy to their advantage for a change.

Lee, who fouled out on the play, was caught guarding Tony Parker on switch and, with New York having a foul to give, grabbed the slick point guard when he looked to have the step on a drive.

Duncan missed the aforementioned bank shot after a timeout and an inbounds pass from the sideline.

New York was in a similar situation on February 8, when it suffered a heart-breaking one-point loss to the Portland Trail Blazers. The Knicks did not give away their remaining foul and allowed Brandon Roy to scoop in the winner at the buzzer.

Coach Mike D'Antoni admitted the next day that he did not know the status of his team's foul situation. He was on top of it in this one - as was his team.

"We had one to give," D'Antoni said about Tuesday's situation. "It's just one of those things where he (Lee) didn't want to do the wrong thing. It worked out."

Lee was fully aware of what he was doing.

"We were actually trying to learn from our past mistakes," Lee said. "We were in a similar situation at Portland with three or four seconds to go.

"... This time we have me on Parker, they have the single side with a shooter in the corner. So Parker would have been able to get to the basket for a good shot or, if we had the help, he would have kicked it out for three. So, I took one for the team there."

Wilson Chandler scored 17 points and Harrington added 11 and 10 rebounds for New York, which outscored San Antonio, 10-5, in overtime after the teams were tied after both the third and fourth quarters.

New York, which had lost all the games on both its three-game homestand and road trip of the same length, improved to 1-2 in OT games this season. San Antonio fell to 4-1 in those situations.

Roger Mason scored 20 points and Parker added 14 and seven assists for the Spurs.