NEW YORK — Aware that the New York Knicks are still learning a new offensive system, the Washington Wizards wanted to put pressure on Carmelo Anthony. It worked especially well in the third quarter.
Paul Pierce and Garrett Temple each scored 17 points, and the Wizards beat the Knicks for the fourth straight time, 98-83 on Tuesday night.
Trailing 45-40 at halftime, the Wizards dominated a quarter that cost them a few games last season. They forced New York to miss 16 of 22 shots while limiting Anthony to just 2 for 6 from the floor.
Washington broke open the game with a 14-0 run in the quarter, when it outscored New York 32-15.
“I thought we established our defense. We picked up our pressure,” said Pierce, who had eight points in the period.
“I think we did a great job of mixing up our coverages on (Anthony) at times. I was putting pressure on him. Then when he moved, Otto (Porter) had a chance to guard him. A number of guys that gave him different looks.”
Kevin Seraphin came off the bench and had 15 points for Washington, which won its third straight game. Backup guard Andre Miller added 12 points.
Iman Shumpert had 19 points for the Knicks (2-2), who had won their last two games. Anthony chipped in 18 points despite shooting 8 for 23 from the floor.
“I thought they sped us up tonight on the offensive end, took us kind of out of our rhythm, our flow of offense,” Anthony said. “I think that was a big key, especially coming out in that third quarter. They made their run in the third quarter and seemed to take control of the game.”
The Wizards swept the series last season and haven’t lost to New York since April 9, 2013.
After Amare Stoudemire’s layup made it 56-all with 6:33 remaining in the third, Pierce started Washington’s run with a 19-foot jumper. After John Wall’s free throw, the Wizards started to pull away on a 3-pointer by Temple and a finger roll layup from Wall that extended the lead to 64-56 with 3:19 left.
Backup center Seraphin then hit a pair of jumpers to extend the lead to 70-56 with 1:13 left to play in the quarter before Tim Hardaway Jr. stopped the run with a jumper with 51 seconds left in the period.
New York missed 10 shots from the field and committed three turnovers during its scoreless drought. “We wanted to take them out of the triangle. Make them catch the ball in places we wanted them to catch the ball in,” Temple said.
The Knicks drew within 77-71 with 7:53 play after Shumpert’s fourth 3-pointer of the night, but Seraphin and Miller added a pair of baskets that pushed the lead back up to 81-71 with 6:56 to go.
“In the third quarter, they wanted it more than we did to start that third quarter and it was tough to get the momentum back after they got control of it,” Knicks coach Derek Fisher said.