Knicks beat Pistons 102-87 before enthusiastic London crowd

The Knicks beat the Pistons in London Thursday 102-87  to a standing ovation as the teams traveled across the pond for the NBA’s International series.

The game took place before a sellout crowd at London’s 02 arena.  Commissioner David Stern and other NBA Alums were in attendance in what was a successful showing for the league, which is eagerly looking to expand the game overseas.

The Pistons wore whites as the designated home team, but the packed crowd heavily favored the Knicks.

The Knicks led throughout most of the game,  and held a lead of at least 10 points throughout the first half.

According to the Associated Press, Knicks shooting guard Iman Shumpert made his season-debut in this game.  Last year’s first round pick started in the backcourt after seven months after having major ACL surgery.  Shumpert had 8 points in 15 minutes on the floor.

Carmelo Anthony scored in high volume early, holding true as the league’s leading first quarter scorer.  Carmelo finished the first half with 18 points, and the Knicks were able to go back into the locker room at the half with a 15-point lead.

Amare Stoudemire also had a nice showing, notching a season-high 17 points– most of which came from trips to the free throw line.

On several occasions, when Anthony was at the free-throw line, chants of “MVP” could be heard throughout the crowd.

In the second quarter, Knicks center Tyson Chandler was fouled hard on a fast break to the basket by Pistons forward Austin Daye, followed by a chorus of boos from the crowd.  Daye was tagged with a flagrant foul for his efforts.

The Pistons narrowed the margin in the third quarter with a scoring run led Willie Bynum, who had 22 points off the bench.  The Pistons narrowed a lead that was as high as 20 points in the first half down to four points.

The Pistons stayed within a shout throughout the fourth, but the dagger came when Steve Novak hit a 3-pointer to extend the Knicks lead to 17 with only three minutes left.