NY Sports Update, January 20th, 2012: Knicks lose to the Suns, Ranger beat Predators but lose to Penguins and other sports news


Knicks Edged Out by Phoenix Suns; Rangers Shut Out Predators, Lose to Penguins; Islanders Win Two Straight; A Look Ahead: Giants - 49ers

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Knicks Edged Out by Phoenix Suns

The Knicks' losing streak reached four games with Wednesday's heartbreaking 91-88 loss to the Phoenix Suns.

The Suns snapped their own five-game losing streak thanks to a fine performance by seven-time All-Star Steve Nash, who hit six key foul shots in the game's final seconds as part of a 26-point, 11-rebound performance. Shannon Brown and Grant Hill added 14 points apiece.

Amar'e Stoudemire led New York (6-8) with 23 points; rookie Iman Shumpert finished right behind him with 20 points. However, Carmelo Anthony had an uncharacteristically poor game offensively, perhaps due to lingering discomfort from his sprained ankle and wrist. The NBA's third-leading scorer eked out just 12 points.

The Knicks played better on defense, tallying 54 rebounds to the Suns' 38. Ultimately, offensive difficulties were what doomed their effort.

The home stand will continue this weekend as the Knicks host Milwaukee on Friday and Denver on Saturday.

Rangers Shut Out Predators, Lose to Penguins

On Tuesday Night, the New York Rangers triumphed over the Nashville Predators with a 3-0 victory.

Henrik Lundqvist shut down the Predators' offense with 27 saves for his fourth shutout of the season. The Rangers picked up a goal in each period, with Dan Girardi scoring in the first, John Mitchell in the second and Ryan Callahan in the third.

That last goal was particularly unusual. In the game's final minute, Callahan dived to try and knock the puck into the empty net, and Predators wing Martin Erat dived on top of him. The officials awarded Callahan a goal.

The Rangers didn't fare as well against Pittsburgh on Thursday night, falling 4-1 in a game that was closer than the final score appeared.

The Penguins jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first period. New York (29-12-4) tied it up on Carl Hagelin's second-period goal, assisted by Marian Gaborik's perfect backhanded pass.

It was all Pittsburgh in the third period, though, as Richard Park scored 2:23 in to give his team a 2-1 lead. Evgeni Malkin put the game away with two more goals for the suddenly hot Penguins.

With 62 points on the season, the Rangers slipped behind Detroit in the NHL standings but maintained their lead over the second-place Bruins in the Eastern Conference standings.

They will have a chance to widen that gap as they travel to Boston on Saturday.

Islanders Win Two Straight

After a tough four-game home stand saw two wins and two losses, the Islanders returned to form on the road with victories over Washington and Philadelphia.

In Washington Tuesday Night, the Islanders picked up two goals from PA Parenteau, his first career multi-goal game. John Tavares contributed New York's other goal, extending his personal point streak to 10 games.

Meanwhile, Evgeni Nabokov made 17 saves for the shutout victory. It was the 51st shutout of his distinguished career, but his first as an Islander.

The Islanders traveled to Philadelphia two days later and came away with another convincing win. Matt Moulson, Mark Streit, Josh Bailey and Michael Grabner all contributed goals to the 4-1 victory.

Tavares extended his point streak to 11 games with two assists, matching Boston's David Krejci for the longest such streak of the 2011-12 season.

Nabokov came through with another excellent performance, stopping 40 of 41 shots for New York (18-21-6). Matt Read scored the Flyers' only goal in the third period, ending his bid for a second straight shutout.

The performance was still good for Nabokov's 302nd career win, tying him with Hall of Famer Turk Broda on the all-time list.

The Islanders will return to Long Island to host the Hurricanes Saturday.

A Look Ahead: Giants - 49ers

After an upset victory over the Green Bay Packers, the Giants are on the road to San Francisco to play for a spot in the Super Bowl.

In Week 10 of the regular season, the Giants fell to the 49ers 27-20 at Candlestick Park. Powering the San Francisco offense were tight ends Delanie Walker and Vernon Davis, who combined for 109 yards and a touchdown.

New York, though, has had plenty of luck shutting down tight ends in the last few weeks. The Giants defense held Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez to four catches and 44 yards, while Packers tight end Jermichael Finley had just 37 yards in Sunday's game.

Giants fans hope that trend will continue against San Francisco on Sunday.



Make sure to check back on Tuesday for our Post Game Coverage of the
Giants as they take on the 49ers in the NFC Championship Games!