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Dec 14, 2012 12:42 AM by Andrew Masuda

Anthony scores 30, Knicks beat slumping Lakers in D'Antoni's return

NEW YORK (AP) - Carmelo Anthony scored 22 of his 30 points in the first quarter, and the New York Knicks held on after he departed with a sprained left ankle to beat the Los Angeles Lakers 116-107 on Thursday night in coach Mike D'Antoni's return to Madison Square Garden.

Firing in 3-pointers and moving the ball to open shooters, things they often struggled to do under D'Antoni, the Knicks won for the eighth time in nine games and improved to 9-0 at home for the first time since the 1992-93 season.

Meanwhile, things are starting as poorly for D'Antoni in Los Angeles as they ended in New York. The Lakers, still without Steve Nash and Pau Gasol, were never really in the game while losing their fourth straight and falling to 9-14.

Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 31 points and brought down 10 rebounds, while Metta World Peace added 22 points and Dwight Howard scored 20.

As a team, the Lakers made 25 of their 29 free throws for an 86 percent clip, but still dropped to 9-14 overall.

JR Smith and Tyson Chandler poured in 18 points each, while Raymond Felton scored 19 for the Knicks, who improved to 17-5.

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