WASHINGTON - It was history in the making Wednesday night at the Verizon Center.
The Knicks set a franchise record for futility by losing their 13th consecutive game. This time they were beaten, 101-91, by the Washington Wizards. The losing streak surpasses the mark set during the 1984-85 season.
The loss almost had to be expected considering that most of the players who had been the Knicks' regular starters earlier this season were either injured or now playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Knicks started a lineup consisting of Tim Hardaway Jr., Quincy Acy, Cole Aldrich, Pablo Prigioni and Jose Calderon against a Wizards team with the fourth-best record in the Eastern Conference.
The Knicks (5-33) haven't won a game since Dec. 12 at Boston. They now have lost 23 of their last 24. And things could very well get worse quickly. Seven-time All-Star Carmelo Anthony, who watched Wednesday night's game from the bench, said earlier in the day that he might consider having surgery or taking a prolonged break if his left knee isn't feeling better in a week when the team plays Milwaukee in London.
Wednesday night's game was a record-breaker, but before the game both Knicks coach Derek Fisher and Calderon, who led the Knicks with 17 points, said that they were unaware that the Knicks could set a record with a loss.
"We can't get caught up in the history and the record and the number of games," Fisher said. "So we come out and try to win one game and then celebrate because we broke a streak? No. That's not who we are going to be. We are who we are right now . . . We came out tonight and controlled what we could control. These guys came out tonight and played as hard as they could against a really good team."
The Knicks never led in the game and trailed by as many as 21. They did manage to make it a five-point game when they went on a 21-8 run spanning the third and fourth quarters, which made the mood in the locker room a little less somber.
The Wizards were led by Nene Hilario's 20 points and John Wall's 18 points and eight assists.