NEW YORK (Sporting Alert, Box Score) — John Wall scored 24 points, 11 assists and six rebounds to lead the Washington Wizards to a 102-91 victory over the New York Knicks in the opening game of the Christmas Day fixtures on Thursday.
Wall shot 10-of-17 from the field in another top performance, but did pick up a technical after a coming together with New York’s Quincy Acy, who was thrown out of the game for a flagrant foul 2 during the incident.
The former Kentucky star, who reacted to the hard foul from Acy said admits that he needs to try and start keeping his cool in situations such as those.
“I thought it was a hard foul,” Wall told ESPN after the game.
“But me being a key player to my team I got to hold my emotions in and try not to get a technical or get ejected as that could have cost us the game.
“I have to keep my composure and move on to the next play. I have been in that situation before so I just got to do a better job. I am a mature player and I know how much I mean to my team.
“…I need to do a better job in letting the referees handle those situations and keep playing basketball.”
The 24-year-old Wall has now scored at least 20 points and 10 assists in a single game this season for the ninth time, which leads the NBA in that category.
Bradley Beal added 17 points, five rebounds and five assists for the Wizards (20-8), who stopped a two game skid.
Carmelo Anthony scored a game-high 34 points to lead the Knicks (5-26), but took 28 shots for his total points, include going 0-6 from three-point range.
Jose Calderon had 16 points for New York, who dropped their sixth straight and 16 of the last 17.
The Knicks also have the most losses of any team in the NBA this season, which is a worrying sign for head coach Derek Fisher and the man backing him, Phil Jackson.
New York, who shot 18.2 percent from the three-point range on 4-of-22, has also lost eight successive games at Madison Square Garden in the same single season for the first time in franchise history.
Nene Hilario went 6-of-8 from the floor to score 12 points for Washington, with Rasual Butler finishing with 11 points and six rebounds and Marcin Gortat ending with 10 points and nine boards in the victory.
The Wizards sit third in the Eastern Conference standings behind Toronto and Atlanta and Wall said part of their success this season is that they are having a good time.
“We are trying to build off last year’s success,” he said. “We know that we are no longer an underdog team anymore. We enjoy playing with each other and we have great chemistry.”
Cole Aldrich, who scored 10 points off the bench, was the third and only other New York player to reach double digits, as the hosts were heavily criticized for playing poor defense and falling into one-on-one style of play in the defeat.
The Wizards will return to the court on Saturday when they play host to the Boston Celtics at Verizon Cente on Saturday, while the New York Knicks will be on the road on the same day at the Sacramento Kings.