Rockets rout Knicks

Posted: Friday, January 09, 2004

NEW YORK A chorus of ''Fire Chaney'' chants echoed through Madison Square Garden on a night that was supposed to be all about Stephon Marbury's home debut and Jeff Van Gundy's return.

In a game that turned into a blowout just moments after the opening tip, Van Gundy's Houston Rockets scored 23 of the game's first 25 points to humiliate the revamped New York Knicks 111-79 Thursday night.

The buzz that filled the building turned into boos in a matter of minutes as coach Don Chaney's team came out flat. The first ''Fire Chaney'' chant began with 6:49 remaining in the first quarter after the Knicks fell behind 19-2, and the chant was revived and got louder several times.

bTimberwolves 96, Trail Blazers 75/b

MINNEAPOLIS Kevin Garnett had 26 points and 14 rebounds, and Latrell Sprewell scored 25 points to lead Minnesota over travel-weary Portland.

Sam Cassell added 10 points and 11 assists for Minnesota, which has won 14 of 17 and seven straight at home.

Zach Randolph scored 19 points for the Blazers, who did not arrive in Minneapolis until 3:15 a.m. due to hazardous weather conditions in Portland. The lack of rest translated into sluggish play and 41 percent shooting, as the Blazers fell to 1-13 on the road.

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