J.R. Smith leads Knicks to 7th win in a row

J.R. Smith hasn’t had a run like this since high school.

No NBA reserve has in more than two decades.

Smith scored 37 points, his third consecutive 30-point outing, and the New York Knicks beat the Charlotte Bobcats 111-102 on Friday night for their season-high seventh straight victory.

”He is focused. He is dialed in. Locked in,” Carmelo Anthony said. ”He is playing extremely well and his confidence is sky high. We are following his lead.”

Anthony had 32 points and Raymond Felton added 18 for the Knicks, who have the longest current streak in the NBA. They built a 30-point lead that was reduced to single digits for the second game in a row.

Gerald Henderson tied a career high with 35 points for the Bobcats. Kemba Walker added 16, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had 14 and Ben Gordon finished with 12.

Smith had 23 points at halftime, shooting 9 of 11 from the field. He is the first player with three straight 30-point games as a reserve since Ricky Pierce in 1990.

– Reported by Jeff Bernstein of the Associated Press