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Game 73: Celtics (38-34) @ Knicks (45-26) Open Thread

 

http://a.espncdn.com/photo/2013/0328/bos_g_-shavlik-randolph_mb_400.jpgBoston at New York
7:30 P.M. ET
Madison Square Garden

CSNNE

Offensive Efficiency:
Boston: 100.7 points/100 possessions (22nd)
New York:
107.9 points/100 possessions (3rd)

Defensive Efficiency:
Boston: 99.7 points allowed/100 possessions (5th)
New York:
 103.1 points allowed/100 possessions (16th)

Probable Knicks Starters:
Raymond Felton (PG), Pablo Prigioni (SG), Iman Shumpert (SF), Carmelo Anthony (PF), and Kenyon Martin (C)

View From The Opposing Bench: KnickerBlogger

Thumbnail: The Celtics traveled to New York with revenge on their minds. On Tuesday in Boston, the Knicks pushed their winning streak to five games, giving the Celtics their fifth consecutive loss. Since that game, both teams have gone 2-0. After a strong performance on Friday against the Hawks, Boston looks to have it carry over into Sunday night’s game against the Knicks, who are now winners of seven straight games. That New York winning streak is the longest current one in the NBA as well as the team’s longest this season. Just 13 days ago at TD Garden, the Celtics were very close to ending the Heat’s 22-game winning streak, but this time they are at a different “garden” trying to end an opposition’s streak.

Fortunately for Boston, Tyson Chandler could miss his 10th consecutive game. Although the Knicks are 7-2 without him this season, they are still four points worse per 100 possessions without Chandler on the floor. J.R. Smith has stepped up in a huge way for this New York team that is well on its way to ending the Celtics’ five-year reign as Atlantic Division champions. With the Nets’ loss on Saturday night, the Knicks are very close to finishing atop the division for the first time since 1993-94. New York has separated from Brooklyn and Boston mainly because of Smith, who is the first bench player in more than two decades to score at least 30 points in three consecutive games (via Elias). In addition, the Knicks have two of the four highest scorers in the league over the last ten games: Carmelo Anthony (second, 29.6 PPG) and Smith (fourth, 28.6 PPG).

On Sunday, the Celtics will hope to deploy Courtney Lee for more than the six minutes that he played on Friday. That was his first game back after suffering an ankle injury a week ago. Boston needs Lee to help the team’s defense as it attempts to handle all of the Knicks’ offensive weapons. Although the Celtics lost Tuesday’s rebounding battle by only one, they gave up a whopping 15 offensive rebounds to the Knicks, which led to 29 second chance points for New York that night. Shavlik Randolph hopes to reduce that number on Sunday after showing off some impressive rebounding skills on Friday. He became just the third Celtic reserve in almost 30 years to grab at least 13 rebounds in that little of playing time. Boston will have to play much more like it did on Friday than it did on Tuesday to have a chance at winning this game against the Knicks.

Prediction: If Chandler sits, the Celtics are able to prevent the Knicks from getting extra opportunities. Boston steps up to get its second victory at Madison Square Garden this season.

Celtics 105, Knicks 102

For more Celtics coverage and pertinent statistics, follow Celtics Hub and Stats Adam Lowenstein on Twitter: @CelticsHub and @StatsAdam

  • CelticsBIG3

    I'm still freaked out by the Kevin Ware broken leg injury. That sh!t was f'n GRUESOME!!! Not impressed with the complete lack of class from CBS replaying it several times and then staying with the game while he screamed on the floor for 5 minutes.

  • jman

    Bradley needs to take a seat and Lee take his place. Lee is almost as good defensively but much better offense. Bradley needs to calm down. He's pushing.
    Also, is Stern and Co going to fine the Heat for the no shows tonight?

    • Anthony

      Not likely since Heat supposedly gave the league enough notice and all 3 guys are with the team.

      More pressing question is how much did the Lakers pay the league to get the last 2 Ws?

      No call on the 3FGA by Rubio then the no call 3FGA by DCousins which came right after the phantom call Kobe. Where was the contact?

      The league is such a joke.

  • Chief

    @jamn, in a perfect world yes……in sterns world probably not.

  • The Cardinal

    We really need Jet to have another good game. I can't remember when he last had at least two good games in a row. As for Bradley, he's simply not a point guard and never will be. I'm amazed that we've won as many
    games as we have with him as a primary ball handler.

  • elroz

    This game will show, once again, that it is NOT NYK that the Celtis should want, but the Pacers. The Celtics are 2-0 against Indiana, but are going to be 1-3 against NYK. NYK have impact players that Boston and Doc have no answer for unfortunately.

    • someguyinsac

      A little early to give up isn't it? It's near halftime and not the end of the game yet, you know?

      • elroz

        65 points allowed at halftime… they simply cannot stop NYK with the personnel they have – Crawford, Wilcox, Green, Terry. These are 1/2 of the time defensive liabilities..the other 1/2 just enough to credible. They should play Indiana that has trouble scoring against everybody.

        Not NYK who are 3-1 against Boston.

        • someguyinsac

          "With the personnel they have" granted that's a part of it today, but I still won't give up on them before halftime or not.

    • GymRat

      I disagreed with you in the other thread, and though I still think you can throw regular season records out the window come post season (does anyone really think Milwaukee could sweep us when it mattered?), after the last two match ups I have to agree. NYK has so many good shooters that when they get hot, they are impossible to guard and Smith has finally gotten consistent enough to be the clear sixth man of the year.

      • Anthony

        I agree that regular season series aren't a good indicator of playoff match-ups. If that were the case, I'm so glad the Bobcats didn't make the playoffs. The Knicks are just too streaky for me to think that they can do much in the playoff. Outside of Novak, every other shooter they have are streaky. He was absolutely just shutdown last playoffs. Even if they get hot for 1 series, I just don't see how they can keep that up for the duration of 4 series. Aren't they just Denver 2.0 from a few years back?

        • GymRat

          I would say what separates them from Denver 2.0 is their improved defense (especially with Chandler in the line up and the addition of K-Mart) and Carmelo and Smith's ability to get into the paint at will and get to the line. Denver never had those weapons, they just outran you and tried to outscore you.

          So as much as I agree they are streaky I can definitely see them putting together at least 4 good showings out of 7 against anyone in the East save for maybe Miami and Chicago.

          The real match-up problem is they like to clog the paint and are happy to let teams take jumpers. So we do…then if we don't hit them it's one and done, while they drop 3's and go to the line.

          I still think we can beat NYK but if given the option – with Granger now out for the season and Hill in a slump, I prefer Indy.

          • Anthony

            I was referring to the Denver teams when Melo was there. Similarities are both teams are a dangerous team capable of winning a series if they get hot. Winning 2, 3, or 4 series? Highly unlikely.

            2010 – Melo, Billups, JR, Nene, KMart, Affalo, Lawson, Birdman.
            2008 – Iverson, Melo, KMart, Kleiza, Camby, JR, Ant Carter, Najera, Nene

            Point is I wouldn't want to play either team if KG isn't at least 85% healthy. Also contingent on the health of the Knicks, specifically Tyson Chandler. I think I'm 51/49 leaning towards the Knicks. Hibbert, DWest and even Hansborough and Mahinmi might too much size for a 7 game stretch. Unless Hibbert disappears in the playoffs again.

            Hmmm… tough call.

  • hydrofluoric

    I hate the refs tonight.

  • someguyinsac

    It'd be nice if a couple of other guys besides Pierce and Green, (at this point anyways), showed up tonight, wouldn't it?

    (Never mind the seemingly home court reffing, which might dissipate by the end of the game.)

    • hydrofluoric

      The hunger seems to be gone.

  • The Cardinal

    It's simply not our night when a desperation 3 goes in!

  • The Cardinal

    I'm watching the Knicks' broadcast and I'm hoping for a miraculous comeback just so Clyde Frazier and Mike Breen will STFU.

  • elroz

    To me it was clear abut a week ago that Boston should want to play Indiana..and that's what I posted. Then this Lowensthein dude from the C Hub goes: "they should want to avoid Indiana" …has he even watched the Celtics game this year? NYK gives them MAJOR problems that Indiana cannot.

    65 points allowed at halftime… they simply cannot stop NYK with the personnel they have – Crawford, Wilcox, Green, Terry. These are 1/2 of the time defensive liabilities..the other 1/2 just enough to credible. They should play Indiana that has trouble scoring against everybody.

    Not NYK who are 3-1 against Boston. Boston is 2-0 against Indiana.

    • Anthony

      Lowenstein is simply expressing his opinion that he feels NYK is an easier match-up. You can agree or disagree with him but it doesn't make your opinion any more valid. Regular season record is meaningless come playoff time. Celts were 3-1 against the Heat 2 yrs ago and got knocked out in 5. There are tons of other examples of teams winning the regular season series but losing the playoff series. NYK, IMO, doesn't play a playoff style game in that they rely too much on the 3 and hot shooting to win. That kind of game just aren't allowed to happen in 4 out of 7 games. Also, they are old and no one knows how injuries will hold up for them.

      Fact is Celts will not go very far without at least a semi-healthy KG. If you haven't noticed, KG wasn't in the last 2 Celts-NYK match-ups.

      Pierce has more rebounds Kenyon, Shumpert, Felton, Prigrioni, Copeland and Novak combined too. Doesn't really mean much except how you choose to look at it.

  • elroz

    Can you go into battle with Wilcox, Terry, Green, Crawford? I doubt it. Certainly not most of the time. This team has NO CHARACTER and no will.

    J.R. Smith has more rebounds than Wilcox, Bass, and Green combined! Can you comprehend this?

    This team is just a bunch of bodies.

    • Anthony

      That's usually the case when you don't play with your 2 All-Stars, star rookie, and a productive 7-8th rotation guy.

  • end of shit

    Celtics are history
    kg ,no kg ,pierce ,does n 't matter

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