It’s been 13 years since the New York Knicks won two playoff games in the same year.
On Tuesday night, the No.2 seed in the Eastern Conference will look to accomplish what they last did in 2000.
The Knicks are set to host the Boston Celtics in Game Two of their first-round NBA playoff series. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. ET on MSG. The game will air on TNT, but viewers can watch a free live stream online with TNT Overtime.
Game One was close for most of the way, but the Knicks pulled out a win with a dominant fourth quarter. They held the Celtics to eight points in the final 12 minutes and forced them to turn the ball over just as many times.
Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith led New York in scoring, just like they have all year. The two combined to score 51 of the team’s 85 points. Anthony and Smith only made 41.6 percent of their shots, but hit key baskets in the final minutes to secure the victory.
Boston struggled to score as their top players didn’t shoot a high percentage from the field. Paul Peirce and Kevin Garnett missed 17 of their 27 total attempts and seven of their eight shots from three-point range.
Without the injured Rajon Rondo, Boston has struggled, at times, on offense. In Game Two, the Celtics will have to make a few adjustments if they hope to even up the series at 1-1.
"We know we've got to play through Kevin a lot more. I mean, he's probably, he is one of our best passers," Pierce said a day after Game One. "He's one of our most unselfish players, so we have to do a better job of just getting him the ball, a lot more than he got it yesterday. Doc said he wanted Kevin to be aggressive, he wants him to take 20 shots."
New York hopes that a few of their players affected by injuries will be able to help them in Game Two.
Tyson Chandler got the start at center, but only played 20 minutes. He said after the game that he sat down the stretch because of his conditioning, not because of his neck injury.
"Obviously, it's going to be a little stiff, a little sore in there. But I felt great," Chandler said. "It's just when you're out for so long, you're not playing against some park and rec dudes, you're playing against the best of the best. I'm trying to condition myself, playing against the best of the best. It's just getting my timing back, getting my legs under me, getting back into the flow of the game."
Pablo Prigioni will likely be back in the starting lineup after sitting out Game One with an ankle sprain. The guard started 18 games in the regular season.
Amare Stoudemire, however, won’t come back in Game Two. He’s expected to miss the entire series against the Boston Celtics.
In the regular season, the Knicks won three of four head-to-head matchups between the clubs, and they’re expected to win their fifth straight against their division rivals. New York is a seven-point favorite at most Las Vegas casinos.
Prediction: New York 95, Boston 85
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