The New York Knicks took a two to nothing advantage over the Boston Celtics in the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs. Being in the position of leading a series for the first time since April 29, 2001 - when the Knicks took a 2-1 lead over Vince Carter’s Toronto Raptors in the first round (nobody would have bet on an upset), it’s no wonder the whole NYK community is hungry to see their team advance in the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Having to take out Boston first, one of New York’s biggest rivals of the past decade, the team that swept the Knicks two playoff editions ago, only adds to the fire. With Rajon Rondo done for the season and Ray Allen departed, the Celtics are betting on veterans Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce but so far they failed to deliver a win. Young guns Jeff Green and Jordan Crawford looked decent these first two games but Mike Woodson’s defense plan didn’t gave his opponents a chance as the Knicks took the Celtics on two record lows. In game one, Boston was held to only 8 points in the 4th, the fewest points they scored in a playoff quarter, and to just 25 in the second half – another record low. In game two, C’s only scored 23 after halftime, just 3 days after their awful performance. The blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice, Knick fans can move over the worst loss in history, a few years ago, 104-59 at the TD Garden.
Having the pressure lift-off, New York will move to Boston for games 3 and 4 and try to end the series with a well-deserved sweep. It will be much harder against a hostile crowd but they already did it twice in the regular season and one time in the preseason. If Carmelo Anthony will continue to shoot and score 30 or more and JR Smith will play like NBA’s sixth man of the year that he is, it’s risky to bet on a win for the home team. Jason Kidd and newly addition Kenyon Martin were huge pieces in the first two matchups, and we can only expect similar performances from the two.
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