Pacers(12-12) vs Knicks(7-16)
12/17, 7:30 on MSG
Welcome to MSGKnickz33 pregame show, im your host Jazzy Jeff and its time to take a look at tomorrow nights game. The Indiana Pacers defeated the Miami Heat 106-103 on Saturday night. Jamaal Tinsley led the way with 26 points and helped the Pacers reach .500 (12-12). Alot of experts thought that Indiana would not have what it takes to be a playoff team in the improved Eastern conference. The emergence of small forward Danny Granger has played a key part in the Pacers success.
Key Matchup: Mike Dunleavy vs Jamal Crawford
Mike Dunleavy is a more consistent, better discipined version of Crawford without the fancy ballhandling skills. We do not know which Crawford we will see tomorrow: The crawford that had a good game against New Jersey or the Crawford that shot 7-22 and turned the ball over against Chicago. Mike Dunleavy is not a good defender so Crawford should wisely look to exploit him. I use the word wisely to refer to his shot selection, he needs to take the right shots.
Lets take a look at the starting lineups:
The Indiana Pacers
YOUR NEW YORK KNICKS!!!!!!
AT POINT GUARD, STEPHON MARBURY
AT SHOOTING GUARD, JAMAL CRAWFORD
AT SMALL FORWARD, QUENTIN RICHARDSON
AT POWER FORWARD, ZACH RANDOLPH
AT CENTER, EDDY CURRY
What do the Knicks need to do to win?
- Attack!!!! Indiana is the 4th worst team defensively. Knicks need to attack and score.
- Improve effort on defense: Pacers are 6th best team offensively, Knicks need to slow them down and contest every shot.
- Box Out!!!! Pacers are the best rebounding team in the league, Knicks are ranked 16th.
- Danger!!!! Watch Granger!!!! Danny Granger is averaging over 17points a game leading the Pacers.
- Hurry!!! Get it to Curry!!! Don't worry when Jeff Foster is in the game, if Eddy gets good positioning he should be able to score all night. Foster is a great rebounder, not a great defender.
Stephon Marbury will make his return but he will not be getting his normal minutes. It will take him a week to get back into his rythm. Tinsley has been doing an excellent job of finding his teammates and he had a rare 26 points against Miami. Whether its Marbury, Crawford, or Mardy Collins, whoevers on Tinsley cant let him score 26 points. Thats not his game and only poor defense can allow someone whos not a big scorer to score that much. Jason Williams and Miami are having problems just like the Knicks.
Jamal Crawford will see some minutes at the point guard spot but he will probably be matched up with Dunleavy for much of the game. Dunleavy is a tall shooting guard who can shoot very well. Crawford needs to get up on him and contest every single one of his shots.
Quentin Richardson will have a tough matchup against the younger, quicker Danny Granger. Q's been having alot of problems with his shot so he needs to look to contribute mainly by playing defense and rebounding.
Zach Randolph will also have a tough matchup against the quicker and more athletic Jermaine O'Neal. They say in boxing that styles make fights. The 2 different styles of these basketball players will not make for an interesting matchup, Jermaine being taller and a shotblocker should not have problems with the slower Z-Bo.
Eddy Curry needs to come out the same way he did against the Nets, looking to attack. When he positions himself the way he needs to, he is almost unstoppable. Curry should look to take it right at Foster who is not as strong. Jermaine O'Neal might get switched onto Curry. If this happens then the Knicks should go to Zach more.
The Pacers have a good bench which features Troy Murphy, Shawne Williams, Marquis Daniels, and David Harrison. They can bring scoring, defense, and rebounding off the bench. The Knicks bench has problems offensively but they know someting about defending and rebounding too.
This will be a tough game against the high-scoring Indiana Pacers, but if the Knicks stick to my gameplan maybe they can come up with a win. There is a rumor that this game might be boycotted by the fans. One way or another, it will be a good game to watch. Im Jazzy Jeff and thanks for joining me for my pregame show. Enjoy the game, thats if your not boycotting it.