New York Knicks (25-14, 11-8 away) at Boston Celtics (20-21, 13-8 home)
When: Thursday 24th January, 2013 8PM EST
Where: TD Garden
Line: New York -1.0, O/U: 0.0
The rematch we’ve all been waiting for.
On Thursday night the Knicks will take on the Celtics in a must watch game, as we’ll see round two of the Carmelo Anthony vs Kevin Garnett feud, despite Melo having “no problem” with KG.
Both teams have been struggling as of late, with New York losing four of their past six games, while Boston will look to snap a four-game losing streak when they host the Knicks.
Obviously all focus will be on the two star forwards, but don’t expect too much. During the infamous game earlier this month, Anthony kept switching onto Garnett when he set screens, which I don’t think we’ll see much of during Thursday’s encounter. Tyson Chandler will have the defensive assignment of stopping Garnett from scoring, and Anthony will attempt to prevent Paul Pierce from beating them again.
Key matchup: Two of the best young defenders in the league are expected to face each other in this contest, Avery Bradley and Iman Shumpert. Both recently have returned from serious injuries, and will play significant roles in the outcome of this game. Neither will be relied on offensively, but whoever causes the biggest impact on the defensive end and creates opportunities off turnovers for their side will win the battle, and potentially the game for their team.
Prediction: Definitely expect the Celtics to come out and play a physical game in front of their home crowd, though they won’t be able to keep up with the Knicks’ offense, losing to a determined Carmelo Anthony in another close thriller.
Knicks 93 – Celtics 89
Stay tuned to Empire Writes Back, as we’ll be hosting a live blog during the rivalry game.