I basically made the title for this article just to post this:
Carmelo Anthony is at the center of the NBA world. Will he stay in New York or will he head for free agency after this season? The Boston Celtics face the New York Knicks tonight, and the Celts aren’t very concerned with what Carmelo plans to do after the season.
The Knicks are winning games, fighting to land that last spot in the Eastern Conference playoffs. The Celtics, who should be losing more games, may accidentally win themselves into that same spot. The insertion of Amar’e Stoudemire into the Knicks starting lineup has jump-started the team’s offense (Note: Amar’e will not be in the Knicks lineup tonight), and they are willing themselves to outscore their opponents and hope they play enough defense to steal some victories. Or at least that’s what they will try and do tonight against Boston.
Boston will look to focus on defense against the Knicks, but I think they will get into a shootout before the 2nd half even begins. Not saying that the Celtics can’t win a shootout with the Knicks, but it isn’t the best way for this team to beat the Knickerbockers.
Brandon Bass and Jeff Green will have the unenviable task of guarding ‘Melo. They will get up in his body and try and force him into bad shots. However, he may just hit them anyway. JR Smith and Tim Hardaway Jr. will need to shoot well for the Knicks to have a chance, which is basically every game. No Avery Bradley makes it a bit more difficult, but I expect my boy Chris Babb to play his A game tonight (in six minutes!).
If the jump shots are falling, then the Knicks are a very tough team to beat. They have been on a tear as of late offensively, and I don’t think it will stop versus Boston tonight.
Prediction: Knicks 107, Celtics 101