Carmelo Anthony recorded his second career triple double to lead the New York Knicks past the division rival Boston Celtics 118-110 Tuesday night. The win put the Knicks solely in control of the No. 7 seed in the Eastern conference.
Anthony finished with 35 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, out dueling Celtics forward Paul Pierce, who led all scorers with 43 points. Sharpshooter Steve Novak had 25 points in 27 minutes, burying 8 of 10 three-pointers. Knicks swingman J.R. Smith was also deadly from beyond the arc, hitting seven threes for 25 points off the bench. The Knicks finished 19-32 from long range in the victory.
Ray Allen was out again for the Celtics with an ankle injury. He missed his fifth consecutive game after saying he was good-to-go after the team’s Tuesday morning shootaround. There is no word on his availability for Wednesday’s contest against the Orlando Magic.
The Knicks gained ground on the Celtics in the Atlantic Division, trimming Boston’s lead to 3.5 games. The Celtics have taken the Atlantic Division title the last four years.
New York has a favorable schedule remaining, with three of their five games coming against the New Jersey Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers and Charlotte Bobcats. The Knicks are also expected to get forward Amare Stoudemire back late this week. The former all-star has missed the teams previous 12 games with a back injury. Point guard Jeremy Lin is not expected back until possibly the second round of the playoffs( if the Knicks advance) after undergoing surgery for a torn meniscus.
The Celtics had won six of their last seven before Tuesday’s loss.