With the series shifting over to Boston, the New York Knicks go in with all the confidence in the world. They are up 2-0 in this best-of-seven series, and they have held the Boston Celtics under 80 points in both victories at Madison Square Garden.
Realistically, the Celtics are going in thinking they gave both of these games away, rather than the Knicks having won them. Holding the high-scoring Knicks to under 90 points in both games is something to be proud of. No one has scored more than 13 points in either game besides Carmelo Anthony, J.R. Smith and Raymond Felton.
The problem has been that the Celtics offense has disappeared after halftime in both games. Give credit to Mike Woodson and the Knicks defense for making halftime adjustments, but the Celtics have to be blaming themselves as well.
In Game 1 the Celtics took a four point lead into halftime, only to score 25 points in the second half including eight in the fourth quarter. In Game 2 they again led at half, this time by two points. They were only able to muster up 23 second half points and lost by sixteen.
The key here at TD Bank Garden tonight will be to get Kevin Garnett going. He thrives off of the crowd in Boston and he was basically shut down in New York. He is averaging only 10 points and 10 rebounds on 38% shooting from the field in the first two games. He also needs to try and contain Kenyon Martin, who has pulled down eight offensive rebounds in the first two games of the series.
This series is far from over; the Knicks have not played well enough to call it over. The Celtics need to take care of business at home the next two games and anything can happen after that. It all starts with tonight and putting up more than 25 points in the second half would be a great start.