The Knicks will look to get their first win of the season when they host the Boston Celtics at the Madison Square Garden on Sunday.
The Knicks faced the San Antonio Spurs in their opening game and fell to a 120-11 loss. It was a competitive game till the very end before Spurs went on a run in the fourth quarter to seal it. Julius Randle starred in his first game for the franchise with 25 points, 6 assists, and 11 rebounds. In their second game, the Knicks played neighbors Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Centre.
They managed to keep it competitive again but succumbed to a 113-109 loss in the end. Allonzo Trier top-scored for the Knicks in this one with 22 points off the bench. Five other players were in double figures, which is a good sign for coach David Fizdale. The Knicks took the lead with three minutes to go, and they were leading 109-106 after R. J. Barrett made a contested layup. However, Kyrie Irving closed out the game for the Nets and left the Knicks still wanting their first win. Julius Randle had the chance to tie the game, but he lost the ball in the play.
Rookie Barrett has impressed in the first two games, averaging 18.5 points already. Bobby Portis and Julius Randle were acquired in the summer, and they have contributed heavily as well. Fizdale will draw plenty of positive from the Nets game, as the Knicks were very close to the win.
The Boston Celtics got their first win of the season when they beat the Toronto Raptors 112-106. Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown both scored 25 points to lead the Celtics to the victory. Kemba Walker had 22 points, and Boston overturned a deficit in the fourth quarter to get the win. It was a much-needed result after Philadelphia beat them in the first game. The 76ers thoroughly dominated that contest to claim a 107-93 win.
Boston’s starters are playing well, but their bench looks really thin this season. Marcus Smart is the only reliable man on it, and he scored 10 points against Toronto. Enes Kanter suffered an injury, and he was absent against the Raptors. Daniel Theis started in his absence to form a very young starting lineup. Kanter will not return against the Knicks, and he will be evaluated after the game.
Unlike last season, Boston are not one of the favorites to win the Eastern Conference. The likes of Philadelphia and Milwaukee are ahead of them as of now. Brad Stevens will welcome this situation, and it will give him an opportunity to bring some stability to the franchise.
New York Knicks vs Boston Celtics Prediction
The Celtics will be the favorites to spoil the Knicks’ first home game and claim the win. It will be a low-scoring game relatively, and the total points should be Under 226.5. But the Celtics will have enough to get the win, and it will be by a margin of more than ten points.