Celtics Take on the Knicks in Tuesday Night NBA Action

Boston Celtics +5.5 at New York Knicks -5.5 Total: 192.5

Seeking a third straight win, the New York Knicks look to get some paybacks fro  two earlier losses to the sputtering Boston Celtics on Tuesday night.  The Knicks are riding a sizziling Carmelo Anthony, who scored 62 points on Friday night and backed that performance up with 35 on Sunday against the Lakers.

Four other Knicks scored in double figures; Raymond Felton with 20, Tyson Chandler scored 13, and bench players Tim Hardaway Jr. and J.R. Smith scored 18 and 16 points each. Spreading the ball around has been part of the plan this year, says coach Mike Woodson.

“Last year we had five guys that averaged in double figures and I’ve always wanted a team where you just didn’t know where it was going to come from,” Woodson said. “And we know Melo’s going to get his, but we need everybody to be a part of the offense and touch the ball and feel good about themselves.”

New York is 17-27 on the season, averaging 96.2 points per game while giving up 99.3. They are 18-26-0 against the spread, with their over/under record 23-21-0. When their opponents have the ball, the Knicks are allowing 46% shooting from the field, including 37% from the three point line. Its defensive rebounding rate off those misses is 76%, and the team is averaging 6 steals and 3.8 blocks per game so far this season. On offense, the Knicks are shooting 44% from the field, including 36% from deep. Their free throw percentage so far this season is 76%, and they have gotten rebounds off their own misses 25% of the time. New York has turned the ball over 12.1 times per game this year, and have seen their shots blocked an average of 4.6 times per game.

Boston is coming off Sunday’s 85-79 loss to Brooklyn, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett’s first game back since getting traded last summer.  Rajon Rondo played a season-high 30 minutes in his fifth game back since returning from a torn ACL. He scored 13 points, eight rebounds and eight assists but also committed six turnovers.

“It’s actually progressing as we thought,” coach Brad Stevens said. “He played more minutes, obviously, and that was by design. … That probably helps him get a better rhythm when he’s in the game. I still think he’s (in) game five of exhibition season, and I think he’ll continue to get better.”

The Celtics are scoring 94.7 points per game so far this season, en route to a 15-31 record overall and a 22-24-0 record against the spread. Boston has given up 98.6 PPG, and have an O/U record of 18-28-0 on the year. On defense, the Celtics have held their opponents to a 45% field goal percentage, 35% from three point land. They are creating 13.9 turnovers per game , and blocking 4.5 shots per game. Their assist to turnover ratio is 1.35. The Celtics are shooting 44% from the field so far this season, with a 33% success rate from beyond the three point line. Their overall rebound percentage is 50%; its offense rebound rate is 26% with the defense collecting 73% of their opponent’s misses. The Celtics are shooting 77% at the free throw line this year.