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While the New York Knicks will be happy with the 106-104 victory over the Boston Celtics in the season-opener, two key injuries will certainly help keep the win in perspective. According to Frank Isola of the New York Daily News, both Iman Shumpert and Jared Jeffries will miss time following injuries suffered in the victory:
@FisolaNYDN: Iman Shumpert out 2 to 4 weeks according to Knicks. Jared Jeffries out 1 to 2 weeks.
The loss of Shumpert will weaken an already depleted New York backcourt. The rookie guard from Georgia Tech showed some glimpses of his potential, scoring 11 points before injuring his knee late in the third quarter.
Jeffries, who provides a solid defensive presence off the bench for the Knicks, hurt his calf in the second half of the 106-104 win. With Jeffries sidelined, both Josh Harrellson and Renaldo Balkman will see their playing time increase in the next couple of weeks.
With the acquisition of Tyson Chandler and the congested NBA schedule caused by the lockout, the New York Knicks believe this season could mark their return to the Eastern Conference elite. In order to earn that type of respect, the Knicks know that they need to step up their physicality to beat the likes of the Boston Celtics, Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls.
After a gutty performance down the stretch, which saw the Knicks pick up key stops in the final two minutes of their 106-104 win, New York showed its ready to ignite the rivalry with the Celtics. Following a miss by Kevin Garnett at the buzzer, which would have sent the game to overtime, Garnett and Bill Walker exchanged some words and shoves:
Following a season in which they often struggled to win games down the stretch, the Knicks will be pleased with this victory in the season-opener. After a tense playoff series last season, and the physicality of the matchup in the season-opener, it seems that the Knicks vs. Celtics rivalry could be back.
All it took was 48 minutes of basketball to remind everyone how great the NBA can be. In the first game of the lockout-delayed 2011-2012 season, the New York Knicks showed some of the resolve that they lacked at times last season, as they rallied from an eight-point fourth quarter deficit to pull out the 106-104 victory.
After battling foul trouble throughout the first three quarters, Carmelo Anthony was simply spectacular in leading the Knicks to victory. Anthony netted a game-high 37 points on 10/17 shooting and grabbed eight rebounds for the Knicks. Anthony hit what proved to be the game-winning free-throws with just 16.5 seconds left and was unguardable down the stretch.
Amare Stoudemire and Toney Douglas complimented Anthony on the offensive end for the Knicks. Stoudemire finished with 21 points on 8/11 shooting and pulled down six boards. Douglas delivered a strong performance from the perimeter, netting 19 points and dishing out a team-high four assists. The Knicks did receive some bad news when Iman Shumpert sprained his MCL late in the third quarter. Shumpert scored 11 points in his NBA debut.
With backcourt depth already an issue for the New York Knicks, an injury to any member of their rotation was something they couldn't afford. Unfortunately, according to Howard Beck of the New York Times, rookie guard Iman Shumpert suffered a strained MCL in the third quarter:
@HowardBeckNYT: Shumpert has a sprained MCL and will not return today
Shumpert provided a nice spark off the bench for the Knicks, as his aggressive play was important with Carmelo Anthony and Toney Douglas in foul trouble in the opening three quarters. Although his shot wasn't falling, Shumpert was able to score 11 points off the bench and was showing some of the promise that made him a first round pick coming out of Georgia Tech.
With this injury, the Knicks will need Landry Fields and Bill Walker to provide some consistency on the offensive end of the court. Toney Douglas has shot the ball well from the field, and he will need to continue to be a scoring threat to make up for the absence of Shumpert.
Stay tuned to SB Nation NBA for the latest on Shumpert and all of the Christmas Day action.
After seemingly scoring at will in the opening half against the Boston Celtics, the New York Knicks struggled to find any offensive rhythm in the third quarter. With numerous turnovers and bad shots plaguing the Knicks, the Celtics have overcome a 10-point halftime deficit to take an 87-79 advantage heading into the final quarter.
Early foul trouble to Carmelo Anthony seemed to cause the Knicks to struggle offensively, as they couldn't find a consistent scorer with Anthony on the bench. Through three quarters, Anthony leads the Knicks with 20 points on 6/12 shooting from the field.
Amare Stoudemire and Toney Douglas have also provided some consistency on the offensive end for the Knicks. Stoudemire has shot 7/10 from the field through three quarters, scoring 17 points and pulling down five boards. Douglas has been the lone consistent scoring threat from the perimeter, netting 16 points.
Although he has struggled with his shot, hitting just 3/13 attempts, Iman Shumpert has scored 11 points. Unfortunately, Shumpert appeared to suffer an injury late in the third quarter and had to be helped off the court.
Stay tuned to SB Nation NBA for all your Christmas Day news and notes from around the league.
Despite a shortened training camp and limited time spent together with a new roster, the New York Knicks delivered an impressive performance in the opening half against the Boston Celtics, as they have jumped out to a 62-52 lead in this Christmas Day showdown.
The trio of Carmelo Anthony, Amare Stoudemire and Toney Douglas proved particularly difficult for the Celtics to slowdown, with all three scoring in double-digits in the opening half. In his role as a point-forward for the Knicks, Anthony put his versatile game on full display, scoring 17 points, pulling down 8 boards and dishing out 2 assists.
Stoudemire was nearly flawless on the offensive end in the opening half, scoring 12 points on 5/6 shooting from the field. The Knicks PF also showed that he was hard at work improving his game in the offseason, as he knocked down both his attempts from behind the arc.
Douglas, who often played off the ball in a scoring guard role, provided a key third scoring option in the opening 24 minutes. Douglas scored 11 points on 5/8 shooting and dished out two assists for the Knicks.
Stay tuned to SB Nation NBA for all your coverage on Christmas Day.
The New York Knicks received a nice Christmas Day gift Sunday, as Boston Celtics star forward Paul Pierce will not play in the NBA-season opener at Madison Square Garden (noon on TNT). Pierce missed most of training camp with a bruised right heel and will be replaced by Sasha Pavlovic. SB Nation Boston's believes that Marquis Daniel will come off the bench.
The Knicks are hoping to get some slight revenge on the Celtics, who knocked New York out of the 2011 NBA playoffs with a four-game sweep. After the game, the Knicks will head to the West Coast for a three-game swing against the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers and Sacromento Kings, respectively.
For more on these two teams, visit the Knicks blog Posting And Toasting and CelticsBlog. SB Nation New York ran a four-part season preview of the 2011-12 New York Knicks, if you missed it here's a link to each part.
The New York Knicks tipoff their 2011-12 campaign Sunday on Christmas Day (noon on TNT) against the visiting Boston Celtics.