This piece is an excerpt of an article I wrote under yet another pseudonym for BallerMindFrame.com. To read that version, click here.
Bernie Williams is playing the national anthem. And it makes me yearn for the silky smooth stylings of Jerry Stackhouse.
8:39 Refs learned from a testy Game 1, are calling the game incredibly tight.
5:45 Walt “Clyde” Frazier on the call for MSG Network: “He’s a good bad shot shooter.” Who do you think?
All the time: People confuse Kenyon Martin and Carmelo from a distance.
2:57 Jordan Crawford for 3. Boston bench’s first field goal of the series. Fifteen all.
1:55 Pierce gets away with travel, Terry hits a 3. 20-15 Celtics.
1:39 Melo (and ref) answers on backdoor feed from KMart. And-1 dunk (and makeup call).
0:00 JR Smith splashes a 36-footer off a Pierce turnover. 26-20 Knicks.
11:18 Knicks going with their no-bigs lineup: Kidd-JR-Novak-Copeland-Melo … whoops, never mind. That’s Kenyon Martin.
7:52 Hey, no fair. That guy’s not on the Celtics! Oh wait, it’s just Jason Terry. Knocks down a 3 to cap an 11-0 run. Clyde: “A little more pep in the Celtics’ step.” I feel for anyone who’s never had the opportunity to hear Clyde call a game. 31-27 Celtics.
5:12 “KG sucks” chant booming through the Garden after a blocking call and a standard KG complaint. Or what MSG’s Mike Breen calls “a derisive chant.”
Halftime: MSG interviewing Spike Lee at half time, who refers to his shoes as “orange and blue (long pause) joints.” 48-42 Celtics.
9:54 Shumpert opens the second half with two 3s off Prigioni assists to tie the game at 48. Knicks fans have really gotten behind Prigioni, and with good reason. He always makes the right play and delivers timely passes right where teammates want ‘em.
8:13 Tyson Chandler (remember him?!) and-1 from a Prigioni feed. His first field goal of the series, followed by a monstrous block.
4:45 Garnett misses a long jumper. Boston starting the quarter 1 of 11, reminiscent of Game 1’s ugly 4th quarter.
2:56 Knicks timeout. Doc’s whispering something into Jordan Crawford’s ear. My guess: “… and when the other team has the ball, we try to stop them. It’s called defense.”
0:50 Clyde: “JR very loosey goosey tonight, tantalizing with the jumper.” Fadeaway. Largest lead of the night for the Knicks, 72-57.
9:46 Pierce rattles home a 3, then Crawford pulls up and pops with Novak on him to get the Celtics back into the game, already with as many 4th quarter points as in Game 1. 76-67 Knicks.
8:50 Melo pulls up. After a slow start (3 of 12), he’s hit 7 of his last 8.
8:40 The Garden crowd still thinks KG sucks.
7:00 Breen: “Block by (pauses to make sure it’s not Carmelo) Kenyon Martin!
6:09 Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Suck My Kiss” is pretty awesome highlight/bump music for basketball, especially when replaying a JR Smith oop-slam. 82-69 Knicks.
4:14 Doc Rivers subs Pierce out, effectively conceding the game at 85-69.
0:39 In perhaps the most unlikely play of the night, Steve Novak dribbles into a shot.
In a fashion similar to Game 1, this game was tight, chippy and relatively exciting until the Celtics melted down, tying an NBA-record low with 23 points in the second half. It’s hard to imagine such a veteran-laden team would have as much trouble focusing for the required 48 minutes of playoff basketball. More likely, the Celtics just don’t have the offensive firepower to hang with the Knicks—or most playoff teams, for that matter.