City Sports Report

Knicks lose to Celtics Despite 30 from Stoudemire by Derrel “Jazz” Johnson

In their Madison Square Garden home debut, The New York Knicks played well in a preseason loss to the Boston Celtics 104-101. Amar’e Stoudemire scored 30 points, blocked 2 shots and pulled 5 rebounds in the first three quarters but did not play in the fourth. It was a high energy preseason game that had the feel of a regular season game, with Paul Pierce, celebrating his 33rd birthday, making the game-winning basket with eight seconds left against Knick reserves to seal the victory.  Pierce also shares a birthday with coach Glenn “Doc” Rivers and Jermaine O’Neal.

Ray Allen led the Celtics with 24 points, while Pierce scored 20. Second-round draft pick Luke Harangody had an impressive 16 points and 12 rebounds for the Celtics. For the Knicks, Wilson Chandler continues to get off to quick starts, scoring 8 points in the first quarter, on his way to finish with 13. Two other Knicks finished in double figures, with both Bill Walker and Danilo Gallinari scoring 11 points.

The game saw four technical fouls and the ejection of Kevin Garnett in a 16-second period. This highlights the NBA’s crack down on what it sees as behavior that will not be tolerated. Fines for technicals have been doubled, and, with overt gestures being a point of emphasis, we may get used to seeing more technicals dished out this season.  When Stoudemire was asked about the changes, he said it may take a while to get used to, but feels that it is better for the game.

At the end of the fourth quarter, the crowd erupted into a “We want Shaq” chant, but Shaquille O’Neal, or, as he will come to be known in Boston, The Big Shamock, was in street clothes for the night, resting a hip injury.

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