NEW YORK - After trading runs for the majority of the first quarter, the Boston Celtics fell behind the New York Knicks, who hit a barrage of threes in the second quarter, and trailed 72-53 heading into halftime at Madison Square Garden.
Carmelo Anthony led the attack, scoring 19 points in the half and J.R. Smith scored 21 off the bench, including 7-of-9 threes. New York shot a sizzling 63.4 percent from the field (26-for-41) and 66.7 percent from three-point range (14-for-21).
Boston opened the game on an 8-2 run, but New York would answer with an 11-1 run to take a 13-9 game. After the Celtics went on a 6-0 run to take back the lead, 17-13, the Knicks closed out the period with a 19-9 run to take a 32-26 lead after one. New York scored the first eight points in the second and held Boston scoreless through the 8:54 mark. In the period, the Knicks made 11 three pointers in the quarter and outscored the Celts, 40-27.
Avery Bradley scored 14 and Paul Pierce had 12 points to lead Boston, which shot 54.3 percent from the floor. Rajon Rondo had 11 points and nine assists. Boston's bench was outscored 39-0 and the C's were out-rebounded 20-13.