Celtics put a sleeper hold on Knicks, 110-94

Celtics put a sleeper hold on Knicks, 110-94

NEW YORK -- One of the many nicknames given to New York is that it's the city that never sleeps.
You wouldn't have known that Sunday by the quiet-as-a-library crowd at the TD Garden that bore witness to Boston's dominant performance. Even the fans at Madison Square Garden with the usually-loud thunder sticks were unusually quiet by thunder-stick standards.
Well, give the Celtics some credit.
Unlike their most recent games against bottom-of-the-East clubs like New York, the Celtics certainly didn't sleepwalk over what figured to be an easy pushover.
And because of that, the Celtics had a relatively easy time in leading wire-to-wire in a 110-94 win.
The Celtics (50-27) hit the 50-win plateau for the first time under fourth-year coach Brad Stevens, and for the first time as a franchise since they won 56 games in 2010-11.
Meanwhile, New York (29-48) has five games left before this season is finally over.
For one Knicks player, the season has reportedly already ended. Reports indicate Derrick Rose has a torn meniscus and will be out for the rest of the season.
In addition to Rose, the Knicks were also without Carmelo Anthony (back) and Lance Thomas (hip).
The Celtics are the last team that wants to hear about dealing with injuries and illnesses, not with Boston playing a cut-and-paste lineup most games . . . including Sunday's, with Avery Bradley (stomach flu) still out of the lineup.
His replacement was Jaylen Brown.
The 6-foot-7 rookie was back on the bench about a minute into his starting assignment but soon himself back on the floor and proved to be one of the keys to Boston winning for the sixth time in their last seven games.
And now the Celtics will have a few days to prepare for a Wednesday night matchup against Cleveland in what will be one of the most anticipated games on the schedule, a game that will go far in determining whether Boston or Cleveland will be the top seed in the East this season.

NBCSB Breakfast pod: How Jayson Tatum compares to Paul Pierce

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NBCSB Breakfast pod: How Jayson Tatum compares to Paul Pierce

1:25 - With half of the Celtics roster on the shelf, we’ve been able to see just how great a scorer Jayson Tatum can be. A. Sherrod Blakely, Mike Girardi and Trenni Kusnierek discuss how Tatum compares to Celtics legend, Paul Pierce.

5:35 - The NFL Competition Committee is giving it their best shot at modifying the ‘catch rule’ and Tom Curran, Kyle Draper and Hardy try to wrap their heads around the proposed changes.

11:02 - The Bruins clinched a playoff berth despite losing to the St. Louis Blues in overtime. Joe Haggerty joins Tom Giles to break down the game, which included another goal by Ryan Donato and a questionable call on a high hit on David Krejci.

Report: Kyrie Irving to undergo knee exam Thursday


Report: Kyrie Irving to undergo knee exam Thursday

The second opinion on Kyrie Irving’s sore left knee will be done on Thursday, according to the Boston Herald's Steve Bulpett.

Irving, who has missed the last four games, is expected to decide between having a surgical procedure performed to help alleviate some of the soreness, or continue to manage it with rest.


During the 2015 NBA Finals, Irving suffered a fractured left kneecap injury which was the beginning of Irving’s left knee issues.

While Irving has had soreness of some form during various stretches of play this season, Celtics coach Brad Stevens has seen him making progress recently.

“That knee is still sore,” Stevens said. “He’s worked really hard to manage it throughout the entire season. He’s had some pretty good days recently. I’m encouraged by the big picture.”

But Stevens has made it clear that he supports Irving getting a second opinion, adding that Irving’s absence is due to the knee being too sore for him to play at a level he’s accustomed to.

“He’s out because of knee soreness, not because we’re choosing to rest him,” Stevens said. “That’s the bottom line. Again, we want him to feel 110 percent. He wants to feel 110 percent. Obviously, we’re fortunate we created a cushion early on in the year with playoffs and everything else. This is not one of those situations where we’re choosing to rest someone; it’s because he has a sore knee.”