Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Pregame: The crawl to Game 2
By Chris Forsberg
NEW YORK -- Basketball, finally.
While the Boston Celtics admit there are far worse cities to be stranded in than New York, the 72-hour crawl to the start of Game 2 has been arduous, particularly as they've been dwelling on a sloppy Game 1 loss. And after what amounts to three straight days of trying to correct all its errors from Saturday afternoon's defeat, Boston is relieved to get back on the court Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden.
"Especially on the road, you'd rather get right back at it," admitted Rivers. "You just feel like you're sitting around the room and doing things like that, but obviously being in New York helps in some ways. It's not a bad city to hang out in and go have dinner. So I think we'll be ready."
For the Knicks, Pablo Prigioni is back in the starting lineup after sitting out Game 1. How does that change things for Boston?
"Well, it just gives them another decision-maker. I mean, he's brilliant," said Rivers. "He's another Jason Kidd-ish type guy and so it just gives them another smart player on the floor and another guy that can create plays, and that makes them really good. It's no coincidence that when he's in the lineup they play better, because they have a lot of IQ on the floor at the same time."
The Celtics are hoping that a somewhat undersized backcourt of Prigioni and Raymond Felton allows Boston to take advantage at the 2-guard spot by getting Paul Pierce the ball near the post.
"We're going to attack whoever guards Paul," said Rivers. "I'm sure [Knicks coach Mike Woodson is] thinking the same thing. It doesn't matter who's guarding Paul, Paul's going to get the ball, he's going to get it in the post, they're going to come trap. Hopefully there's an advantage there."