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(Sunday, March 31st)
Final Score: New York 108, Boston 89
New York, NY (Sports Network) - Carmelo Anthony scored 24 points and grabbed 10 rebounds and Chris Copeland had 22 points and nailed three 3-pointers as the New York Knicks downed the Boston Celtics, 108-89, to win the season series for the first time since 2003-04.
J.R. Smith, who recently became the first player to have three straight 30- point performances off the bench since Milwaukee's Ricky Pierce (1990), finished with 15 points and 12 boards for the Knicks, who have won eight straight following a four-game losing skid.
Raymond Felton chipped in 18 points, while Iman Shumpert and Steve Novak each netted 10 in the victory.
"It was a great month, now we have got to figure out April." New York coach Mike Woodson said of his team's 12-6 mark in March.
Paul Pierce had 27 points to go along with 15 rebounds for the Celtics, who had a two-game winning streak come to an end and have lost six of their last eight games overall. Jeff Green led all players with 27 points in defeat.
Trailing by 17 points at halftime, and 19 just minutes into the third, the Celtics cut the deficit to 11 twice. Green helped on both occasions, as the final came on a running hook shot with 6:06 to play in the third to make it 75-64.
The Knicks, though, closed the quarter on a 11-5 swing to stay ahead comfortably 86-69 to head into the fourth.
Boston's deficit quickly grew to 24 points as Anthony hit a jumper around the midway point which made it 97-73. The Celtics didn't get any closer than 16 the rest of the contest, as the Knicks eased to the victory.
"Every game we play now is important in terms of us staying at the top of our division and trying to secure that second spot if we can," Woodson added, "and I think the guys know that."
Boston shot 13-of-35 in the second half, including a mere 3-of-15 from behind the arc.
New York led after one quarter 28-23 and extended its edge to 48-34 around the midway point of the second before holding a convincing 65-48 edge at the break.
Much of the home team's success in the first half related to some key shooting from behind the arc, as the Knicks connect on 11-of-16 attempts. Boston didn't have much of a threat offensively, as Pierce and Green accounted for 31 points while the rest of the squad combined for 17.
"I thought they had the spirit of the pass the entire night," Boston coach Doc Rivers said. "I thought they did a great job, and it was anybody who (touched the ball)."
New York improved to 27-10 at home this season ... The Knicks last won eight games in a row from Nov. 28 through Dec. 12, 2010 ... Boston center Kevin Garnett missed his fifth straight game with a nagging left ankle injury ... New York's Tyson Chandler, who could return Tuesday for a tilt against Miami, has missed 10 consecutive games due to a bulging disc in his neck ... Boston fell to New York on Tuesday, 100-85.
03/31 22:57:57 ET
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