The New York Knicks are in a heck of a lot of trouble, and it didn’t take long to find themselves there. They have now lost three of their last four games in the playoffs, and that includes dropping Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Indiana Pacers. Now, the two are set to renew ties for Game 2 at Madison Square Garden in what could ultimately be a pivotal game in this series.
The key for the Knicks is going to be getting Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith going. These two men have been horrid shooters from the field over the course of these playoffs, shooting 37.8 and 36.4 percent respectively. They’re getting their points, as they are averaging 44.4 points per game between them this year, but they also taking away the flow of Head Coach Mike Woodson’s offense.
For the Pacers, the key to winning in NBA betting action is going to be playing stout defense on these two men once again. The Indiana defense was bothered by the Atlanta Hawks at times in the opening round of the playoffs, but for the most part, the team has done the job. The Pacers have allowed just an average of 90.1 points per game here in the second season, and that is right around the 90.7 points per game that they allowed in the regular season. Indiana was ranked first in the Eastern Conference in scoring defense, shooting defense (42.0%), and three-point shooting defense (32.7%) this season.
Not surprisingly, the ‘total’ in NBA betting action in Game 2 of this series is just 183, as the oddsmakers are expecting another one of these low scoring defensive games. The Knicks scored just 19 points in both the second and third quarters of Game 1.
The linesmakers have installed New York as a six-point favorite to level this series.