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U.S. Sports Desk, Apr 24 (EFE).- Carmelo Anthony scored 34 points and J.R. Smith added 19 off the bench as the New York Knicks topped the Boston Celtics 87-71 to grab a 2-0 lead in their first-round playoff series.
The Celtics' defense had no answer for Anthony, who shot 11-of-24 from the field, including 2-of-4 from three-point range Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden. The star forward also got to the free-throw line at will, making 10-of-11 from the charity stripe.
J.R. Smith, who was named winner of this season's Sixth Man of the Year Award, also played a key role by making seven of his 15 field-goal attempts.
In the decisive third quarter, the Knicks used their stifling defense to outscore the Celtics 32-11 and turn a six-point halftime deficit into a 15-point lead.
The Celtics, who were led by Paul Pierce's 18 points, six rebounds and six assists, will host Game 3 Friday night at the TD Bank Garden, the first contest there since last week's deadly bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
In other playoff action Tuesday night, the defending champion Miami Heat took a 2-0 series lead over the Milwaukee Bucks with a 98-86 victory.
In the last game of the night, the Golden State Warriors used an offensive outburst to defeat the Denver Nuggets 131-117 and tie that series at 1-1.