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The Knicks are in serious trouble.  Amare Stoudemire is out for the rest of the regular season, Carmelo Anthony is back in New York getting his troublesome knee drained, and they've just dropped the first 3 of a 5 game west coast trip.  Boston is now only 3.5 games behind NY for the division lead.  At this point it looks as if the Nets (2.5 ahead of the Celtics) may actually be a bigger obstacle for the C's to overcome than the Knicks, although Brooklyn is also about to head out on an 8 game road  trip.  Here's what's left on each team's schedule, with projected wins and losses.

Knicks (38-25) remaining schedule:
64 Sun, Mar 17, 2013 @ Los Angeles Clippers L
65 Mon, Mar 18, 2013 @ Utah Jazz L
66 Wed, Mar 20, 2013 Orlando Magic W
67 Fri, Mar 22, 2013 @ Toronto Raptors W
68 Sat, Mar 23, 2013 Toronto Raptors W
69 Tue, Mar 26, 2013 @ Boston Celtics L
70 Wed, Mar 27, 2013 Memphis Grizzlies L
71 Fri, Mar 29, 2013 Charlotte Bobcats W
72 Sun, Mar 31, 2013 Boston Celtics L
73 Tue, Apr 2, 2013 @ Miami Heat L
74 Wed, Apr 3, 2013 @ Atlanta Hawks L
75 Fri, Apr 5, 2013 Milwaukee Bucks W
76 Sun, Apr 7, 2013 @ Oklahoma City Thunder L
77 Tue, Apr 9, 2013 Washington Wizards W
78 Thu, Apr 11, 2013 @ Chicago Bulls L
79 Fri, Apr 12, 2013 @ Cleveland Cavaliers W
80 Sun, Apr 14, 2013 Indiana Pacers L
81 Mon, Apr 15, 2013 @ Charlotte Bobcats W
82 Wed, Apr 17, 2013 Atlanta Hawks W
Final record: 47-35

Nets (38-27) remaining schedule:
66 Sun, Mar 17, 2013 Atlanta Hawks W
67 Mon, Mar 18, 2013 @ Detroit Pistons W
68 Wed, Mar 20, 2013 @ Dallas Mavericks L
69 Sat, Mar 23, 2013 @ Los Angeles Clippers L
70 Sun, Mar 24, 2013 @ Phoenix Suns W
71 Wed, Mar 27, 2013 @ Portland Trail Blazers L
72 Fri, Mar 29, 2013 @ Denver Nuggets L
73 Sat, Mar 30, 2013 @ Utah Jazz L
74 Wed, Apr 3, 2013 @ Cleveland Cavaliers W
75 Thu, Apr 4, 2013 Chicago Bulls L
76 Sat, Apr 6, 2013 Charlotte Bobcats W
77 Tue, Apr 9, 2013 Philadelphia 76ers W
78 Wed, Apr 10, 2013 @ Boston Celtics L
79 Fri, Apr 12, 2013 @ Indiana Pacers L
80 Sun, Apr 14, 2013 @ Toronto Raptors W
81 Mon, Apr 15, 2013 Washington Wizards W
82 Wed, Apr 17, 2013 Detroit Pistons W
Final record: 47-35

Celtics (35-29) remaining schedule:
65 Sat, Mar 16, 2013 Charlotte Bobcats W
66 Mon, Mar 18, 2013 Miami Heat L
67 Wed, Mar 20, 2013 @ New Orleans Hornets W
68 Fri, Mar 22, 2013 @ Dallas Mavericks L
69 Sat, Mar 23, 2013 @ Memphis Grizzlies L
70 Tue, Mar 26, 2013 New York Knicks W
71 Wed, Mar 27, 2013 @ Cleveland Cavaliers W
72 Fri, Mar 29, 2013 Atlanta Hawks W
73 Sun, Mar 31, 2013 @ New York Knicks W
74 Mon, Apr 1, 2013 @ Minnesota Timberwolves W
75 Wed, Apr 3, 2013 Detroit Pistons L
76 Fri, Apr 5, 2013 Cleveland Cavaliers W
77 Sun, Apr 7, 2013 Washington Wizards W
78 Wed, Apr 10, 2013 Brooklyn Nets W
79 Fri, Apr 12, 2013 @ Miami Heat L
80 Sat, Apr 13, 2013 @ Orlando Magic W
81 Tue, Apr 16, 2013 Indiana Pacers W
82 Wed, Apr 17, 2013 @ Toronto Raptors W
Final record: 48-34

Analysis: I'd feel a lot more comfortable about Boston's chances at 49-33, but another 14-4 stretch seems like too much to ask.  I had to give the Nets a home loss to the Bulls in order to keep them at just 47 wins (the Celtics will almost definitely lose a tiebreaker to Brooklyn because of their far worse conference record).  Boston could easily make up for it by beating the Heat on Monday, but on the other hand it seems just as likely they could lose again to the Bobcats.  And before you start complaining about the "L" next to the Detroit game on April 3rd, take a peak at the two teams' recent history, the Pistons own the Celtics lately.  The key point here is that Boston must win all 3 of the remaining head to head contests with New York (2) and Brooklyn (1).  All in all, when you look at the game by game breakdown, a 6th consecutive division title definitely appears to be within reach.

Follow Mark on twitter @LucidSportsFan

Mark Vandeusen 3/15/2013 09:09:00 AM Edit
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