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Sports

May 3, 2013

Knicks need to win on road to avoid Game 7

BOSTON (AP) — The Boston Celtics are looking across town for inspiration as they attempt to become the first NBA team to rally from an 0-3 deficit to win a playoff series.

Needing to win four straight games to stay alive in the playoffs, Celtics coach Doc Rivers talked to his team about the Red Sox and their comeback against the New York Yankees in the 2004 AL championship series. Celtics guard Jason Terry invoked former Red Sox first baseman Kevin Millar and said, “If we win this next game, then anything’s possible.”

“We just know every game for us is a Game 7,” Terry said after beating the New York Knicks 92-86 on Wednesday night to cut their deficit in the best-of-seven series to 3-2. “It’s all about being resilient. Do you pack up your things and go home or do you want to play another day? You got guys like Kevin (Garnett) and Paul (Pierce) who’ve been in a lot of playoff series, and everyone takes a life of its own.

“Obviously being down 3-0 ... we could have folded shop,” Terry said. “Nobody in here is going to quit.”

The Red Sox comeback is legendary in Boston, and not only because it came against the hated Yankees. After losing the first three games of the series — including a 19-8, Game 3 loss at Fenway Park — Millar told anyone who would listen, “Don’t let us win today.”

As Millar predicted, Pedro Martinez pitched Game 5 and Curt Schilling won Game 6 and then, “Game 7, anything can happen.” The Red Sox beat the Yankees and went on to sweep St. Louis to win the World Series.

“We’re well aware of what happened” with the Red Sox, said Terry, who has only been with the Celtics one season. “If this happens, it’ll be very similar. I’m very familiar with what they did and the history they made. Is that a motivating factor for us? It helps, but that alone is not going to win the series for us.”

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