Pabable? Pablable? Pablobable? Whatever. Pablo Prigioni practiced with the Knicks today and is probable to play Tuesday night against the Celtics after missing Game 1 with a sprained right ankle. This is excellent news. Pablo's return allows the Knicks to send out their preferred two-point-guard lineups all night if they please (they missed that through the whole second quarter in Game 1), and it should bolster the shooting, passing, and perimeter defense of that first unit.
On that note: Match-ups are going to change a bit with Pablo replacing Chris Copeland in the starting lineup. In a rare display of early lineup transparency, Mike Woodson announced his intention to start Pablo against Avery Bradley, Iman Shumpert against Jeff Green, and Raymond Felton against Paul Pierce in Game 2. The first two things make perfect sense to me-- the pesky Pablo on a shaky ball-handler, the long-armed but screen-troubled Shump on a face-up driver-- while the last thing might be a little scary.
Pierce posted up constantly on Saturday, forcing some double teams that led to open shots. That's likely to happen even more with Pierce guarded by a little penguin, but it makes sense to me in a weird way. If the Knicks are going to double that post-up no matter what, better to have Felton manning that double team than trying to scramble and close out on the weak side. It's hiding him, in a way. With this arrangement, it'll be Pablo and Shump working the passing lanes and corner shooters, which might work out all right. I also have a strange amount of faith in Ray's ability to bother Pierce. He helped force a lot of turnovers in Game 1 with his quick hands and impeccable timing against entry passes. In short: I don't think that set-up-- even with mismatches-- is a downgrade defensively, and I expect the offense to flow much better with Pablo involved. Also, the Knicks switch everything anyway. Also, that's just the starting lineup. J.R. Smith'll be in there to mix things up within a few minutes.
Also via that John Schuhmann link, you can expect some rotation changes from the Celtics as well. The Knicks' pick-and-roll woke up when Boston rested either Brandon Bass or Kevin Garnett on Saturday, and Doc Rivers might try to alleviate that issue by adding Chris Wilcox or Shavlik Randolph into the rotation. He also expressed an intention to lean harder on Jordan Crawford, who didn't do much in his 11 Game 1 minutes. I don't want to jinx anything, but neither of those developments upsets me in the slightest.
So, good stuff. Pablo should be back. With luck, the Tyson Chandler who actually defends and rebounds and gets to the rim and stuff will be back as well and we'll see something close to a complete Knicks experience.