The first domino to fall this offseason is Paul Pierce’s contract. Until Danny Ainge figures out what he’s doing there, little else matters. As we wait for this decision, we also must face the rest of the offseason, which means it is also rumor season. With that time of year, comes plenty of information floating [...]
In his third year in the league, in which promising players often make brash leaps from benchwarmer to starter, from starter to star, Avery Bradley took a big step back. But his regression might be deceptive. When he returned to the Celtics’ lineup on January the 2nd after two in-season months recovering from offseason shoulder [...]
A long, challenging offseason awaits Danny Ainge this summer. Before he dives in head first, he joined Salk and Holley on WEEI-FM 93.7 to discuss the multitude of decisions facing him this offseason, as well as the progress of Rajon Rondo in his rehab from ACL surgery. A few of the notable highlights from the interview. Ainge [...]
In one way or another, there will be change this offseason in Boston. That process started in the past couple days, with the first piece moving out coming as a name most C’s fans might not be familiar with. Yet, it was Celtics’ assistant general manager Ryan McDonough, one of Danny Ainge’s top lieutenants, who [...]
It was a tough season for the Boston Celtics, and that includes for head coach Doc Rivers. The long-time coach battled to find the right fit for a lot of new pieces that were both underperforming and/or failed to pick up his schemes on both ends of the floor. Naturally, an unfortunate plethora of injuries [...]
It seems like every offseason since 2010 we’ve been through this: a myriad of questions and concerns about the Celtics’ roster that usually involve the possibility of the core of the team being dismantled. As we head into the summer of 2013, we’ve got a whole batch of questions, many of which will be familiar. [...]
Kevin Garnett, PF36 MIN | 6-23 FG | 0-0 FT | 12 REB | 3 AST | 12 PTS | +6 Like Pierce, KG also had an off-shooting night. A really off-shooting night as he went 6-for-23 including some big misses down the stretch. Also like Pierce, he somewhat made up for it by rebounding the basketball and playing tough defense on Andrew Bynum when necessary.
Paul Pierce, SF48 MIN | 7-18 FG | 3-3 FT | 9 REB | 7 AST | 18 PTS | +2 All Star selection curse? Pierce couldn’t hit a shot in the first half and it really didn’t seem to have anything to do with Metta World Peace. He missed wide open jumpers and nailed ones over the artist formerly known as Artest. Still, Pierce made up for his poor shooting performance by filling up the rest of the box score and his ability to avoid getting discouraged when his shot isn’t falling is very underrated.
Jermaine O’Neal, C33 MIN | 1-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 2 PTS | +1 Almost none of JO’s contributions showed up in the box score but he played tough D on two really good bigs when he was in there. Aside from the tough defense, JO continues to show how badly the Celtics can rebound when they face a formidable front court.
Ray Allen, SG40 MIN | 9-20 FG | 2-2 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 22 PTS | 0 Ray drew the tough assignment of having to guard Kobe and provide the offense on an uncharacteristic off night for Pierce and Garnett. He capably defended Kobe in the first half and passably in the second. His offense was still keeping the Celtics in the game late and for that he breaks the BA barrier.
Rajon Rondo, PG45 MIN | 7-13 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 7 AST | 14 PTS | +6 Assists (7) and rebounds (2) were way below average but Rondo had an efficient 14 points including a sprinkling of jump shots. The Kobe Free Safety strategy wasn’t as effective in the first half but Rondo bricked a few jumpers late to really put the crap stamp on this loss.
Chris Wilcox, PF13 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -3 Wilcox provided some energy off the bench but otherwise pretty unspectacular.
Marquis Daniels, SG1 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | 0 He played? (C means “Incomplete”)
Mickael Pietrus, SF18 MIN | 3-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 9 PTS | -4 Pietrus put forth a valiant effort on the defensive end guarding Kobe better than both Ray and Rondo. He also hit a very timely three in the fourth quarter to get the C’s back into the game.
Brandon Bass, PF24 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 8 PTS | -6 Bass had a great game for an average bench player but an average game for the great bench player he is.
E’Twaun Moore, G9 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | -7 8+ minutes and no points. The Celtics needed him in the game for his offense and he had almost none tonight.
Three Things We Saw
The Celtics fought Kobe’s Hero Ball act with running plays and lost– to the Lakers’ size advantage. After seeing Kobe front-rim jumper after jumper only to fail to secure the rebound must have been hard on the Green Team.
Rebounding. Yeah I went there. Tonight, it wasn’t even close. We all expected that but Bynum’s offensive rebounds and Gasol’s defensive rebounds down the stretch really hurt the Celtics. They were expected to lose the battle but 55 to 45 should be a guaranteed loss.
The last in regulation was very poorly executed by the Celtics. Ray Allen set a ball screen for Paul Pierce only to leak out behind a KG screen. How many times have we seen this before? I’ll guarantee you the Lakers have seen it more on film. The thing is, it shouldn’t matter if the C’s execute which they did not. Pierce shouldn’t have picked up his dribble after Ray made his move in case he couldn’t get open. The result, a Pietrus prayer 27 footer moving away from the basket. That should have been a sign of things to come.