Avery Bradley usually isn’t compared to Larry Bird. During one shot tonight, that changed. The fourth-year guard was in the right spot in the first quarter on Tuesday night, rebounding a Jared Sullinger airball under the basket. Knowing he needed to get off a shot before the shot clock expired, Bradley hoisted up a prayer [...]
We’ve talked about Jared Sullinger quite a bit this week, but he has been playing intriguingly well, so forgive us for continuing the trend. The “Should Sullinger be taking 3-pointers?” argument continues to rage, but last night presented compelling arguments for proponents of the strategy. I wrote about these shots specifically during the preseason, and [...]
Only five NBA teams are humiliated by a less effective offense than the one currently deployed by the Boston Celtics. But being that Thanksgiving is right around the corner, here are a couple parts of that offense we should all be grateful for. (Most notably the fact that it’s run by Brad Stevens, a mastermind [...]
Last season, Jared Sullinger was whistled for 6.2 fouls per 36 minutes. In other words, statistically, even if the Celtics wanted to give him a starter’s minutes, he would foul out before the 36 minute mark. Some of that was on Sullinger — it takes a certain amount of time to adjust to the way [...]
In a playoff-less season, the Celtics really have only one thing to look forward to before lottery night: The return of Rajon Rondo. There are always a few indicators that a player is nearing his return, and one of the first ones is that he is returning to drills during practice. From Gary Washburn’s Twitter [...]
Trade talk hasn’t died down just yet in Boston. Days after Danny Ainge confirmed to Steve Bulpett of The Boston Herald that the team was engaged in discussions with other teams pertaining to their veteran pieces of the roster, we have another report surfacing today from Jared Zwerling of Bleacher Report on potential talks between the Celtics [...]
Paul Pierce, SF41 MIN | 6-19 FG | 1-1 FT | 5 REB | 4 AST | 14 PTS | -9
Pierce’s DIY offense reared its head again at times late in this game. The defense swarmed him accordingly, and he rarely passed out of it. He made several weird choices on offense throughout the evening, but his defensive effort was appreciated and he played huge minutes for the second night in a row.
Brandon Bass, PF42 MIN | 10-17 FG | 1-2 FT | 10 REB | 1 AST | 21 PTS | +2
I feel better when Bass’s jumpers go up than any other jumpers on the team. He knows his spots and Rondo knows how to find him there. He also outrebounded Zaza Pachulia with a four-inch disadvantage and put down some sick dunks. Every day I like to remind myself that he was acquired straight up for Glen Davis (8.6 pts, 5.1 rebounds, 40% shooting).
Kevin Garnett, PF33 MIN | 9-20 FG | 4-4 FT | 12 REB | 2 AST | 22 PTS | 0
How DARE anyone tell Kevin Garnett he couldn’t play the end of that game. On a night when Allen sat and Pierce and Rondo couldn’t hit, Garnett carried the offense. He posted up when he got one matchup, and he took jumpers when he got the other matchup. His shot chart looks like a sawed-off shotgun blast. How could this guy ever have thought about retiring three months from now?
Rajon Rondo, PG47 MIN | 3-16 FG | 4-4 FT | 10 REB | 20 AST | 10 PTS | +6
A+ for the assists, rebounds, and defense. D+ for the shooting and turnovers. That averages out to an A somehow. It was a triple double! With 20 assists!!! He shouldn’t be punished too harshly for some bad luck at the rim.
Avery Bradley, SG31 MIN | 3-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 7 PTS | -13
I love that Doc can now choose between Pietrus and Bradley to shut down the opposing team’s best scorer, depending on the size of the player. I also loved when Bradley flushed that three in the third.
Keyon Dooling, PG4 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | +1
Even without Ray, I’m not sure what he was “dooling” in the game.
Sasha Pavlovic, SF14 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | +12
Never has a player done so much while doing so little. Someone needs to come up with an “in the mix” quantification for Sasha. I guess his team-high +12 will suffice.
Mickael Pietrus, SF29 MIN | 3-5 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 8 PTS | +11
Pietrus got an A for his speedy recovery, his clutch shooting, and his defense on Joe Johnson tonight. Then he asked fans to follow him on Twitter in his postgame interview and that got him the bump to the A+.
Greg Stiemsma, C24 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 8 REB | 0 AST | 6 PTS | 0
Ah, that flat-footed Stiemsma jumper. He’s reluctant to shoot it, but even more reluctant to miss it. Stiemsma got jobbed at the end of the game but had already given his team a monster night on defense and the boards. When he ascends to superstar status in two weeks he’ll stop getting those ticky-tack calls.
Three Things We Saw
Guts all over the floor. How this team won a SEGABABA when they turned the ball over 19 times, took ten fewer free throws, and terrible officiating that lost them their only two players taller than 6’7″ will forever be a mystery. I’m glad this team finally gets a day of rest, but I also wish I could watch them play every day.
The game within the game of Tommy Heinsohn’s fury vs. his own heart trying not to explode. And that game was probably closer than the basketball one. I tried to imagine what it would be like for a Hawks fan listening to Tommy on League Pass and got a brief glimpse of why so many people hate him so much.
I have a complaint about the Boston crowds: there were at least three instances of the Celtics running out of shot clock without realizing it tonight. That should never happen. Crowds are supposed to COUNT DOWN THE SHOT CLOCK when it gets close. Get involved, please.