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, SF40 min, 14 pts, 6 reb, 6 ast, 0 stl, 2 blk, 3-11 FG, 0-2 3FG, 8-8 FT
Paul Pierce didn’t completely have it going on the offensive end, but he more than made up for it defending Andre Iguodala for nearly the entire game. He shot horribly right up until that dagger of an elbow jumper with 1:18 to go. It’s always nice to see your go-to guy come up big when it matters most even if he’s been struggling all night.
Brandon Bass, PF24 min, 10 pts, 4 reb, 0 ast, 0 stl, 0 blk, 4-9 FG, 0-0 3FG, 2-2 FT
Bass is back! Okay, he’s almost back. He attacked the hoop really hard when he found himself in the paint and was able to get a jumper to fall midway through the third quarter. He didn’t shoot well otherwise, but when I say he’s back, I’m really referring to the spacing being back. More like the idea of Bass is back. Bass was able to knock down jumper after jumper in the regular season due to the Celtics ability to draw and kick. The Hawks’ constant switching on defense prevented Bass from being able to get it going at all last series. The Sixers aren’t going to switch as much and Bass should be able to find his groove and start knocking down shots.
Kevin Garnett, PF38 min, 29 pts, 11 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl, 3 blk, 12-20 FG, 0-0 3FG, 5-5 FT
There is no explanation needed for KG’s grade. But here’s Kevin explaining..er..something?
Rajon Rondo, PG40 min, 13 pts, 12 reb, 17 ast, 4 stl, 0 blk, 6-15 FG, 0-3 3FG, 1-2 FT
It’s getting to a point where people will start being surprised when Rondo doesn’t have a triple- double. I docked him a third of a grade for his six turnovers and generally uninspired play in the first half. To play that poorly in the first half and still end up with a triple-double is an amazing thing for our collective blood pressures. If Rondo starts out off, there’s still hope that he’ll get it together and start playing well.
Avery Bradley, SG27 min, 8 pts, 4 reb, 1 ast, 1 stl, 1 blk, 4-11 FG, 0-4 3FG, 0-0 FT
There were times tonight where Bradley looked 100% healthy and other times he looked like he was still being bothered by his left shoulder injury. The explosiveness in the open court was amazing to see, especially after Rondo appeared to have tweaked his groin doing a Tim Thomas split. Bradley was hip to Rondo’s ailment and took it upon himself to go end to end finishing with an amazing layup through two defenders. Speaking of defenders, Bradley was consistently the best one on the floor the entire game.
Ray Allen, SG33 min, 12 pts, 3 reb, 1 ast, 0 stl, 0 blk, 4-10 FG, 2-7 3FG, 2-2 FT
If Ray Allen finds his stroke soon, this series may be over very quickly. I loved Ray’s aggressiveness. His shot wasn’t falling so he appeared to be in attack/hustle mode. He also spent time guarding Andre Iguodala, a player that should have torched/posted Allen up routinely but didn’t due to Ray’s physicality and deceptive quickness. With his busted ankle, he shouldn’t be able to stay in front of anyone but he seems to be managing very well.
Keyon Dooling, PG9 min, 4 pts, 2 reb, 2 ast, 1 stl, 0 blk, 2-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT
Say what you want about Keyon Dooling, but the dude tries incredibly hard, is very active, and seems to be able to spell the Celtics guards for 10 minutes a game. If he can continue to do this and the Celtics continue to win, everyone in Beantown is going to be very happy.
Ryan Hollins, C10 min, 2 pts, 1 reb, 0 ast, 0 stl, 0 blk, 1-2 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT
There was a scary moment in this game where Ryan Hollins…actually drove to the basket and tried to kick it out before being fouled. It wasn’t exactly a bad play, but I’ve been wondering why Hollins jab steps every time he gets the ball since he got to Boston. Who actually thinks he’s going to put the ball on the deck? The answer: we all might have to start. Another scary moment was Hollins falling on his back after missing an alley oop dunk. Apparently it looked a lot worse than it was but worrying about whether or not Ryan Hollins can come back into the game is a scary prospect. The Celtics had better hope they don’t face a team with an elite front court.
Mickael Pietrus, SF11 min, 0 pts, 0 reb, 0 ast, 0 stl, 0 blk, 0-2 FG, 0-2 3FG, 0-0 FT
Remembering that there are two sides of the ball, Pietrus has earned a C. He can defend and he still cannot score.
Greg Stiemsma, C9 min, 0 pts, 2 reb, 0 ast, 0 stl, 1 blk, 0-0 FG, 0-0 3FG, 0-0 FT
Where has the Celtic fan favorite gone? The Stiemah is really struggling lately and it’s making it impossible for him to see any substantial court time.