It seemed as though everything came together for the Celtics tonight. Delonte returned to the lineup tonight and had a very good game. He filled up the stat sheet with 9 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals, and an incredible block on Eddie Curry. Rondo was once again incredible. His stats don't show the whole picture. He had 2 plays that were very impressive where he dribbled behind his back and went in strong for a layup. He also excelled on defense. Powe had another good outing with 16 points, 9 rebounds, 3 steals, 3 blocks. He is very tough in the paint. Perk had a good game with 11 points and 6 rebounds as did Al with 12 points, 7 rebounds and 3 blocks. Telfair also had a nice game with 10 points, 4 assists and 3 steals. Wally was shooting well and finished with 17 points
I really like the unit with Powe, Rondo, Tony, Al (or Gomes), and West. That is our best defensive unit and runs the floor very well. They played very well as a team. I hope to see this group together a lot more this season. Al was cut in the first quarter and got 3 stitches above his eye. He returned later in the game and played well in spite of the bandage over his eye.
Jackson and Ray got into the game for a short stint in the 4th quarter. Kandi, Ratliff, and Scal didn't play. From what Doc said in the post game show, Ray may have the advantage for the final spot over Jackson.
There were all positives in this game. We won the rebounding battle 44 -40, we had 16 turnovers, but several of them were at the end of the game when play got sloppy at both ends. The most incredible stat of the game is that we had 20 steals. That may be a record of some kind. The team was so active, cutting off passing lanes, and looking to disrupt every play. We also played much better defense tonight. Tonight's game has to make you excited if you are a Celtics fan. [Recap] [Box Score]
I really hope this game wasn't just an abberation. I hope this is how we can consistently play, because if we do, we are a 50 game win team.
Basically, we know that Pierce and Wally will put up points and Telfair and Rondo can provide solid PG play between the 2 of them. But for us to continue playing like we did against the Knicks, we'll need Jefferson and Powe contributing bench rebounding and some points and Delonte putting up some bench points also.
And whatever we get from Gomes, and Tony Allen is gravy.