Today I am just really excited!! I know it was just the first game. I know Lebron only played minimal minutes. But what I saw last night from the Celtics has me very happy. They played defense. They played together. They ran. They rebounded. I liked what I saw very much. Rondo is the real deal. I was very impressed with his play. He was poised, made very good decisions, and looked like a true floor general out there, causing Tommy to draw comparisons to Cousy several times.
If I were to pick a starting lineup from what I saw last night, it would be Perk, Al, Green, Pierce, and Rondo. As a unit, they played very well together and seemed to mesh. Aside from my view of the team through green colored glasses, there are a few articles around today worth reading.
Mark Murphy in the Herald focuses on Gerald Green's improvement from last season. He definitely didn't look anything like the lost Gerald of the year before. Much of Green's improvement can be credited to his work with John Lucas over the summer. Coincidently, Perk worked with Lucas as well when he was supposed to be rehabbing.
In Murphy's Notebook, he lets us know that it was only one preseason game but that there were a few revelations we can take from it.
The two revelations - at least for a night - were rookie Rajon Rondo, who almost single-handedly changed the pace of the game with 11 points, eight assists and five rebounds, and an empowered Michael Olowokandi, who grabbed 10 rebounds (five offensive) and blocked a shot in eight third-quarter minutes.
I am just hoping that Kandi isn't playing for a contract just to ease back into his comfortable zone once he makes the team. Rondo definitely will play and I still believe that he will be our starting PG. West stayed home for precautionary reasons along with the fact that he didn't renew his passport.
In the Globe, Shira once again tells us that Perk knows his role and is ready to fill it. I really love this kid. He looked very good last night and it wasn't just his defense. His baby hook in the lane was looking very good as well. He is one of the better passing centers in the league right now in my opinion as well.
Jesse in the Green Room gives us his first impressions. Those who impressed him include Rondo, Green, Kandi and Perk. His list of disappointments include Telfair, Ratliff, Wally and Pitts. I think Wally may be having problems with the new ball because a lot of his shots went in and then rattled back out but something was definitely off for him last night. The biggest disappointment for me was our free throw shooting. We can't expect to win close games shooting 58.8% from the line. From watching him last night, Pittsnogle needs to go. Ratliff picked up 2 quick fouls and looked a step slow. Kandi played like a man possessed and fought for every rebound and every loose ball.
The Patriot Ledger has another article about Perk and the fact that he is willing and able to fill whatever role is asked of him. It is pretty much a repeat of the Herald article but does give me a chance to say how much I love this kid again! Although after watching Rondo last night, I am fully and firmly on his band wagon as well.
It was a great way to start the season. I just hope we can keep up all those positive things I saw last night.
I'm a bit reluctant to put out that starting lineup, FL (Perk, Al, Gerald, Pierce, Rajon). If we do that, we'll have no one on the bench to come in and ignite some energy.
Just kidding. I would like to see how that lineup does. That could very well be our starting lineup at some point this season. Good combination of uptempo basketball, outside shooting, inside post presence, defense, rebounding, energy and hustle.