Tonight's game was definitely different. To begin with, the Nets starters didn't even make the trip to Boston. Then, the game was in doubt from the beginning because the building was warm and the ice under the court was causing condensation and making the floor very slippery. Also, the referees didn't show up until just before the game due to getting stuck in traffic.
The game started off with the Celtics starting their usual 5 of Garnett, Pierce, Allen, Perk and Rondo. The Nets started Magloire, Boone, Nachbar, Wright and Gill - Not exactly the line up to strike fear in anyones hearts. Rondo was doing a great job of pushing the ball up the court and setting the tempo and once again the starters played well together building a 21-8 lead at the end of 1. The Nets shot just over 6% in that first quarter but picked it up a bit to finish with 29% for the game.
The starters didn't return for the second quarter and as the quarter got underway, it was obvious that the floor was an issue. The players were slipping and very tentative on the court. While the players were at one end, there were guys out on the floor at the other wiping up the condensation. Because of the floor issues, the game was low scoring and not all that exciting as players were more concerned about not slpping and getting hurt than anything else.
After half time, they announced that the second half was cancelled. The Celtics would hang around for half hour or so and sign autographs for the fans. They were lined up behind the scorers tables and fans could pass in front and meet the players and get autographs. Rondo was having fun shooting tee shirts into the crowd with Lucky using a tee shirt gun. CSN showed an encore performance of the second half of the Knicks blow out.
There weren't all that many stats to report but the important one is that the Celtics had 8 assists on 12 field goals. They are still sharing and moving the ball very well in spite of the problems with the floor. There was one nice play where Leon Powe stole the ball and took it all the way to the hoop for a dunk. I can just see it now, Powe is going to be playing back up point guard. Rondo hit a 22 foot jumper with the shot clock winding down. His shot looks good and it looks like he will make defenders pay if they leave him open this season.
Cousy joined Mike and Tommy to talk about old times and the current Celtics. One thing that is interesting is that Cousy didn't sound all that excited about the trade. He was saying how much he liked Big Al and Gomes.
It was a very different evening and the game was pretty ragged due to the floor issues but the starters played well together once again in spite of the floor and it didn't stop Rondo from pushing the ball and running. The defense on the starting unit is looking better and better. We will face the Nets again on the 23rd and that game will be a much better gauge of how these two teams match up.