The Celtics started out slowly and seemed sluggish. The Pacers were beating us to every loose ball and rebound. In the first quarter, the 3 stars had only 8 points among them and the rest of the team had the other 18. In spite of that, the Celtics led by 2 at the end of 1. Then, in the second quarter, Jamaal Tinsley hit Pierce very hard in the head, which should have been a flagrant, but wasn't called. Pierce was mad and was really fired up about that foul and non call. Pierce and Tinsley have history from the playoff series where Pierce was ejected and showed up at the press conference with his face in bandages after being fouled hard in the face by Tinsley. Instead of losing it like he did in that series, he channeled his emotions toward getting his team the win. After hitting the first free throw, at KG's suggestion, he did a couple of push ups to get his emotions in check and then calmly hit the second. Just another way that KG's value to this team can be seen.
After the hard foul and hitting his free throws, Pierce just took over the game. He hit jumpers, drove to the basket, got steals, blocked a shot, took a charge, and gave the team the emotion it lacked in the first quarter. Pierce finished with 31 points, 11 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 steals and 1 block in 41 minutes. He drove to the basket and when they collapsed on him, he found the open man. He really gave the team a boost in every way and won the Tommy Award for his efforts.
Ray Allen went the whole first half without scoring but came out in the third with a vengeance, scoring 15 of his 17 points in the third. He finished the night with 17 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and 1 block in 40 minutes. KG had a quiet double double and finished with 18 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals and 2 blocks in 39 minutes.
Perk played 21 minutes and was hampered by foul trouble for most of the game. He finished with 5 points, 2 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks and played some good defense in the paint. Pollard played 10 minutes and played some good defense. He finished with 5 points and 2 rebounds. At one point he took a charge and Pierce ran over to him and helped him up and gave him a big hug. I guess Pierce was glad to see him back.
Posey and Scal were both back in the lineup. Posey played 17 minutes and had 6 points, 3 rebounds 1 assist and 1 steal and he played solid defense and took a couple of charges. Scal played 13 minutes and had 9 points, 1 rebound and 1 block.
Rondo did a good job of running the team but sat early with 2 quick fouls. He finished with 5 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals, and 1 block in 31 minutes. In the 4th quarter, Tinsley again committed a hard foul, this time on Rondo and this time the refs called it a flagrant 1. Eddie House played 16 minutes and had 5 points and 2 rebounds. House limped off in the 4th quarter and the early reports are that he has a sprained ankle. This could be bad news for the team if he has to be out for any period of time.
Big Baby got in to the game for the last 55 seconds of the first half and Powe had yet another DNP.
The passing in the first half wasn't near what we have seen in past games, but they picked it up in the second half and the ball movement was much better. They finished the game with 17 assists on 31 baskets. The defense was also lacking in the first half but picked up decidedly in the second and the team finished with 8 blocks and 12 steals as a team. The Celtics shot 42.5% while holding the Pacers to 34.9% The final score was 101-86. Yet another double digit margin of victory.
Once again, we face the nets on the second of back to back games. House may be out as he sprained his ankle tonight. Carter should still be out for New Jersey. Also, the three stars played close to 40 minutes each in tonight's game and that could be a factor in tomorrow's game. The Celtics have now tied the 87-88 team that went 6-0 to start the season. Ironically, they beat the Pacers for their 6th win also. They lost their 7th game, but hopefully, this team will win their 7th and make some history of their own.