The Celtics had their first loss on Sunday to a very good Magic team. However, they Celtics weren't playing well at all. Ray Allen couldn't hit the jumper, which may be the result of playing 40+ minutes per game. Everyone is asking what happened to Ray's shot. It could be as simple as Doc playing him too many minutes and his legs just aren't there for the jumper. The Celtics got away from focusing on defense also. If they are going to be dominant, they have to continue their commitment to defense. The Magic got way too many easy baskets. One thing they need to address is the turnovers. They won't beat the top teams while committing 19 turnovers because the good teams will turn those turnovers into baskets on the other end.
I have been absolutely disgusted with the officiating so far this season. I expected the refs to be towing the line and trying to do everything they could to call games evenly and fairly but I have seen anything but so far. And it isn't all against the Celtics. A couple of those games the Celtics got all the calls. Something really needs to be done with the officiating. Maybe it is time for David Stern to give the job up. He still gives his refs way too much power and doesn't allow for anyone to question them, in spite of ample evidence that the refs should be scrutinized. He can't possibly watch what has been going on so far and be happy.
I love Tommy Heinsohn. I hate it when I have to watch the other team's feed. I want a touch of homerism in my broadcasts. I wish League Pass would give you a choice of feeds like they do with the audio league pass. I didn't get to watch Tommy in the last game but found this on the M&M Boston website:
Tommy Heinshon delivered a great line against the Magic on Sunday. After Hedo Turkoglu hit the winning 3 pointer Tommy yelled out, “I know how I would defend him, I would steal his green card!” Classic Tommy. And for all those that can’t stand the “bias” commentary of Tommy and his explosions, go sit on a tack.
Rondo is for real. His jumper is looking really good and he is gaining confidence in it. I don't think his 8-9 performance against Orlando was a fluke. He will make teams pay for leaving him open from now on. He has made 18 of 26 over the last three games and is shooting 57.5% for the season. Now that his jumper is looking better, Doc was picking on his defense after the last game. As with everything else, expect Rondo's defense to get a lot better.
I still am not sold on Doc's coaching. Yes, the team is 8-1 but most of that is on the talent of the team. Doc is still making questionable moves and has to make better decisions on substitutions, matchups and in game decisions to take this team to the finals. Once they get to the playoffs, coaching is more important and the matchups and little adjustments become very important. We can win games with a mediocre coach but we won't win a playoff series.
Tony is working his way back but isn't there yet. It was evident when he missed the uncontested layup in the last game. He had no lift off that surgically repaired leg. Whether it was because he doesn't have confidence in it or he doesn't have the strength, he still has a way to go.
Brandon Wallace played his first game for the Flash. He scored 11 points, including a thunderous follow-up dunk that brought the crowd to its feet and led the Flash in rebounding with 9. Good start. I think we will see some good things from this kid.
The Knicks are like a 3 ring circus. First Isaiah benches Starbury and then Starbury takes off. Marbury says he has some dirt on Isaiah. The team votes unanimously that they don't want Marbury playing and so Isaiah sits him for a quarter and then plays him the rest of the game. Isaiah throws the whole team out of practice. Now, Steph is back to starting again. You just can't make this stuff up.
I have been very underwhelmed with Scal's play of late. His shooting has been horrendous including a few airballs from beyond the arc. He seems to be out of sync at times and just isn't adding all that much to the team. I would much rather see Powe or Baby out there getting his minutes. At least they can get better. Everyone always says he is in there to stretch the defenses and hit the 3 but when he misses more than he hits and doesn't do much else, he really isn't earning his minutes.
We shouldn't overlook the Warriors. It is easy to do with their 3-6 record and with the Lakers coming to town on Friday, but they have won 3 in a row, with the last 2 on the road and are a much different team with Stephen Jackson back from his suspension. I am sure that the Celtics will take the game seriously after losing the last one and not playing very well at that. Rondo is in for another tough matchup with Baron Davis in town. The Celtics are still undefeated at home and they need to work at making the Garden one of the toughest places to play in the league.
Tonight is a big game. The Warriors are coming off a rout of the lowly Knicks and have won three straight. The Celtics defense will be tested tonight. I thought Doc did right by leaving Pollard out there to defend against Howard as the Celtics did climb back in the game. Golden State does not have that monster on the blocks like Orlando does. All we got to do is contain Baron Davis and this game is ours tonight.