The Sixers started out this game very strong and played well. They shot a sizzling 71% in the first quarter and dropped to 60% for the first half. They finished the game shooting 56% from the floor. This should tell you something about the Celtics defense. For much of the game, it was non-existent.
In the first half, the Sixers got whatever shot they wanted as the Celtics were playing sluggishly and not playing defense at all. At half time, the only Celtic in double figures was KG with 12 points. Also, the Celtics were out rebounded 19-11 in the first half. The energy just wasn't there. But, the Celtics picked it up in the second half to pull out a 113-103 win.
The story tonight was the bench. The Celtics got 46 points and 14 rebounds off the bench tonight with Posey and House coming up big down the stretch. Big Baby was the first player off the bench and played a solid 15 minutes, scoring 6 points and pulling down 2 rebounds. Posey was huge in this game, scoring 17 points on 6-9 shooting along with 5 rebounds and 1 assist. House finished with 15 points, 2 rebounds, and 1 assist in 15 minutes.
Tony Allen continued his come back with 8 points, 5 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 steals and 1 block in 16 minutes off the bench. Like the team, he had a slow first half but played much better in the second half. Scal played just under 2 minutes and didn't show up on the stat sheet. Pollard and Powe did not play.
Rondo seemed to struggle in this game. His trademark defense seemed to be lacking as Andre Miller scored time after time. Doc went with Eddie House down the stretch as Rondo played only 28 minutes and filled up the stat sheet with 6 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and 1 block. Ray Allen is still struggling with his shot going only 3-12 and finishing with 12 points, 2 rebounds, and 1 assist in 35 minutes
Pierce did a little bit of everything, playing a game high 44 minutes. He finished with 19 points, 3 rebounds, 12 assists, and 1 steal. He passed up several shots he would have taken last season to pass off to teammates for a better shot. KG had a very solid game with 22 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals, and 1 block in 35 minutes. Perk was playing very well until Doc sat him with 4 fouls in the 3rd quarter and he didn't return. He finished with 8 points, 4 rebounds and 1 steal in 20 minutes.
The Celtics shot 53% for the game but allowed the Sixers to shoot 56%. The Celtics came back from a poor rebounding first half to gain a 3 rebound edge for the game. The Celtics also did a good job limiting turnovers, finishing with only 11. The Celtics were wearing their throw-back jerseys. Thankfully they didn't go to the throw back shorts.
I remember last season, when we played the Pistons or the Spurs, we would be able to hang with them through a half or three quarters or even up until the last 5 minutes and then they would flip the switch and put us away. It seems as though the Celtics team this season is like that. They come out with poor energy and let teams hang with them for awhile and then flip the switch and turn it on. The Sixers played as hard as they could play and hung with us for 3 quarters but at the end of the game it is like they turned on the defense and pulled away. After being on the receiving end of those kinds of games for so long, it sure is nice to finally be on the giving end. 15 and 2 sure has a nice ring to it.