First of all, my 3 least favorite words are fast becoming "Sheed for Three." Those three words are usually followed by something like "And the Hawks have the rebound." Sheed is shooting 30% from beyond the arc and last night was 2-8. Yet he keeps on chucking up 3 pointers. He may have been a big threat from beyond the arc at one point but that hasn't been the case so far. Doc needs to realize this and use him inside more or as a decoy from outside. Pretty soon the defenses will realize that their chances are better just letting him shoot from out there and they will start doubling off of him.
This brings me to something else that is bothering me. Two games in a row Doc has kept Perk on the bench for the entire 4th quarter and has gone with Sheed down the stretch. In the Orlando game, Howard went off in the 4th quarter. Yes, Perk had 5 fouls, but he still had one more to use. If he fouls out, then go with Sheed but in the meantime, Perk would have made a difference in that 4th quarter. Sheed certainly wasn't getting the job done against the Hawks either.
And ... cue officiating rant now.... I know it's not just me, but lately the Celtics just can't get a break from the officials. The free throws in the Orlando game were 40-18 in favor of the Magic. Huh? And last night, the free throws were fairly even, but it's when the Celtics' fouls came. They got several quick fouls to start the third and by 3 minutes into the period, the Celtics were already in the penalty. And, Sheed got another T for yelling "And one!" The last "and one" technical was rescinded and maybe this one will be too. I can't get over how quick refs are to call T's on Sheed. I totally believe Donaghy's allegations that refs have wagers among themselves to see who can be the first to call one on him.
And it's not just me. Basketbawful is hardly a Celtics site and they had this to say about the Magic game:
Let me start off by saying that the Celtics could have -- and maybe should have -- won this game in a blowout had the three zebras not done everything in their power to keep the home team in the game. Orlando's 40-18 free throw advantage doesn't even begin to describe how crazy it was to see Dwight Howard earn a touch foul on one end and then watch Boston's perimeter players getting pushed and pulled around without a whistle on the other end. I have long since given up trying to understand the general inconsistency displayed by NBA officials. I honestly don't care what they decide to call a foul as long as whatever they decide on is called the same way for both teams. If Marcin Gortat gets the call for a hand in his back, then shouldn't Paul Pierce receive a whistle for running through a sea of hacking hands and into an oncoming chest bump on his way to the rim? Seriously, once the Celtics built that 16-point lead, I thought I was watching a game of NBA Live with computer assistance turned on.
But, all that being said, the Celtics didn't help themselves either. KG really doesn't look 100% out there. I don't know if he is still having knee pain or if he is just so out of condition from sitting out the whole summer and then the 10 games this season, but he just doesn't look good, particularly on defense. 100% KG would have stopped Lewis on that last layup. Something just isn't right. And Sheed chucking up 3's doesn't help much either. They aren't playing team defense and worst of all, they aren't rebounding. Rebounding takes effort and desire. That's how the smallest guy on the court can out-rebound the big guys. Perk has been doing his job on the boards, but beyond that, I don't see anyone else putting out that effort.
The bench needs some help as well. Getting Marquis Daniels back will help a lot. That will free Eddie up to do what he does best and that is to set up and shoot the ball off the catch. It will also give us another player along with Tony who can drive to the basket. But, I don't know if that will fix all the problems but it will go a long way toward fixing a lot of them. There are rumors that the Celtics are looking to sign a veteran. Hopefully it's the right veteran and not another Marbury or Cassell, neither of whom really helped the team.
All that being said, I still think that the team can turn it around. It is going to take a change in their mindset. They need to get their focus back and they need to get back to playing team defense. Getting healthy is a top priority. It's obvious that KG isn't there yet. A big question is whether he will be healthy this season. If KG can get healthy and if the team can get their defensive focus back, I expect a run out of this team. I haven't given up on them yet.
And now the big game in this 3 game Hell week. The Fakers on Sunday. If the Celtics can pull out a win in this game, all will be forgiven. Maybe the other losses have all been to give the Fakers a false sense of security so they will take us for granted. It's a good theory, anyway.
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