The Red Claws won the first of back to back games this weekend as they squeaked past the Springfield Armor 102-101. The Game was tight throughout with the Red Claws leading 53-52 at the half. They played to a stalemate in the 3rd quarter with each team scoring 27 to give the Red Claws an 80-79 lead going into the final frame.
In the fourth quarter, the Armor evened the score at 85-85 with 7:54 to go. The Red Claws then went on a 10-3 run to put them up 98-88 with 3:52 remaining. After exchanging baskets for a while, the Armor went on an 8-0 run to tie the game at 100-100 with 35.1 seconds to go. After a pair of missed shot attempts by the Armor, Maine regained possession. With 3.9 seconds left, Shelvin Mack's jumper rimmed out but Fab Melo corralled the ball and finished the go-ahead layup with just 1.2 seconds remaining. A desperation jumper fell short for Springfield at the buzzer.
Celtics camp invitee Micah Downs had another strong game with 26 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists. Point guard Shelvin Mack led the Red Claws with 26 points, 4 rebounds, 11 assists and 3 steals. Melo returned to the Red Claws from the Celtics yesterday after passing his concussion tests and came off the bench to score 6 points, including the game winner, to go with 6 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 blocks.
You can watch the second half of the game, including Fab's game winner above. The Red Claws will be back in action tonight as they host the Armor with the game beginning at 7 pm. You can watch the game streamed live here.
I love Tommy. I hope he never retires. While other teams' fans complain about him being a homer, I just love listening to him. He's loving what Avery Bradley has brought to the team with his return. He describes Avery as a bee. I kind of think he's more like a cross between a bee and a pit bull.
"Well, Bradley, once again, out-hustles all of them! It's like trying to swat a bee! Watch out!"
— Tommy Heinsohn (@CSNTommy) January 12, 2013
The Celtics haven't had a player like Sully in the low post in a long time. I love the kid. It's fun reading the comments from other fans bemoaning the fact that their team could have had Sully and passed on him.
2 from Sullinger: "I like it when they get him in the low post! He's got some moves, baby!!!"
— Tommy Heinsohn (@CSNTommy) January 12, 2013
Another good win for the Celtics. I love opposing fans that admit that the refs are helping them. Lots of love for Sully, and well deserved. Respect for Avery as well, again, well deserved. I've highlighted my favorites in bold. What are yours?
Run, run, run and we should win. Boston prefers a slower pace.
KG tries to start a fight with Toney. We win by 11.
Greg Smith tells KG his wife smells like frankenberries....
Please...Rockets players...no hounding of Garnet after the game
A trap games, Lin will be exposed.
Nothing more to expose now: can't go left, no jumpshot, no defense, turnover prone, slow....but DECEPTIVE in all of the above
The Celtics won yet again last night to improve their record to 19-17. With the win and a Bucks loss, the Celtics are now seventh place in the conference. You may not think that's much, but it is. Think about this. If the season ended today, they would get to play the struggling Knicks instead of the Heat, who would win even if they didn't deserve to because the refs would help them out.
Yesterday's USOTN goes to the numbers put up by Rajon Rondo. Rondo had 12 points, 5 rebounds, and 8 assists. It was a pretty good night for him, and I guess you could call this a near triple-double. He usually gets plenty of attention, but last night was different. As always, leave your own USOTNs below.
Like the last few games, this one didn't have much to complain about. It was a nice game from the beginning and I don't see the Celtics losing for a few more games. Actually, I think there's a chance we could see this club go undefeated for a long time. Here is their upcoming schedule:
• 3 at home vs CHA, NO, and CHI
• 2 road games at DET AND CLE
• 1 at home vs NY
• 1 road game at ATL
• 4 at home vs MIA, SAC, ORL, and LAC
Anyway, it basically goes on like this for a while until March 10 in Oklahoma City. Until then, I expect them to go undefeated.
7:17: Tonight, the red-hot Celtics will host the Houston Rockets. The Celtics, thanks to four straight wins, are now above .500 at 18-17. The Rockets are currently 21-15 and 7-3 in their last ten. Vegas oddsmakers have the Celtics listed as -3.0 favorites in this one. There hasn't been any players listed as out for this one, so there's nothing to worry about. Keep checking back here after each quarter for updates. Enjoy the game.
8:35: The Celtics, thanks to 14 points and 8 rebounds from Sullinger, lead the Rockets at halftime 53-45. Everything seemed to go right in the first 24 minutes. The C's only outscored Houston by 3 in the first quarter, but that lead extended to as high as 11 in the late second quarter. Boston has also had big nights from Lee and Green, who have 10 and 9 points. To go along with that, they are also being out rebounded, 23-20.
9:23: The Celtics were able to outscore the Rockets in the third quarter, 25-21. Paul Pierce leads the scoring with 18 points. Closely following him are Sullinger with 14 and Lee with 14. Sullinger did not score the entire quarter. The current score: Celtics 78, Rockets 66.
9:58: The Celtics have won yet again. They started the fourth quarter very badly, as they allowed the Rockets to go on a 15-7 run to lower their deficit to 85-81. But the Celtics turned it around in time and won by the final score of 103-91. Pierce finishes on top of the scoring list with 23 points, followed by KG with 17 and Lee/Sullinger with 14. The Celtics are now 19-17 and remain the eastern conference's 8 seed. Stay here at CG. Post game and USOTN coming soon. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
The Celtics, currently on a four game win streak, will play the second game of a five game home stand tonight when they face the Houston Rockets. The Rockets are 21-15 and seem to know what they're doing. James Harden has been hot lately, and Lin has evolved into a solid point guard. I think the Celtics can win tonight, but they'll have to play much better than they did on Wednesday. Here are tonight's five things:
5. KEEP REBOUNDING:
The Celtics don't have a lot wrong with them right now, but they will still need to keep rebounding. Consistency is important for them going into tonight. Their rebounding needs to stay consistent.
4. KEEP GETTING NICE PERFORMANCES FROM GREEN:
Jeff Green seems to finally be putting it back together. Against Phoenix, Green had 14 points. His 14 points led the team. I don't know if he's completely fixed, but he's on the right track.
3. KEEP UP THE DEFENSE:
Like rebounding, the Celtics have had great defense. But, that doesn't guarantee that they won't completely fall apart tonight. They need to keep playing hard and winning games.
2. CONSISTENT PLAY:
The Celtics weren't at all consistent Wednesday night. They fell behind often and weren't always sprinting down court. They need to not have just one good quarter and instead control the entire game.
1. KEEP GETTING REBOUNDS FROM SULLY:
Jared Sullinger had a career high 16 rebounds against the Suns. This was obviously a bright spot and I expect more of this from him to tonight. He's a beast.
at Houston Rockets (21-15) at Boston Celtics (18-17) Friday, January 11, 2013 7:30 PM ET Regular Season Game #36, Home Game #18 TV: CSN-NE, CSN-H, NBA-LP 752(HOU)/753(BOS) Radio: WEEI, KBME TD Garden Referees: Bill Kennedy, Tony Brown, Olandis Poole
The Celtics host Kevin Mchale the Houston Rockets, looking to avenge
their earlier loss and to keep their season high 4 game win streak
going. The Rockets are coming off a loss to New Orleans, but before
that, they had won 5 in a row and have been playing very well.
Celtics lost to the Rockets 101-89 in Houston on their recent 4 game
trip that started on Christmas Day. In that game, they had a 2 point
lead at the half but were outscored 58-44 in the second half. The
Celtics shot only 40% in that game. Houston is 8-3 in their last 11
games in Boston.
The Rockets are 7-3 in their last 10 games
while the Celtics are 5-5, in spite of winning their last 4 in a row.
The Celtics have played well at home with an 11-6 record at the Garden.
On the other hand, the Rockets have struggled somewhat on the road,
going just 7-9.
The Celtics are finally back over .500 and they
are looking to stay there. After the Celtics win over the Knicks,
Courtney Lee said that he wants to go on a 20 game win streak starting
with these 5 home games. That would be nice, but they have to do it
one game at a time, starting with this one.
With an ugly win over Phoenix last night, the Celtics are now back above .500. I expected this to happen. The Celtics won't go down. They didn't have a huge scorer last night, but I guess you could give that honor to Terry or Green.
Today's USOTN goes to the 12 steals recorded by the Celtics. The Celtics average just 8.7 steals per game, but seemed to just dominate last night. The Suns had just 5, which means that the Celtics must still be improving their ability to take care of the ball. As always, if there was a stat that should've been picked leave a comment. This one was hard to find.
There's not a lot besides that the Celtics just won another game. It was against a weak team and it should've been a blowout. But, I'll take it. At least now they have a winning record. Their next game is tomorrow at 7:30 pm ET. They will be hosting the Rockets. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
It's great seeing all the love for Avery and Sully. I just hope Danny doesn't make another blooper and trade away a key member of this team just as they are pulling it all together. The comment about KG playing better mad like the Hulk and the comment about a Suns player dating Rihanna both cracked me up. Finally the Celtics win 4 in a row! Good stuff! I've highlighted my favorites in bold. What are yours?
Lets watch Suns lose again... Gentry keep the tanking going on 4th
Celtics just whooped the Knicks and will walk into the arena with their chests puffed out. Plus they have found an effective starting lineup finally in Rondo-Bradley-Pierce-Bass-Garnett, now that Avery Bradley is finally healthy. We are going to get stomped in this one. All I ask is that they please limit the minutes of S*****n B***n, Telfair, and Beasley.
I reckon we can win this I reckon Boston went all in against NYK, and are primed for a come down.
Hey after the game do you guys think there is any chance that...we steal Avery Bradley and sneak on on our team bus back to Phoenix?
Like just ...Kidnapp him and leave a note pinned to Shannon Brown who’s tied up in the visitor locker room shower?
A 5 game home stand coming up means more Mike and Tommy and more of Tommy tweeting through the games. Lots to look forward to. The return of Bradley has had an effect on every player, including Courtney Lee, who has been playing well, especially on defense.
On an aggressive back court of Lee and Bradley: "I'd hate to be the other back court, they are going to back them right into the corner."
— Tommy Heinsohn (@CSNTommy) January 10, 2013
Sometimes we forget what a dominant player Tommy was back in his playing days. If you get a chance, you should read his books. They are excellent and tell some great anecdotes about the Celtics back in the day. One story I loved was how Red sent Tommy out to antagonize and dog Wilt Chamberlain, who got so mad he threw a punch at Tommy but ended up hitting the floor and breaking his hand. You don't mess with Tommy!!
Did a player ever threaten to fight Tommy in the parking lot after the game? "They wouldn't dare."
— Tommy Heinsohn (@CSNTommy) January 10, 2013
On Wednesday night the Celtics returned home to open up their first of five home games. The Phoenix Suns were in town to avoid going 0-11 in their last away games. While the Celtics looked to continue their win streak to four games coming off a huge win against the Knicks. Rajon Rondo is back from his one game suspension and looked to led the team again. In a great team performance the Celtics beat the Suns 87-79.
Just about everyone contributed to this win, in fact everyone who played tonight scored at least 2 points. It also marked the first game the Celtics bench outscored the starters all year. Rondo moved back to point guard and was accompanied by Bradley, Pierce, Bass, and Garnett. The game jumped right out of the gates due to Bradley's high intensity and suffocating defense. He forced two fast breaks early on and got the team off to a great start. The Celtics went into halftime leading by 12 with the score at 53-41. Read more » Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
Carmelo Anthony has been suspended one game for waiting outside the Celtics' locker room and bus to confront Kevin Garnett after Monday's game in New York. The scuttlebutt around was that KG had made a comment about Melo's wife concerning Honey Nut Cheereos. But KG has denied trash talking LaLa and said that his comments were basketball related.
Rondo, witty as always, had some things to say about Melo's suspension, following his own suspension for that game.
Rajon Rondo's reaction to Melo 1-gamer: "I get suspended for a phone hang-up and people just get away with anything in his league" #Celtics
— Mike Petraglia (@Trags) January 10, 2013
Rondo served 1 gm suspension. When told of Anthony's 1 gm suspension- "Oh my goodness, so that's the same thing, huh?" #Celtics#CelticsTalk
— Jessica Camerato (@JCameratoNBA) January 10, 2013
Asked about being near bus when Melo was there, Rondo notes: “I didn’t want anything to happen to the big fella. I had my teammates’ back.”
— Chris Forsberg (@ESPNForsberg) January 10, 2013
7:21: The Celtics are riding high with 3 consecutive wins. Tonight, they will host the struggling Phoenix Suns. The Suns are just 2-15 on the road, while the C's are 10-6 at home. Rondo will return tonight. Keep checking here after each quarter for more updates.
8:13: I was wrong. The Suns came out with a great effort and completely caught the Celtics off guard. Although there is still plenty of time to turn it around, things don't look so good after 12 minutes. The Celtics trail the Suns, 24-23.
8:36: The Celtics really made the Suns look like themselves in the second quarter. Following a tough opening period, the Celtics dominated Phoenix going into halftime. Boston outscored Phoenix in the quarter, 30-17. Thanks to big games from Green and Bradley, the Celtics lead the Suns at the half, 53-41.
9:23: The Celtics entered the third quarter with a 12 point lead. But things changed immediately. Half-way through the third, the Suns had a 1 point lead. The Celtics didn't play much better afterwards but did manage to take a 67-64 lead heading into the fourth. Let's hope they pull it out.
9:49: The Celtics did pull it out. They really made this game look much harder than it should've been. They weren't playing a tough team, yet struggled on multiple occasions. They managed to outscore Phoenix in the fourth quarter, 20-15. The final score: Celtics 87, Suns 79. Stay here, post game and USOTN coming soon. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
The Celtics, coming off a great road win over the Knicks/David Stern, will head home tonight to face the low-life Suns. For the first time in a while, I feel confident that the Celtics will win tonight. The C's are at home, they are on a hot streak, they have Rondo back, and they are playing a weak opponent. Not in terms of record, the Celtics are probably one of the best teams in the eastern conference. At the pace they're going at, I expect them to win a lot more games. Here are tonight's five things:
5. USE THE HOME COURT TO YOUR ADVANTAGE:
The Celtics, despite winning tough games in both Atlanta and New York, are not a great road team. The C's are just 7-11 on the road, but are 10-6 at the garden. We know that they have the crowd backing them up, and that they have always played better in Boston. It hasn't been a big deal this year since they seemed to be losing everywhere to everyone, but the tides are turning.
4. DON'T PLAY DOWN TO YOUR COMPETITION:
The Suns are just 12-24. They are second to last in their conference and an embarrassing 2-15 on the road. If you thought we had it bad after the Grizzlies game, you were wrong. Those folks in Arizona don't have a lot of sports to be excited about. The Celtics need to stay focused and treat it like they did the Knicks game. The Suns are still professional.
3. KEEP REBOUNDING:
The Suns don't have a ton of big men and I'm not going to ignore that this is probably going to be a win. But, the most important part of the game remains the ability to rebound. This takes no explaining.
2. KEEP THE CONSISTENCY:
In the last few games, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett have had big performances. They just need to keep it up because the last thing they need now is a loss to one of the worst teams in the league.
1. TRY TO GIVE SOME STARTERS REST:
If the Celtics can get a big lead, which I expect them to, they need to give guys like Rondo and Pierce rest. They don't need any injuries right now and they need to keep up their momentum.
Tip-off for tonight's game is at 7:30 pm ET. Live game updates can be seen here.
at Phoenix Suns (12-24) at Boston Celtics (17-17) Wednesday, January 9, 2013 7:30 PM ET Regular Season Game #35, Home Game #17 TV: CSN-NE,FSA, NBA-LP 756(PHX)/757(BOS) Radio: WEEI, KTAR TD Garden Referees: Jason Phillips, David Guthrie, Josh Tiven
The Celtics are looking for their first 4 game win streak of the season
as they host the Phoenix Suns. This begins a 5 game home stand that
will also include Houston, Charlotte, New Orleans, and Chicago. The
Suns may put some extra effort into this game as they are sitting on
1999 wins and are looking for their 2000th franchise win. A loss in
this game will put the Celtics in the record books and not in a good
The Suns will reach 2000 wins in the 4th fewest games
behind the Celtics, Lakers, and Sixers. This game will be their 4th try
to gain that milestone for the franchise. The Suns have lost 3 in a
row while the Celtics have won 3 in a row. The Suns are 1-9 in their
last 10 games while the Celtics are 5-5 in their last 10.
Celtics are 10-6 at home while the Suns have struggled on the road with a
2-15 record. But Phoenix have won 4 out of the last 5 against the
Celtics, including their only game last season, a 79-71 win at the
Garden. The Suns are 5-4 against the Celtics in the KG era.
the Suns and the Celtics started the season with 9 new players that
weren't with the team last season. Both have struggled somewhat with
incorporating the new players. While the Celtics seem to be turning it
around, the Suns are still struggling to find some team chemistry. The
Suns played in Milwaukee last night and so fatigue may come into play
for them as well.
The Celtics are looking for their first 4
game win streak along with trying to get back over .500 again with a win
in this game. With some favorable matchups coming up during this 5
game home stand, this might be time for the Celtics to make a nice run.
If they play like they did in their past 3 games, it shouldn't be a
Note: Today is also the 1 year anniversary of Jeff Green's heart surgery.
Jeff Green tweeted the above this morning. Sometimes we forget that just a year ago he was facing a life and death situation. Those at the game tonight might want to give him a little extra love as he enters the game.
It's been a while since our last Rookie Report due to the holidays and a lot has happened in the time since our last. Jared Sullinger has recently been seeing extended minutes while proving he can be a reliable asset to the team in winning time. Fab Melo has put up record breaking numbers in the D-League and hurt himself on door frames. Finally is Kris Joseph who unfortunately was released by the Celtics this past week. We'll look to recap each players last few weeks and what to expect in the weeks to come. Read more » Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
The Celtics had another nice win in New York last night, beating the 23-10 Knicks 102-96. The Celtics had some cons in this one, but it was mostly good. In my opinion, this was probably their second best game of the year behind their last trip to the Big Apple. Remember that one. It was Christmas and the C's blew out the Nets. At that point we thought the C's were a championship team, but after that they fell apart. Now, they seem to have it back together.
Last night's USOTN goes to the performance of Jeff Green. Maybe it was just me, but Green didn't seem to get much attention last night. Green's 16 points was third on the team. To go with that, he also pitched in 6 rebounds and 3 assists. Let's hope he plays like this every night from now on.
Usually, I use this last paragraph to criticize the C's. But today, there is nothing to be mad about. I'm just going to enjoy this feeling until tomorrow's Suns game. Tip-off will be at 7:30 pm ET. Enjoy it. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
Tommy was really fired up about Rondo's suspension last night. I agreed with him then and after reading more about it, I agree even more. This whole situation was ludicrous. The fact that Danny Ferry felt the need to hand the video to the refs, the fact that the contact was absolutely innocent and negligible, the fact that they waited until hours before the Celtics faced the Knicks to announce it all makes it seem so contrived and like a league vendetta.
Rondo gave his side of the situation today and it's entirely believable. Rondo explained that he knows Rodney Mott and that he was joking with him about Josh Smith flopping. I watched the video again and Rodney Mott does look like he has a smile on his face. Here is more from ESPNBoston
"Yeah, I feel like I'm a criminal. I go to court a lot, they say investigation -- what happened during the investigation?" Rondo joked. "I'm not on trial or anything, it's just how it is when you're dealing with the league when you get in a little bit of trouble. I'm a repeat offender. I don't know if I have two or three strikes, but it is what it is."
Rondo admitted he might have to "adapt" his behavior moving forward, as it seems evident the NBA has become less tolerant of some of his on-court conduct.
"Maybe. I may have to, but I'll adapt. I'll learn the game," Rondo said. "But I'm an emotional player in that aspect. I think at that time I had a triple-double, we were up 10. I wasn't angry. I didn't go over and yell at Rodney. I think he even said that in his statement. But the league put the hammer down and made a decision."
Knicks fans have to be the most classless in the league. They even have the Lakers and Heat fans beat for having the least class in the league. They even beat the Nets fans even though they are now in the same city. Any time you see fans wishing death or injury on a player, all class has left the building. They really had no room to complain about the officials either because they got more than their share of the calls. And I saw Carmelo bump the ref last night just as much as Rondo bumped the one in the Hawks game. Of course Doc isn't petty enough to call that to the league's attention. Not likely they would do anything anyway, just as they never do anything to Kobe, Wade or LeBron when they manhandle the refs. I love reading fans complain about Celtics fans in their building. It was a very entertaining game and the good guys won. Enjoy today's comments. What are your favorites? Mine are in bold.
Please step on their throats and beat them by 20, send them a message that the division is ours and not theirs anymore.
I want to embarrass them and make Rhonda cry.
I really, really, really hate the Celtics.
We have nobody to slow down Rondo,I'll be surprised if we win this one.
What a great win in spite of Rondo's suspension. Speaking of Rondo's suspension, as you might suspect, Tommy was fired up about it. He especially was upset about the fact that Danny Ferry was a tattle tale and handed the video to the refs to take to the league.
Tommy on CSNNE Celtics Pregame Live: "Danny Ferry went to Duke! My kid went to Duke! I'm so fired up I may never talk to my kid again!"
— Tommy Heinsohn (@CSNTommy) January 8, 2013
On Rondo's suspension: "Ludicrous! It's absolutely ludicrous! When I say ludicrous, I don't even know how to spell it, but it's ludicrous!"
— Tommy Heinsohn (@CSNTommy) January 8, 2013
On Monday night the Celtics faced the New York Knicks in Madison Square Garden. This was the teams first meeting of the year and was certainly going to be one of their toughest tests are the Knicks hold one of the best records in the NBA. Prior to the game bad news hit Celtic nation as the league suspended Rajon Rondo for one game after making contact with a referee in their last game against the Atlanta Hawks. The Celtics looked to rally without their all-star and leader at point guard and did just that with a all around team win 102-96.
With Rondo out Doc Rivers elected to go with a starting line-up of Jason Terry, Avery Bradley, Paul Pierce, Brandon Bass, and Kevin Garnett. Of the starters Kevin Garnett logged the most minutes with 37 and was clearly emotionally invested in the game. He finished with 17 points on 6-11 shooting and 10 rebounds. Paul Pierce was "The Truth" per usual at MSG going for 23 points 6 assists and 3 rebounds. This marked the teams third straight win and was without a doubt their best so far. Read more » Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
7:25: The Rondo-less Celtics will head to New York tonight to face the 23-10 Knicks. The C's, despite winning two in a row, are still just below .500 at 16-17. It's disappointing that the Celtics will have to play without their best player tonight, but that's the way the league works. If they hate a team(Let's admit it, the Celtics are a thorn in Stern's side. If he could take away all of their stars he would. The NBA wants Kobe and Lebron to win, not Pierce and Garnett.) they will do anything to make them lose. As FL pointed out in an earlier article, Lebron as been much more physical with refs before and was not punished. Rondo just made indirect minor contact and has been suspended for it. Anyway, Bradley and Terry will probably fill in for him. Enjoy the game and check back here after each quarter for updates.
8:13: The Celtics had a very up-and-down first quarter in New York. It started out well, with Garnett scoring the first 8 points and Boston with an 8-7 lead. But then a controversial foul on Pierce changed the course of the quarter. Pierce was T'd up for arguing, and the Knicks went on an 11-0 run to take an 18-8 lead. After Garnett came out of the game, Sullinger and Lee stepped up. The Celtics rallied and ended the quarter on a 14-3 run. After one period at MSG, the Celtics lead the Knicks, 22-21.
8:47: The second quarter didn't go exactly as planned, but it could've easily been a lot worse. The Knicks made a lot of three pointers and the Celtics, despite good play, struggled to keep up. But they wouldn't go away and have shown great fight up to this point. Despite falling behind by as much as 8 at times, the Celtics trail only by one possession. At halftime, the Celtics are facing a slim 56-53 deficit. Paul Pierce is leading the scoring with 15, followed by KG with 10 and Green with 9. Bradley hasn't had a good day, but did make a nice layup at the second quarter's buzzer. He has just 2 points on 1/5 shooting. If they get him going, they will be very dangerous in the second half.
9:40: The Celtics again had a great third quarter. They came out with good effort and easily outplayed the Knicks. The Celtics were able to outscore New York, 23-16. After three quarters at MSG, the Celtics lead 76-72. They still have a lot of basketball to play, but they can do it.
10:15: The Celtics, despite not having Rondo, have beaten the New York Knicks tonight at MSG, 102-96. It looks like the NBA's efforts to secure a Knicks victory have failed. The Celtics are just too good. Last Friday, whoever runs CG's twitter feed tweeted "before you give up on this Celtics team, remember that they will turn it around." Whoever that is was right because that night the Celtics beat the Pacers and have followed that with two great statement wins in Atlanta and New York. Paul Pierce again led the team with 23 points, behind him was KG with 19 and Green with 16. Avery Bradley had his best game of the year with 13 points on 6/11 shooting(11 on 5/6 in second half). We don't know if he's turned it completely around, but we do know that the Celtics as a team have. Stay here, USOTN and Post game coming soon. Leave a comment Link backs Tweet
The Lakers are 15-18 and in 11th place in the West. There are reports of fights in the locker room and discord among the players. Pau Gasol is out indefinitely with a concussion. Dwight Howard is out indefinitely with a torn labrum. Jordan Hill is also out for at least a week. Steve Blake is out until at least mid January. They are depending on 38 year old Steve Nash and 34 year old Kobe Bryant to carry the load and they don't get much younger after that, either. But, they haven't lost their sense of humor. Rumors of a fight between Kobe and Dwight in the locker room after Kobe called Dwight soft led Kobe to tweet this photo, which I have to admit is a great response.
The Celtics, coming off their epic comeback win Saturday night in Atlanta, will head to NYC tonight to face the now-contending Knicks. New York currently sits at 23-10 and is just a 1/2 game behind the Heat for the top seed in the conference. Some people are saying that the Knicks bought their contention, but I don't believe that. They obviously signed many players, but they weren't good the instant Melo came over from Denver. So, something must've clicked this year. Anyway, here's tonight's five things:
5. FIND ANOTHER BIG SCORER:
The Celtics didn't have a ton of guys in double-digits Saturday night, and I think that they need another one in order to win tonight. In their last two wins, the Celtics haven't had a great offense. They are winning with their defense. Since the Knicks currently have the hottest scorer in the league in Carmelo Anthony on their side, the Celtics will need to win a high scoring battle if they are to win at all. There is no way that they will win tonight with 89 points.
4. KEEP REBOUNDING:
The Celtics aren't a great rebounding team. In Atlanta, the Celtics out-rebounded the home team 44-36. Obviously, just rebounding won't beat the Knicks. But it'd be a start. It won't hurt anything to keep crashing the boards.
3. KEEP TAKING CARE OF THE BALL:
The Celtics are not much better in taking care of the ball. Usually, even when they win, they have like 20 turnovers to their opponent's 15. This is another key category that would really help them outscore the Knicks. They had a good performance in Atlanta. Let's hope that continues.
2. DON'T ONLY HAVE ONE GOOD QUARTER:
I'm not going to complain about winning the Hawks game, but it wasn't a very pretty win. If you take away the third quarter, where they outscored the Hawks 33-9, they were outscored by 16. They might just wanna stay within a five point range tonight if they are to win. This will be a tough game to win, so a lot will have to go right.
1. HAVE SOMEBODY FILL IN FOR RONDO:
In case you somehow haven't heard, Rondo has been suspended one game for making contact with an official Saturday night. This isn't, at all, his fault. But, the NBA will do anything to make a media-hated player look worse. If the Knicks are involved, a team who seems to get the most media coverage every year(even when they didn't make the playoffs), they will make up a lie and have him sat down for that game. The contact was clearly not aggressive. It was probably either accidental or a "sorry man" touch. Obviously, somebody will need to fill in for the star point guard.
The NBA has announced that Rajon Rondo has been suspended for one game for making contact with an official and failing to cooperate with the league investigation. David Stern must really have it out for Rondo. When I watch that video, there is just incidental contact and it doesn't appear to be menacing. I've watched LeBron James grab a ref by the arm and turn him around to complain about a call and nothing was every done about that. I've seen Kobe grab a ref by the shoulder to stop him. Both of those were certainly more menacing to the ref than this. I guess only league favorites can touch the league's precious refs, most of whom are either crooked or incompetent. This is one of the most ridiculous things I've read in a long time.
There is speculation that Danny Ferry handed the refs the tape after the game that led to this suspension. Ferry was seen handing a DVD to the refs and he was fined $15,000 for inappropriate interaction with the refs after the game for doing so. They have known about this for 2 days and for the league to wait until hours before the Knicks game makes it seem as though they are intentionally trying to give the Knicks an advantage. Maybe I'm reaching, but if it quacks like a duck...
He will serve his suspension tonight vs the Knicks. This kind of underscores the need for a back up point guard in one of those two open roster spots. Obviously a win in tonight's game just got much harder. Maybe everyone else will pick up their game and win this one for their unfairly suspended point guard.
Boston Celtics (16-17) at New York Knicks (23-10) Monday, January 7, 2013 7:30 PM ET Regular Season Game #34 – Road Game #18 TV: CSNNE MSG, SNET1, NBA-LP 753(BOS)/754(NYK) Radio: WEEI, ESPN NY Madison Square Garden Referees: Tony Brothers, Dick Bavetta, Violet Palmer
Celtics visit division leading Knicks with both teams in search of 3rd
straight win. Whenever these two teams get together there is always a
playoff atmosphere, even in the preseason. They split the series last
season with each team winning on their home court. They also split a
pair in the preseason this year.
The Knicks lead the Atlantic
Division with the Celtics in 3rd, 7 games back. The Celtics are still
in the 8th spot in the East and are 2 games up on the Sixers who have
dropped to 9th and half a game behind Milwaukee for the 7th spot. The
Knicks last won the division in 1993-94 but look to end the Celtics 5
year reign over the Atlantic this season.
The Knicks are a very
good home team with a 13-3 record while the Celtics have struggled on
the road with 6 wins and 11 losses. The Celtics are 4-6 in their last
10 games and the Knicks are a slightly better 5-5 in their last 10.
Both have won 2 in a row and are looking for their 3rd straight win.
Both teams are coming off a come from behind win in their last game on
The Celtics can once again get back to .500 with a
win in this game. There are rumors all over about Danny working on a
blockbuster trade and that's always unsettling for players. Hopefully
it won't affect their play in this game as the Celtics need everyone to
play well if they are going to come out on top in this one.
With the Celtics move to waive Kris Joseph and Jarvis Varnado, there has come a wave of speculation and rumors. Ben Rohrbach on WEEI Green Street gives possible reasons for waiving the two players ahead of the deadline to guarantee their contracts.
These moves save the Celtics a few hundred thousand dollars, which doesn’t sound like much, but it opens the possibility of adding a veteran minimum talent like Kenyon Martin down the road.
2) The departures of Joseph and Varnado free up the team’s final two roster spots. Considering Danny Ainge‘s rumored interest in just about every big on the market, including DeMarcus Cousins and Marcin Gortat, the Celtics could take on additional players or slightly more dollars in a potential trade.
The deadline for either waiving non-guaranteed contracts or making them guaranteed for the rest of the year is Monday at 5 pm. ESPN's Marc Stein tweeted today that the Celtics Kris Joseph and Jarvis Varnado were among the players waived today.
The fact that they waived Joseph comes as a surprise as Doc and Danny were both very high on his potential. He has spent the majority of his time with the Maine Red Claws although they have moved him up and down a few times when the team was at home for a few days. Joseph averaged 17.7 points and 5.3 rebounds in 10 games for the Red Claws.
Varnado's release isn't quite as surprising as the shot blocking specialist was signed from the D-League to fill in until Chris Wilcox returned from the thumb injury. Varnado played in 5 games and averaged 1.2 points, 0.6 rebounds, 0.2 assists, and 0.2 steals but surprisingly, no blocks in 3.6 minutes per game.
Now comes the question as to whether Danny has someone in mind for those 2 open spots. Perhaps a back up point guard and a center? Now, we wait and see.
This was a very satisfying win for the Celtics. I love it when there are a lot of Celtics fans in opposing buildings. Atlanta seems to be the best for that. Lots of Josh Smith hate. I'm not really sure why Celtics fans are ready to give up a ton to get this guy when the fans that watch him night in and out don't like him. A fun game and some fun comments. As always, I've highlighted my favorites in bold. What are yours?
Hopefully the old men will be tired after yesterday and we have the best 2nd night of a back to back record in the NBA
THAT...would be an airball, Garnett
Who does he think he is?! Josh Smith?
Bass responds to Josh by showing that he CAN hit that....