It was another strange game.
If you haven’t broken out the worry sticks yet, go ahead. It’s time. We have a few dead horses to beat.
I’m just going to bullet point things:
Kevin Garnett, ice cold for most of the game, and a dubious reputation for not wanting to take the big shots, took a pass from Paul Pierce, the game’s leading scorer…and calmly drilled the winning basket as time expired.
Garnett also made Boston’s last basket in regulation with 1:07 left.
Rajon Rondo took the final shot in regulation… a three pointer, because a play never developed…and of course, missed.
Paul Pierce made a huge block on Al Harrington and then was blocked at the other end.
Harrington looked like Reggie Miller hitting three pointers in this one, though most were wide open looks, due to poor perimeter coverage.
From Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald….
When asked if Garnett is hurt, Harrington replied…
“To be honest, throughout my career, no disrespect to him, I could always get around him.”
I’d pin that one up if I were KG.
Eddy Curry is actually playing basketball again and already acting like his weight watchers butt should be getting special foul call treatment.
Curry pushed Rajon Rondo in the back while Rondo was airborne getting a rebound, sending Rondo to the ground just because Kendrick Perkins had grabbed a little of Curry’s jersey before Curry attempted to go up with a shot. The ref wouldn’t make the call though it all happened right in front of him.
That Rasheed Wallace was called for a foul when Curry got away with doing the exact same thing to Wallace didn’t matter, I guess. Wallace grabbed and pulled his own shirt while looking at the ref, demonstrating that Curry grabbed his jersey and the unappreciative referee gave Wallace a technical for the effort.
Shelden Williams played poor defense in his 9 minutes, no matter what the plus/minus says. There were two adjustments he didn’t make on Harrington that I saw.
Celtic rotations on pick and rolls continue to be erratic at best, and down right poor at times.
Kendrick Perkins solid 2 way game of 16 points on 6-7 shooting, 13 rebounds and 4 blocks will be lost in all the other stuff that sticks out.
On a make up call for missing a Kevin Garnett trip of a Knick player, Ray Allen had an offensive foul called on him, when he was clearly fouled by his defender.
Rasheed Wallace went 0-6 overall and 0-3 from the three point arc. He is now 0-11 on his three point attempts, and 5–41 in his last 8 games.
Paul Pierce, the game’s leading scorer with 33 points, drew double coverage as he moved to the right elbow. A wide open Kevin Garnett stepped inside the arc to receive a wide open pass and drilled an 18 footer at the top of the key as time expired in overtime to snuff out the Knicks.
The Boston Celtics continue to look very human….or is that…. I hate to say it…..very old?
The Cs established a 10 point first half lead before the Knicks came back to take the lead. The Celtics jumped out to an 11-0 run to start the second half and had the lead up to 14 points at 67-53 before the Knicks came back and retook the lead… again.
The Knicks were up 86-79 with 8:52 to go in regulation.
The 3-10 Knicks had won their last two contests and are starting to play with more confidence.
That the Knicks played pretty good defense at times, belies the fact that the Celtics continue to miss open shots. Ray Allen, KG, Rasheed Wallace, and Rajon Rondo laid enough bricks to build a small skyscaper.
Rajon Rondo looked more like the Rondo we have come to expect, even flirting with a triple double again, finishing with 14 points, 10 assists and 9 rebounds. He added 4 steals and just 2 turnovers. Foul shooting continues to be his Achilles heel as he went 4-8 in a game where one more make could have won the game.
Strange Game – Garnett = Captain Clutch
Paul Pierce carried the scoring weight for most of the strange game, drilling 6 of 7 three pointers, but the game winner went to Kevin Garnett , on a smart pass from Pierce. KG had a terrible shooting game, 4-15 on the night, and was noticeably favoring his leg at one point in the contest.
Garnett was missing shots all night and was 1 for 10 when he finally hit an 18 foot jumper to bring the Celtics to within 4 at 84-88 with. He would go on to hit 2 more clutch shots, including the game winner.
The Celtics can hardly take too many real positives from this one. They barely beat a team they should be toying with. Does this mean any young team that can get up and down the court , no matter how bad they are, will give them trouble? That answer is yes right now.
The Celtics’ 10-4 record is deceptive. They are not a very good team right now. Notice how I keep using the phrase ‘right now’.
One would hope that they are going to solve these problems, and sooner is better than later.
Paul Pierce led the team with 33 points on 9 of 17 shooting, but a stellar 6 of 7 from three point land, with 9 rebounds, 6 assists, 2 blocks, a steal, and 3 turnovers.
Rajon Rondo was a rebound shy of a triple double, in a solid all around effort, but his unbelievebly poor outside shooting and foul shooting was also a factor in this loss, oops, I mean win.
Ray Allen scored 13 points on 3 of 13 shooting and has officially joined the three point shooting slump. He si shooting just 30% on the season. Ray is just 2 -14 over the last three games. He is 5 for his last 28 three point attempts. His overall percentage is good at 46%. Ray added one rebound, two assists, a steal and two blocks.
Kendrick Perkins – except that 4 of Perkins 13 boards were on the offensive glass, his numbers were mentioned above and he continues to to be one of the more stable players on the team. But he misses some defensive assignments as well.
Kevin Garnett‘s health is the biggest concern as he doesn’t go out to the perimeter as well as he used to. If teams pick up on that and try to make KG really have to stretch to the arc to defend, it seems as if he doesn’t recover as quickly. So he seems to cheat a bit. The rest of the Celtics haven’t been picking up the slack. Fixable, but it illustrates a slight reduction in mobility for KG right now.
Garnett got busy when they needed it most with 3 of 5 very big shots. His 1-10 shooting was uncharacteristic, as he missed shots he normally makes. He also added 7 rebounds, but just one assist, no blocks, no steals and 3 turnovers. That A KG type game at all. That Al Harrington, and Wilson chandler were able to guard him in single coverage speaks to the situation.
The Bench didn’t do its job, even though Eddie House was hitting the three ball for 10 first half points in just 9 minutes. He added zero points in 9 more minutes the rest of the way.
Shelden Williams hasn’t been as good lately as he was earlier in the season. He is still missing assignments defensively and it hurt against Al Harrington in this game.
For as bad as Rasheed Wallace shot and played, it does deserve mention that he had 4 steals to tie for the team lead. He is and can be an active defender. That he hasn’t been so more, is problematic. He added 4 rebounds.
Marquis Daniels had the worst plus minus on the team at -14, though I’m not sure that was all his fault. I’d have to go back and look at tape. Nonetheless he shot 3-4 for 6 points and added 2 rebounds.
Brian Scalabrine his required three pointer in an otherwise 11 plus uneventful minutes.