After arguably one of the best 1st round games in Celtics history, there’s quite a good bit of analysis this morning on the epic game 2 slobberknocker. Here are some highlights in the roundup:
The Globe takes a look at the historic duel between Ray Allen and Ben Gordon down the stretch, with lots of opinions from the Chicago side.
“We would have loved to win this game and head back to Chicago up, 2-0,” said Gordon. “But we got a split, and that’s tough to do against the defending champs.”
The scoring spree wasn’t the only way Gordon used his veteran influence to lead his team. Tensions flared when Kendrick Perkins backed down Noah midway through the third quarter and drew a foul. As Perkins walked away, Noah followed him and tried to stare him down, earning a technical foul in the process. Gordon intervened, grabbing Noah and pulling him out of the way before the excitable second-year player could escalate the situation.
“I’m happy with our overall effort, even though we did some things throughout the game when we had a couple mental lapses,” said Gordon. “We left everything out on the floor.”
I have to agree with Gordon’s analysis here. It’s tough to be satisfied losing after having a game like that offensively, but this Bulls team just have easily could have been down 2-0 in this series. Yesterday, they were the victims of some stellar Celtic offensive play in the 2nd half, along with some of their own horrific defensive rebounding, yet managed to stay with them in a tough environment on the road.
Speaking of Ben Gordon, Henry Abbott has a great look at Ben Gordon’s hot shooting and whether or not it disproves his research from last week on the “hot hand.”
Steve Buckley, Frank Dell’Apa, and Chris Sheridan all have some well deserved accolades for Rondo’s performance as well. A look at how Doc making things simple likely could have helped from the Daily Dime:
“He was asking all these questions about what he needed to do, and I told him a bunch of stuff. And then when he left, I got to thinking: ‘That’s too many questions,'” Rivers recounted.
“And so when I walked back in the locker room I said to him, ‘Look, you have the keys to the team, just go out and play. And stop asking me questions,’ and I thought the first seven minutes of that ballgame were the best seven minutes I had ever seen him play.”
And finally, it can’t all be good news of course, especially on the injury front. There is not much certainty of the status of Leon Powe’s sprained knee but so far the word isn’t good. He’s questionable for the rest of the series. Discouraging words from Doc:
“The bad news is Leon,” Rivers said. “He’s at the hospital. It doesn’t look great, I can say that, but we’ll find out.”
Powe’s extended absence would be a huge blow for this shorthanded team, the rest of this series. Here’s hoping Scal is as close to a return as the team says he is.