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Hawks Flying High: C’s Lose

 

Well, that was unfortunate.  This game was pretty ugly from start to finish.  The game started rough for both teams and the Hawks got a big boost from Jamal Crawford in the second half , which the C’s responded with sending Shelden Williams out there to show the Hawks the rocks for hands they gave up on.  Here are some bulleted musings with very little material to write home about:

  • In the preagame, Gary Tanguay and Tommy Heinsohn bandied the idea of Tracey McGrady coming to Boston after a buyout from Houston.  I scoffed at the idea then, but getting McGrady would be like getting an infinitely better Jamal Crawford to come off the bench.  I never thought I’d be in favor of getting McGrady, but Crawford killed the C’s tonight and there was no answer offensively.  This is all moot considering the C’s health concerns, but if the C’s play the Hawks again with everyone healthy, I’m still not sure they have an answer for Crawford.
  • On a lighter note, the C’s introduced an new outlet play that I’ll be exploring later on.  It seems like someone on the C’s coaching staff noticed that the Hawks were slow to get back on D after a miss and they exploited it with Rondo streaking up the side of the floor and Perkins rifling the ball, hitting Rondo in stride.  Rondo really used his quickness against a very quick Atlanta team.  One particular instance came when Jeff Teague attempted to keep his head on a swivel, while defending Rondo on the left wing.  Teague got a nice “welcome to the NBA” moment proving his swivel speed to be set at rookie level. When Teague was busy looking at the motion, Rondo crossed him up and took it in for an easy lay up.  Brilliant advantage taking.
  • This matchup between Perkins and Horford could end up epic.  They are both very young, very tough, and very chippy.  They had nearly identical lines tonight, although Perk got the advantage on the glass and Horford got the advantage on the number of baby hooks in the paint.  Seriously, every time I saw it I broke out in cold sweats.  I don’t think I can bear a baby hook in the lane becoming an opponents “go-to” move against the C’s.  Too many painful memories.  Too many re-lived on ESPN Classic (on a related note, I’m currently reading When the Game was Ours and it’s great so far).
  • Ugghh…this game just left a bad taste in my mouth.  I mean, I’m the most afraid of a Hawks v. C’s playoff matchup, but I don’t really think they’d beat the C’s in a series.  Still, I just can’t stand the posturing the Hawks do after every play (and I recognize the hypocrisy Hawks fans so I don’t want to hear it!),
  • Speaking of posturing, Rondo had a very impressive assist to Pierce for a transition three I’d like to mention.  The C’s offense was flowing to maximum capacity/ efficiency and Rondo just adeptly no-looked under hand tossed it to Pierce, only to leave his arm extended like jump shot follow-through.  Hey, if Rondo doesn’t have a strong shot, he might as well be proud of his other strengths (did I say Rondo didn’t have a strong shot? He knocked down two very nice threes tonight.  Alas, all for not).
  • Quite the twilight zone game tonight.  The Hawks out-rebounded and out-assisted the C’s while the C’s out-blocked the Hawks.  Sign of the apocalypse or just another road game in January?  You decide.

Well that’s it for now.  More tomorrow.  Perhaps you’ll read some things about Pierce taking over the fourth quarter offensively for the C’s.  I don’t know, I’m not a mind reader.  But if you do, it will most likely include a play-by-play analysis and a shot chart.  Get excited!

  • Cptn Bubbles

    McGrady? Please McNo. He has the playoff curse. He is uber CHRONICALLY injured. There just is no real dependability there. Seriously, many people have this vision of McGrady as a real force, but he is just way too frail, and we all know how close the word frail is to fail–it is no coincidence. I respect the coach of the Rockettes, Alderman, & there is a reason why he does not want him. He kinda reminds me of a taller, more unhealthy Gilbert without packing the heat.

  • Cptn Bubbles

    I thought the Cs came out flat & complacent in the 2nd half. Conversely, Atlanta looked aggressive. I just don’t think the Cs can jump shoot their way to victory against Atlanta. Even though Josh & Horford can block shots you still have to go inside. Josh & Horford are so focused & aggressive on blocking shots that you should be able to use that against them (ball fakes & take it to their body). You will get some blocked, but you have to keep at it. Josh is also still vulnerable emotionally. Just look at his face after calls. He looks like a ticking time bomb moving closer to the edge. He just can’t stand getting called for fouls, & I’ve seen his whole game go downhill when guys go at him & draw fouls.

    The Cs did not shoot well. Most people, including my little nephew, try to take shots closer to the basket when this happens. Higher percentage & hey, you might get a rebound or go to the free throw line slowing the game down (a great way to change the tempo or catch up).

    I think TA would do a better job on Crawford, but you can’t help off of Crawford. You probably have to treat Crawford like Joe.

    Is it just me or do the Cs look more in control when they persistently go inside? Seems like when they are determined to pound the paint they shoot a higher percentage. They get to the free throw line a whole lot more. The pace of the game stays where they like it. They get offensive rebounds. The other team’s bigs have to sit on the bench in foul trouble. It’s a win win win win win win situation. Of course, I could be wrong again.

  • rondoislove

    I JUST now realized that TA didn’t play today! Wow. This is the first game I’ve watched where I’ve TRULY been frustrated with Sheed. I read CelticsHub every day and unfortunately I’m not able to watch every C’s game, so today I took advantage and kept a very close eye on him while he was on the floor.. and oh my. He was absolutely horrible on D tonight, and shot 1-8 threes! ONE OUT OF EIGHT. Considering he was 5 for 15 overall, shouldn’t he have realized he was 4 for 7 from inside the arc and taken advantage?

    Minus the two 3-pointers, although he did get 11 points, 10 assists and 5 rebounds, am I the only one who felt like Rondo had a very quiet night tonight?

  • steve

    For whatever reason Rondo had little success at penetrating and passing tonight. It seemed the Hawks just backed into the paint and Rondo arrived there each time with no where to go and seemingly no one to pass to. The C’s have so much success when Rondo is able to do this and it hurt them in this game. Was TA hurt? Without the Boston feed you don’t get the Celtic info you’d like during these games.

    Despite the loss I think the C’s can handle the Hawks in a playoff series, especially with home court. You see the Hawks fall in love with the 3 when a couple go down. Then they miss 3 or 4 in a row and lose their lead. The Celtics, except for Sheed, realize how important each possession is, especially at the end of the game.

  • BG

    I absolutely hate the Hawks. I can stand the Celtics losing but something about the hawks always makes in sting a little more.

  • Pingback: Large Saturday Notebook: Jamal Crawford Should Die of Gonorrhea and Rot in Hell, Lester in Memphis, Caution with KG, The Flu Hits Pierce » Boston Celtics Basketball – Celtics news, rumors and analysis – CelticsHub.com

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  • Idaho

    Rondo has to do better against the premier PG’s like Bibby, Davis, Nash with all of the hype he gets.
    In meaningless games against Nash he has his number.

  • Cptn Bubbles

    One other thing which I hope the Cs turn around for next time. I saw a lot of Horford switching out on our guards trying to over play & pressure them back. He can move his feet, but I think Ray & others could have taken advantage of this over aggressive big man trying to out maneuver / out quick a guard. I know the Cs are wily & clever enough to try & draw some fouls from Horford next time when he does this again. Really, it’s more important to try & draw the foul & put Horford (& his tenacious rebounding) on the bench than score. Bigs are vulnerable out there trying to keep up with guards & Horford seems to just love to try & prove himself vs guards so take advantage of it. Usually the refs will call a blocking foul if you can dribble into him without lowering your shoulder.

    It’s also very important to try & draw fouls on Josh who never saw a shot block he didn’t like. Josh gets so unhinged over being called for fouls that you have to try & get in his head with it & take him off his game. Imagine Atlanta without Horford or Josh…

    Like BG, I just can’t stand the Cs losing to the Hawks…. or the Lakers. I don’t like to see the Cs lose at all, but it’s weird. If the Cs lose to the Rockets or Spurs I can handle it better.

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