Post-game Reactions

Boston at Utah
9:00 p.m. EST
EnergySolutions Arena

Update: Reports out of Utah have Mehmet Okur playing, while Kirilenko will sit out due to a calf energy. 1 out of 2 ain’t bad, C’s will take it                           -B Robb

Opposing viewpoint: Salt City Hoops

Offensive Efficiency:

Boston: 107.3 points/100 possessions (15th)

Utah: 110.9 points/100 possessions (6th)

Defensive Efficiency:

Boston: 102.2 points allowed/100 possessions (1st)

Utah: 104.8 points allowed/100 possessions (9th)

Probable Utah Starters:

Deron Williams, Carlos Boozer, Wesley Matthews, C.J. Miles, Kyrylo Fesenko/Paul Millsap

Injury Report

Utah: DOUBTFUL: Mehmet Okur, Andrei Kirilenko

Thumbnail: Boston comes into Utah to finish up a three game road trip that included two tough ones in Texas.  Despite their early season dominance, it could be argued that the Celtics are really playing their best basketball of the season.  This one will not be easy for the Celtics, but the Green may be catching Utah at just the right time.  The Jazz are three and three in their last six games without a win against an over.500 team.  The Jazz are also without two of their more versatile and matchup-nightmare players in Okur and Kirilenko.


Field Goal Percentage

The Jazz lead the league in filed goal percentage at 49%.   Despite the Jazz having some very good players on their team, I’d venture to guess this stat is more a byproduct of shot selection than anything else.  Their star players are more known for playing smart and getting to the line than lighting it up.  Which leads me to my next point….

Free Throw Shooting

The Jazz are second in the league in free throw attempts.  This is largely due to the hard-nose player of any Jerry Sloan coached team- and the fact that Carlos “Bruiser” is a bit undersized in statue but over-sized in grit and heart.  This guy gets in the trenches an gets it done, which usually leads to his opponents bouncing off of him as he powers his way to the tin.

Deron Williams is also a very effective slasher and finisher.  The bottom line is that their opponents have to put them at the line or suffer the consequences.


This again, most likely stems from their smarts than their athleticism.  I don’t watch the Jazz enough to say definitively, but if you were to put a gun to my head, I’d have to say the Jazz get more steals by wisely playing passing lanes than having the quicker hands.


Free Throw Percentage

On paper, this is the Jazz’ Achilles heel.  Especially for a team that gets to the line as often as the Jazz do.   The Jazz are 24th in the league in free throw percentage at 74%.   This bodes well for the Green given that if the game turns into a “grind it out slug-fest,”  the Celtics are well-equipped to put the Jazz away at the line.

Three Point Percentage

The Jazz hover around the league average at three point percentage- which only means that they can knock them down when called upon to do so, but won’t kill you from deep.  While Kyle Korver is killing it from three this season (56%), he has only attempted 86 of them, so he won’t kill the Celtics.  Meanwhile, C.J. Miles appears to be chucking, with the third most attempts on the team and only shooting 34%.


The continuation of Paul Pierce’s dominance. 

Pierce will most likely be guarded by Wesley Matthews and Ronnie Brewer tonight.  Both Brewer and Matthews are nice players, but neither of them are savvy enough to guard Pierce while he’s this hot.  If Pierce has a bad game, it’s on him- unless Kirilenko somehow gets healthy and plays exclusive ball denial on him.

Rondo Hangin’ Tough

Rondo can match Williams’ quickness, but he is no match for his size.  If Williams posts Rondo up, expect double-teams.  The Celtics will need to have quick rotations if they hope to have a chance against this mismatch.

Shelden Williams

Another preview I do, and another team that favors PT for Williams.  Boozer is a big dude and the Duke on Duke storyline writes itself.  Fesenko (at least from the last time I saw him) seems to be on the Michael Sweetney diet and rivaling Aaron Gray for biggest, whitest blob on a basketball court.


Without Okur to spread the floor and Kirilenko to be the mismatch nightmare he is, I don’t really see the Jazz coming out on top.  Call it the over-confidence brewing but the Celtics are playing really well and the bench is due to have big game- or at least a solid game.  The Jazz will definitely keep it close, but the Celtics will eventually come out on top.

Celtics 105, Jazz 98

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  • Jason

    The match-up nightmares being out is huge and a solid point. Okur doesn’t usually scare me, but of course he could go off and in any given game. AK47 is the active pest that always scares me since this team often doesn’t take such players seriously enough and then predictably that player hurts the Cs.

    I disagree about them playing their best ball right now. They may certainly be on the road to their best ball, but that 23-5 was pretty dominant. The recent string is nice, but I don’t think it equates.

  • Banner 18?

    Ronnie Brewer got traded to the Grizzlies at the deadline, then proceeded to tear part of his shoulder and is now out for the season… so it’s just Korver and CJ Miles on The Truth. Also, as of the Jazz’s official page, Okur WILL be playing tonight, but there’s no word on Kirilenko, leading me to believe he’s still out with the bug.

  • Brendan Jackson

    Doh! When you’re right you’re right. The Brewer thing is EXTRA boneheaded. Although I could have sworn it was his hamstring? No?

    Anyways, my apologies.

  • AK-47 is out, according to SL Tribune.

  • What Can I Say?

    This guy is pretty impressed with Carlos Snoozer. Never been a fan.

    C’s get their 5th straight.

  • DeVelaine

    After seeing how this third quarter has started, if we lose now, I’m willing to drop a bunch of blame in Doc’s lap for not calling a time out sooner to stop their run.

  • I love Green

    Ouch 28-13 so far in the 3rd quarter.

  • ihatemarquisdaniels




  • Conall Mac Michael


  • Jay P

    Truely disgusting third quarter. And just when we thought they were getting that form back, and bringing that intensity… it’s the same old team we’ve seen for 3 months.

    Play great for stretches, horrible for one quarter, lose the game.

    That whole light at the end of the tunnel thing… well, it just got a bit darker again.

  • MP

    Another second half-choke job. Atlanta lost, too, so we gave up our attempt to move a game ahead.

  • Jason

    Told you they weren’t playing their best ball of the year.

  • David

    “They’re back seems a little ridiculous now doesn’t it. I realize that this is a blog for Celtic’s fans but you have to be realistic. I also understand that the guys who do a great job with this blog BTW, have to entertain and inform. Many people were ready to claim the Celtic were back to their old selves. The Celtics will never be what they were the year they won the title. Not this year or going forward, I mean with the players they currently have now.

    Since someone said on another post that I just gave a comment without proof to back it up. Let me give this stat line for tonight’s game against the Jazz. Boston starters: 49 points. Jazz starters: 88 points. If there is someone who thinks that Boston can win a series in the playoffs getting 49 points from their starters against a good team. NO WAY! Deron Williams killed Rondo! Let me just say that tonight is just one game, but this is the same old Celtics that we have gotten used to this year.
    Paul Pierce, Ray Al, combine 7-25 from the field. Pp, Ra, Kg just did have anything in the tank tonight. That is the results of a team that depends on older players, the results now and playoffs will be inconsistent play.

  • It is nice to find some more people interested in Free Jazz. Best wishes from freejazz.net in Germany.