Dwight Howard went off last night. But there was one Celtic he had a small bit of trouble with (via ESPN Stats and Information):
That’s some good work off the bench for Big Baby, whose ability to at least credibly defend Howard allows Kendrick Perkins and Rasheed Wallace to foul Howard when necessary without worrying about fouling out or going to the bench.
Davis, earning $3 million this season and again next season, looks like a very sensible signing. And I’m sorry, but all of you who were suggesting Shelden Williams should play over Davis, well, you were wrong all along.
Some other random thoughts that have been going through my head:
• What would have happened had Paul Pierce missed that buzzer-beater in Game 3 against Miami and the C’s had gone on to lose that game? How differently do these playoffs unfold?
• Can you imagine if the C’s had pulled off the Caron Butler/Carlos Boozer double they apparently contemplated, at least according to Sports Illustrated?
• If I’m reading Rajon Rondo’s shot chart at NBA.com right, that 17-foot jumper he made to put the C’s up 93-90 last night was just the second jumper he’s made from that part of the court all playoffs:
Worth noting: Rondo is 28-of-74 (38 percent) in the playoffs on shots outside that area right around the rim, according to this chart. Some of his runners/floaters must have been close enough to sneak into that at-the-rim zone on NBA.com’s hot spot charts, right?
• Given how well this team has played so far in the post-season, it’s reasonable to ask: Had KG not gotten injured last season, would we be talking about Boston inching closer to its third straight NBA Finals appearance?
Such hypotheticals are ultimately a waste of time and brain power, I realize.
But we’ve got three days until Game 3 in Boston, so now’s the time to think about them.
• Finally, Ben Q. Rock at Orlando Pinstriped Post dips into the Synergy Sports data to see how various Boston big men do defending post-ups and on pick-and-rolls. There are many, many interesting nuggets in Rock’s analysis, including this one on Sheed:
Oddly, Howard might be best served posting [Wallace] up. Wallace allows 0.885 points per possession in these situations and yields points 48.3% of the time. But with the post-up comes the risk. Wallace’s quick hands and savvy enable him to poke entry passes or sloppy dribbles away, and he knows how to pull the chair out from under his man to force a travel every now and again. Those skills explain why 19.5% of post-ups against him result in a turnover.