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The 2010 Celtics Went Out Like the 2010 Celtics

 

Maybe you can take heart in this: The Celtics played like themselves in the most important game of their season, or at least like a hyper-exaggerated version of themselves. They did not lose because they broke character.

All season, the Celtics teetered on the edge of being a one-dimensional team—a team with an all-world defense that could be undone by an average offense prone to turnovers and droughts in the half court.

And the one flaw in that defense was a tendency to allow too many offensive rebounds. Boston appeared to have solved that problem in the playoffs, but in retrospect, that probably had more to do with the fact that Miami, Cleveland and Orlando all ranked in the bottom 12 in the league in offensive rebounding.

The Celtics almost won Game 7 because of their defense and lost it in part because of all of the same things that have cost them games this season.

That is not to denigrate the Lakers. It’s more of a compliment, really. The Celtics struggled to score against elite half court defenses all season, and the Lakers played elite half court defense in Game 7. The Celtics couldn’t protect the defensive glass against good offensive rebounding teams, and no team grabbed a higher percentage of available offensive rebounds in the playoffs than the Lakers. Boston too often failed to take care of the ball against aggressive defenses, and the Lakers, when they are into it, can force a ton of turnovers.

Let’s be clear: The 2010 Celtics were by some measures one of the worst offensive teams to make the Finals in the last two decades. Boston averaged 107.7 points per 100 possessions this season, a mark that ranked 15th in the the league, according to Basketball-Reference. The league average was 107.6 points per 100 possessions, so the Celtics were essentially an average offensive basketball team.

In the playoffs, Boston’s offensive efficiency dropped to about 105.0 points per 100 possessions. That’s not as bad as it looks once you factor in the defensive strength of Boston’s opponents. But even so: That mark ranked 7th among the eight teams that advanced past the first round, ahead of only the Hawks.

Consider this: Since 1990, only eight of the 42 teams that made the NBA Finals had regular-season offensive rankings less than half a point (per 100 possessions) better than the league average that season, according to BR. Those teams:

• 2010 Celtics

• 2005 Pistons (team rating: 105.6 points/100 possessions; league average: 106.1)

• 2004 Pistons (team: 102.0; league: 102.9)

• 2003 Nets (team: 103.8; league: 103.6)

• 2002 Nets (team: 104.0; league: 104.5)

• 1999 Knicks (team: 98.6; league: 102.2)

• 1994 Rockets (team: 105.9; league 106.3)

• 1994 Knicks (team: 105.7; league 106.3)

All season, the Celtics struggled offensively when they could not get out in transition. We should not have been surprised that they did so again when faced with a Laker defense determined to get back on defense, shut off penetration and string Pierce and Allen out toward the sidelines on screen/rolls. Rajon Rondo was the beating heart of this team, but his inability to hit a 16-footer on screen/rolls is still the anchor that can sink an offense lacking a consistent post threat and susceptible to player fatigue.

People will remember Boston’s offense going cold in the 4th quarter of Game 7, and they should. The Celtics were flailing, relying on Pierce isolations and post-ups from Davis and KG on the left block as four tired players stood around on the right side of the floor.

But I’ll remember just as clearly the C’s inability to score even a single point over the first 4:47 of the 2nd quarter, blowing an opportunity to assert control of a game they led by nine when the quarter started.

And the turnovers. All damn season with the turnovers. The C’s coughed it up 15 times in Game 7, and that doesn’t sound like much, considering they averaged about 15.5 per game in the regular season. But Game 7 was an ultra-slow game, with about 83 possessions for each team. Those 15 turnovers work out to a turnover on about 18 percent of Boston’s possessions.

Perspective: The Charlotte Bobcats, the most turnover-prone team in the league, turned the ball over on 15 percent of their possessions this season.

The Lakers’ ability to crash the offensive glass shouldn’t have been a shock, either. In 2008, the Celtics rebounded 74.4 percent of opponent misses, the 8th-best mark in the league. In 2009, Boston rebounded 75.6 percent of opponent misses, the 3rd-best mark in the league.

And in 2010, Boston rebounded 73.8 percent of opponent misses, the 14th-best mark in the league. Paul Pierce had the lowest defensive rebounding rate of his career. Kevin Garnett had his lowest defensive rebounding rate since 1999. Rasheed Wallace had his lowest defensive rebounding rate since 2004. Ray Allen used to be a decent defensive rebounder for a shooting guard; he has fallen off in that regard as he has aged.

None of this is surprising. These players are aging, and their athleticism is declining. You can only get so far on mental toughness and smarts, and you can only win so many games when your point guard comes damn close to leading your team in rebounding.

Is it ridiculous to give up 23 offensive rebounds, as the Celtics did in Game 7? Absolutely. The Celtics have given up that many just once since KG and Ray Allen arrived here—and that was in a March 2008 game against the Sixers, according to Basketball-Reference. They allowed exactly 20 in one game this season and had never allowed 20 in any playoff game before last night.

So, yes, 23 offensive rebounds is an outlier. It’s ridiculous and anomalous, but this version of the Celtics was more likely to let it happen than the 2009 or 2008 version. These Celtics beefed up their playoff defensive rebounding numbers against three teams that don’t care much for offensive rebounding and collapsed once they faced a team that does care about it.

Don’t misunderstand: I am not criticizing Boston’s effort. The Celtics squeezed the most out of their talent, and they came within a a few points of winning the 2010 title because their defense is absolutely other-worldly when it is locked in. Nobody in the NBA—nobody—plays defense like the 2008-2010 Celtics, and they brought that defense to this series and to Game 7. For about 80 percent of the series, the Lakers had nothing on offense. No options, no openings, no apparent confidence in anything.

But that defense, alone, was not enough to win the title. Boston needed something more. Against Cleveland, they had Rondo and Ray Allen brutalizing Mo Williams and KG working the post against Antawn Jamison. Against Orlando, they shot 41 percent from three-point range and rode a couple of monster Rondo games.

Against LA, their offense came up empty. Toss out Boston’s 11-of-16 shooting from three in Game 2, and Boston hit just 22-of-101 three-pointers. They attempted just 21 foul shots per game, down from 25 in the regular season. The team’s screen/roll game fell apart in Games 6 and 7, when the Lakers had their big men jump out on ball-handlers and (sometimes) trap them.

But despite all its shortcomings, this team nearly won the title. And we should obviously appreciate them for that. As fans, we can be proud of their effort and their hellacious defense. But the problems we have seen all season against good teams came to the forefront on Thursday night against the best team.

And so the Lakers are champions, again. The Celtics are runners-up.

The 2010-11 season starts in about 4 1/2 months.

  • joe

    Since nobody else will say it, I will. If perk plays we win that game. I said it yes i did.

  • kehn

    We may be champs, but we had to beat a team with the guts of a champ to do it. Your defense and tenacity were as good as advertised. I know you guys are feeling bad right now, but I have mucho respect for your team’s fight, and I fkn hate your team. Tell Perkins to get better b/c y’all are gonna need him against us next June. See ya then.

  • Jay P

    @joe

    Wallace was the best player the Celtics had for a lot of that game. His post presence and ability to score without the rest of the team having to do much work can’ t be undervalued.

    Maybe Perks grabs a few of those boards better, ya. But LAs defense shut down Bostons Half-court offense, and without those easy buckets from Sheed in the post, this game could have been even worse.

    Perk being out did not lose this game.

  • JayAllDay

    You can look at Perk not playing in a couple different ways, but first off i will not say him not playing is the reason we lost. In 2009 we said the absence of Garnett was the reason for our early exit, but Perk is only a role player( a dam good one)) but only a role player. We had the big three healthy, even the big four if you want to add Rondo. The one thing that i think could have won this game was Doc trusting Nate to give us some scoring in our droughts( Nate only played 4 minute) because in terms of scoring, right know Nate is our second or third best scorer. But in the end the Lakers wanted it more, and those third and fourth quarter lapses that my c’s have had all season finally cought up with them.

  • joe

    @Jay P They had 23 offensive boars and had a 7 point advantage in 2nd chance points. Perk woulda helped immensely. Furthermore, as we all saw in the fourth quarter all we needed was an extra big who could’ve rebounded & defended, Perk woulda help with that as well.

  • joe

    *offensive boards

  • Joe

    Gasol had 8 offensive boards in game 1 as well, when Perkins was playing. I agree with Jay P – it’s easy to point to the things they missed with Perk out, but a large chunk of their offense came from Sheed, especially in building their lead in the first quarter. And needless to say Perk doesn’t hit that three that Sheed hit near the end to keep them in it.

  • http://espn.com travis zen

    im proud of the way Sheed showed up last night..all heart..enduring all exhaustion and pain..hats off to you Sheed..hope you’ll come back..

  • James

    I don’t understand; why don’t you guys mention the refs? What’s to lose? Someone needs to talk about the clear agenda at the end of that game or it’s never going to be addressed. This is how facism works!

    I like this blog because you guys are fans… but lately it’s just been number-filled journalism. Which is great, you work hard and I appreciate it… but c’mon man! We got fucking robbed! And you’re just going to congratulate those actors? It’s horse shit and you and I and everyone knows it…

  • joe

    @Joe i’m talking about game 7 not the other games. the lakers were shooting below 30% at one point, so there were lots of rebounds to be had, and perk is a better rebounder than sheed. in the fourth all we needed was another capable big & we woulda pulled it out.

  • http://espn.com travis zen

    there’s not much we can do about those fuckin filthy refs..the league don’t seem to care anyway with all the complaints..NBA Playoffs have been a big JOKE!!!

  • lakershater13

    Sheed played great. He had to take a seat with foul trouble though. Its hard to get an offense that relys on transition going when we are taking the ball out off of free throws. Even when the lakers hit jump shots you can try to get transition going. Of of free throws no chance. 19-6 in the fourth quarter before we had to foul them in the final minutes. They shot 25-6 in the final quarter after it was 12-11 the first 3 qauters. They “let them play” yes but only for 3/4th of the game. Well they let LA play the whole game. The lakers shot 34% on the night. The extra 20 fts for the game won it for them. If fisher or artest dont hit a couple of big 3s late this game would truly have looked like it was completely handed to the lakers.

  • lakershater13

    This just in the 3 refs from last nights game are planning to retire. Some guy named jack sitting in the front row got his actor buddies together and paid all the refs enough money to hand the lakers the win.

  • Ryan

    Perk may or may not have made a difference. But if we want to go into “what ifs,” what if Andrew Bynum could actually run and jump? Does the series even go to 7? What if Bynum was there in 2008? When he is healthy, they are an even better defensive and more importantly, rebounding team. Bynum had no ability to jump or use his weight to his advantage.

  • Perry

    Without Perk, back on March 2nd, the same line up was out rebounded 46-34 by Detroit, but won the game. It was only twice this season the Celts won a game despite losing the battle on the boards.

    Even with a 13 point lead my instincts were telling me the rebounding disparity would come back to bite us, and it did. Zach is right about the demons of the regular season coming back full circle, but logic doesn’t make me feel any better. I’m quite defeated by last night. It’s the finality of it all, and the mountain of questions that can’t be answered this morning.

    It was about 2:30am when I decided to couch WEEI’s call in show. For some reason I stumbled on to ESPN Classic and there they were…the 94-95′ Celtics lead by Dominique Wilkins. Let’s hope we don’t revert back to that era.

  • Jamie

    Game 7 went just like a lot of the regular season losses did. Build a double digit lead but can’t hold it due to stagnant offensive sets, turnover, and complete inability to control the defensive boards.

    Rebounding was an issue all season and it bit them in the biggest game of the year so it’s not that big of a surprise. When KG grabs 3 boards you know they’re in trouble.

  • Jay P

    @Jamie

    Yes, but this time, it wasn’t due to lack of effort. They just ran out of gas, Doc even mentioned it, this was the first time all season, where they really just looked old. They were pushing and clawing and trying, but they just didn’t have the legs in the 4th.

    Rondo did try and push the tempo, but LA was back everytime, and he can’t run a break 1v 4. That forced half-court sets, and the Cs were obviously gassed, there was less movement, too much iso, too many people standing on the wins watching one guy work and trying to catch their breath.

    It’s a scary thought really, this Celtics team is at its best when they run and Rondo controls the pace, but these guys aren’t going to get any younger, and that philosophy obviously took is toll late in the game. So where do we go now?

  • JMM

    There’s a name for people who whine about the refs in a game like last night’s. They’re called Laker fans.

    Zach nailed all the reasons the Cs came up short.

  • Perry

    @Jay P

    It’s the morning after, but perfectly reasonable to ask what’s next?

    I think we can count on Scal, Shelden, and Quis not coming back. I hope we can count on ownership not shying away from the luxury tax because of its large fan base and a heaping taste of success.

    On the CSN post game show Danny admitted the plan is to skew younger, but we knew that. It’s also no great revelation that Doc won’t be around, as he answered a question about Rondo in the past tense. But the bombshell was Sheed thinking about retirement. If that’s the case Danny has the MLE back. I recall they lost this season’s MLE because of Sheed’s contract.

    Who knows what will happen with Ray – although having his Bird rights may help, but what’s the limit?

    I doubt Pierce opts out, but he may be forced to restructure if he plans on ending his career as a Celtic.

  • James

    This doesn’t make any sense… what were you guys watching!? you really think they let them play all game and then, when the Lakers cut it to 4-5 in the second half (yes, the C’s played in the game too, so they’re partially to blame for not scoring for days at a time) you really think they “accidentally” started ignoring C’s getting hacked? You think they honestly believed that Baby was fouling Gasol?

    It wasn’t a fix like 2006 was a fix, but there was a clear agenda there. If you’re in denial because you love the sport, so be it.

    But it’s stupid to pretend that the refs aren’t part of the game, and a slanted part of the game.

    The Lakers played the refs at least as often as they played basketball in this series, so it’s ridiculous to just ignore it and say it’s pathetic to whine.

    It’s not whining, it’s obvservation of unfair treatment. Pretending it didn’t happen is irresponsible as a journalist, or blogger, or fan, or whatever.

    Sorry I’m punchy, I drank too much gin last night.

  • Jamie

    @James. The celtics changed how they played in the 4th versus the rest of the game. They completely stood around on offense and played isolation 1 on 1 which was not how they scored before that.

    On defense they were reaching, not moving their feet. When they got beat they would foul the guy to prevent layups.

    In the end the old guys were gassed and that was it. Not the refs conspriacy.

  • JMM

    James,

    I’m a Celtics fan who watched them get screwed for much of this series. But, you watch last night’s game, both sides of the ball, and you’ll see both teams getting away with tons of bumps and grabs and you’ll see a few ticky-tack calls on each team.

  • Mac

    I am a Lakers fan and have to say the Celts should be damn proud. They truly drew 110% from themselves and very well could have been the champs.

    It hurts to lose and it hurts to come close. But getting more from what you are than anyone else has to be worth something. It’s no consolation to the players but the fans should be holding their heads up and standing tall, their team did them proud in the playoffs.

  • Sophomore

    Loss somehow hurts more today than it did last night.

    Lots of things to wonder about. For me, it was Doc’s decision not to play the subs for a few more minutes when we were up 13. Would fresher starters have been able to score in the 4th quarter? We’ll never know. He (reasonably) gambled by keeping the starters in, thinking they gave him the best chance to hold the lead. Only they didn’t, and his decision failed. Forty-four minutes is a lot of minutes any night. But with the game as intense as it was last night, that was an awfully, awfully long time to ask guys to play.

  • Jamie

    I think it showed how little trust Doc had in Nate to run the offense. When Nate was in their sets were sloppy and they didn’t get good looks.

  • steve

    I’ve been a Celtics fan for close to 40 years. Became a bigger fan when Larry Bird came to town. In between Bird and 2008 my interest in the team waned a bit. The 2008 Celtics rekindled my love for the team and as fans we were blessed with a championship. This team did frustrate us all season but I love this team. They play like champs and play the right way. Go Celtics. I’m already looking forward to the draft and next season.

  • James

    I understand it went both ways for a while, but it’s WHEN the fouls come that makes a real difference. Getting back to tied and taking the lead… I’m not sure if the Lakers did that with anything but FTs.

    Not a conspiracy- that’s too strong. But an agenda. If the C’s had a 15 pt lead (like they could have, given a few things… Ray Allen) going into the end of the 3rd and the 4th quarter, I doubt the refs would have helped the Lakers. But there’s no way you can tell me there wasn’t some word out there saying, “if they’re within 4 or 5… maybe 7, Lakers get the calls.” There’s just no other way to describe the foul pattern and what they came on.

    So what do we do about it? Retro-video-analysis to look for flops (ie. hundreds of hours of watching Gasol tape for some unlucky intern) and fines?

    There has to be something done to preserve some integrity and aesthetics of pro basketball. It’s the best sport out there but watching guys playing the refs with D. Fisher convulsions is terrible to watch, probably terrible to play, and almost definitely terrible to have to referee.

    I mean, how did it get to this point? Would you ever dare react to a touch foul like Fisher does in a pick up game? You’d be laughed off the court and called a little girl.

  • spencer_66

    @ Soph and Jamie

    I put a lot of onus on Doc last night for his decision making regarding rotation. We’ll never know how much of a difference it would’ve made, but there is absolutely no question in my mind that we were completely gassed over the final 6 minutes.

    Doc has been called a genius time and time again for his utilization of bench players at the appropriate times, but for whatever reason he all but abandoned that trust last night.

    The irony is he preaches doing things “together” and trusting one another. He didn’t trust his bench and I believe that cost them a title.

  • JMM

    James,

    Time to change the tin foil lining in your anti-gamma-ray hat. The game was very well reffed for 48 minutes.

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    Sooooo much to observe in some of these postings.
    There is a lot of denial from some of the Celtic faithful. I’m sure some of the Laker fans would have been the same way. Not me. The Lakers had, and almost did, every right to lose last night. If they did, I would have accepted that the Celtics were the better team last last night. If this were a 5 game series, The Celtics would be champs. In a 7 game series, the Lakers are champs, Who knows how it would’ve ended had we kept playing more games.
    I don’t think it’s fair for anyone to take cheap shots at Sheed saying that Perk would’ve made a difference. Perk may have had a subtle affect in the paint, but he wouldn’t have put the points up like Sheed did. Sheed and KG kept the Celtics alive in the first 3 qtrs. I think the big impact of not having Perk was the toll that it put on everybody else. The Celtics just ran out of gas in the 4th because they had to play too many minutes and started reaching on defense(hence the fouls started to rack up).
    As much as I hate to say it, part of winning a Championship is being capable of staying healthy for the marathon regular season as well as the playoffs.
    Garnett wasn’t 100%, but played well. Kobe hasn’t been 100% since last year, but played “Okay”. Perk, Bynum….they all just gutted it out.
    The refs swaying the game ? The Lakers won by 4, at home. I don’t think there is any surprise there. Nobody expected the C’s to get as far as they did. And granted, they peaked at the right time and were playing the best ball in the East. Unfortunate for them, so were the Lakers on the west.
    Only one team can win. And on this night, it was the Lakers.
    We only shot 30%………… AND WON.
    A championship team finds a way to win.
    The best part is that the core of this team will all be back for next year to keep this thing going.
    Phil will have the opportunity to get his 4th 3-peat. I repeat……4th 3-peat. WOW……….

    TTFN……C-ya next year

  • Jamie

    @Spencer. I guess in the end Doc thought he would ride the guys that got him there which is the big 3 plus Rondo. Problem is it’s hard to ride a bunch of 35 year old guys that much.

    But if it had worked he would have been a genius just like the media loved Doc for leaving the bench in for much of the 4th quarter in game 4. That is why coaches get paid the big bucks. I can’t second guess it that much cause the less of Scal and Shelden I saw on the floor the better.

  • Animus

    Why anyone won’t say this I don’t know. People look at the points in the paint vs free throws for every game. I’m not going to qualify it. Please use your own judgement then comment. It is as obvious a neon lights.

  • Daniel

    “37 FT’s for LA, 17 for Boston… and yet, LA shot 20 threes. So on 63 FG’s they somehow shot 37 FT’s. You’re damn right I’ll play that card! ” From Simmons Live Chat… I thought I was the only one seeing it, thinking I was biais since I am a Cs fan but to James point…come on? Are we serious….The REFS did help. I guess that s what you call home cooking…

  • http://www.celticshub.com Zach Lowe

    Yes, the refs decided mid-way through the 4th quarter to kick-start their conspiracy against Boston, because, I don’t know, the NBA thought the TV ratings for the post-game celebration would be higher if LA won.

    Do I have that right?

  • James

    STOP LOOKING AT FUCKING NUMBERS!

    Watch the damn game people, my god.

    No one should be worried about the FT disparity, as I mentioned. It’s what the calls were on, and when they were called, and consistently for which team that is an issue.

    These goddamn numbers man… no fans any more. Just accountants.

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    The reffing:
    These guys had to shoulder a lot. They’re in the position of not wanting to take the game over and letting the guys play. Not having to foul out a star, or any key player. This worked in the Celtics favor. As Doc says, “be the agitator”. Translation: Go out and dislodge the Lakers from the post until they start calling fouls. In the Celtics defense, some of the banging that they were able to get away with early in the game, were now whistled for in the 4th qtr.
    That’s where the home-court comes in to play with a raucous crowd standing and screaming in the final period.
    It helped the Lakers this year as much as it helped the Celtics in 2008.
    Don’t look for blame. The Celtic players aren’t.
    Only one team can survive the playoffs and enjoy their summer with a victory. This year, it’s the Lakers. The dynasty continues.
    If my math is correct, we’ve been in the finals 7 out of the last 10 years and it’s not over yet.

  • Jay P

    Artest was the key to that game, as painful as it is to say that, given how much crap I’ve given the Lakers for trading Ariza.

    But he was extremely aggressive on both sides of the floor. He made Paul work ragged to get any look at all, and for the first time this series, made him work defensively too. I think the latter part really caught Pierce by surprise, he wasn’t closing out hard on Artest because well… it’s Artest. They’ll live with Artest being the guy to take shots for LA, that’s kinda ideal for them. Unfortunately, inexplicably, and for really the first time all series, somehow those shots just went in. Such is Basketball I guess, sometimes a guy gets hot who wasn’t your main concern, and you have to adjust your defense. The Celtics didn’t do that, Paul failed to step up and take those shots away, and Ron made him pay. Gotta tip your hat to that.

    Bitching about the refs is a coping mechanism, fans can’t deal with the reality that they just got beat, so they gotta scapegoat something. Ray’s took his fair share of that scapegoating as well, the Refs are just another avenue to vent frustration.

    They missed some key calls late, there’s no question. But MOST of the fouls in the 4th were, exactly as you said, just reaching fouls because the Cs got tired and weren’t moving their feet. The only blatantly bad calls were the two (admittedly easy to miss) late in the 4th, on the Gasol travelling, and close-line to Rondo’s face going for the loose ball. The sad truth, is those two calls had a huge impact on how the game closed out, it’s just a damn shame that a great game like that has to be marred by the Refs missing two very key calls.

  • Jamie

    The vast majority of LA’s free throws were in the 4th when Boston was tired and reaching and grabbing. Don’t look at the total for the game, over 50% of their FTs were in the 4th when they were gassed and quit moving their feet.

    As for points in the paint, well when you give up over 20 offensive boards, that is what happens.

  • Daniel

    oh,trust me I agree 100% percent. I saw the same thing you saw. LA got the calls, we didn’t. The damn numbers are a reflections of that. we still loss the game with our TOs and poor rebounding, but I totally disagree that the refs didnt play a part in our loss.

  • James

    Again, man, I didn’t say conspiracy. I clearly said “don’t say conspiracty.”

    But how could you watch those fouls on Gasol, right after he hits KG’s arm, and not think something is up?

    There’s this weird backlash going on now where people are supposed to give benefit of the doubt to the refs… maybe to bury the 2006/Donaughy thing so we can continue to enjoy basketball? I’m all for it.

    But if the Lakers are going to play the refs as part of the game, if they’re going to be involved in the strategy, then how can you report on 82 games and only mention it a handful of times? It’s a real problem, and saying that whining about it is lame is… well… lame!

    If I were on the Celtics all blame would be self-directed; they missed shots, let up lay ups etc. There were things they could control.

    As a fan, it does me no good to point at those things. I do, to be fair, but it’s beyond my control. I feel like I have some control over the officiating because they aren’t players, and the NBA needs to listen to it’s customers at some point… if it gets covered.

    Watch the tape again and look at when they start getting calls. I know it’s not everything, but it helped them complete the come back (we all know those last couple points and taking the lead are the hardest part) once they were within reach.

    So yeah, Zach, that’s when their conspiracy set in. Because that’s when they were in a position to affect the outcome.

    As I said, this is probably not a conversation if the C’s were up double digits in the 4th.

  • Animus

    James, I do look at the numbers you know why? That’s how I relate to people who can’t follow prose based facts. But I’ll give it another shot. When the refs let them play Celtics were leading by 13. When the refs started calling it closer, the Cs got killed. And closer means the Lakers don’t foul on defense. Example: Gasol’s block on yet another blow-by from KG, all wrist. Kobe triple pumps in the lane after flying wildly in, and one. So saying it without numbers so you can follow: the Celtics had more or the same amount of close in shots (can’t say points in the paint anymore) in every single game but less chances to go for a penalty shot (can’t say free throw attempts). Doesn’t make sense. Doesn’t inidcate a conspiracy, but does indicate a bias. An unfortunate sad one that allowed a team that prefers to draw fouls to win. A team the is overall more talented but does not have even a tenth of the grit and heart of the other.

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    Paul Pierce was right:

    He didn’t come back to L.A.

    Artest dogged him all series and made him average at best.
    As an L.A. fan, I never liked Sheed. But damn, he sure earned my respect for the way he came out and battled. Yeah, he takes cheap shots on defense, but the guy gives you everything he has and leaves it all on the court.

  • http://www.celticshub.com Zach Lowe

    Three things:

    1) If LA got some calls, it was in part because Boston was tired and reaching;

    2) If LA got some calls, it may have been partly because they were playing at home. And the Celtics were on the road in Game 7 because they chose to allow their season to play out that way by conceding the regular season;

    3) Through 3 quarters, I think LA fans had more gripes than Boston fans.

    The Celtics lost. The Lakers won. The teams decided the game.

  • Jay P

    @Forum Blue

    Ironically, the same could be said about Kobe, with the one exception of his game 4 explosion, Kobe shot poorly all series.

    Ya he gets 28 ppg, but at what %? Really, his numbers are pretty paltry and the terms of Kobe Bryant.

    Sheed showed a lot of heart, but it’s obvious his body is giving out on him. The tank is empty, I’ll be very surprised if he comes back next year.

  • Jamie

    Come on people the refs did not cost Boston the game. As a 30+ year Celtics fan, I have seen many many games that were badly reffed but last night was not one of them.

    The Celtics lost and that hurts, but it’s not the refs fault in any way. It just sounds like sour grapes to try to say the refs helped the Lakers. They outplayed Boston in the 4th when it counted and I hate to say that.

  • James

    Animus, I’m fully in agreement. Completely, totally in agreement. I just hate when people point at the number totals and pretend that the order in which they were accumulated are irrelevant.

    Zach, is that you on the Twitter machine?

    C’mon dude, explain why it’s pathetic. How do you find it so easy to ignore Pau losing the ball with 1sec left on the 24 and waving his arms like he got hit by a tornado… and the refs rewarding it? Meanwhile, KG actually gets hit and the logical thing happens, dictated by physics- the ball over shoots the rim and his arm mostly stays in place.

    When did it get to this point that the refs need the players to announce when they’ve been hit with their body language?

  • James

    I was writing that last bit before I saw your comment, Zach. So be it.

    But this is a problem that goes far beyond just this game.

    And if we’re going to allow for home court to actually result in points (via the ref) I would rather the C’s start with a damn handicap or something so it’s not so subjective.

  • REfs

    The Refs will not be addressed on this site as long as it is an ESPN affiliate. ESPN looks down upon thier employees who speak anything to fuel the fire that the NBA officials heavily determine outcomes of games.It is as important to them as the NBA to have quality ratings and if the world found out NBA was rigged, ESPN would loose a lot of money. It was clear to anyone without an agenda that last nights game fundementally flawed. NBA blows.

  • James

    For the record, and I say this sincerely because, like I said, I had too much gin last night and it’s making me cranky and I don’t want to come across too sour, this is the best C’s blog out there.

    I think you guys do a great job. I want to write for you.

    I’m emotional because I love the Celtics players and I absolutely detest the way the Lakers play, and I think it’s a step back for the NBA that they won with that style. I’m also always the one yelling when Paul Pierce grazes someone and acts like he’s been cut off at the legs, to be fair.

    I dunno, maybe all this has been going on forever. I started watching the NBA in 2004, so what do I know?

  • spencer_66

    @ Jamie

    When I say bench I mean more of TA and Nate. They combined for just 9 minutes of play.

    Although, I now see that TA was -9 in just 5 minutes. Perhaps that is why Doc left him sitting? I also think he could’ve gotten more minutes out of Big Baby. He had 9 boards in just 21 minutes. In a game where rebounds were so important, Baby was doing his job.

    Hindsight is always 20/20 and it’s easy to second guess a coaches decisions. But what I won’t do is blame the refs. Lakers had far more free throws b/c of their aggressiveness on the offensive end AND the 23 offensive rebounds played a huge role in them getting to the line.

  • PurpleNGold

    How about a little credit to the Lakers Defense?

  • dont_drink_the_koolaid

    REFS:
    I thought the reffing was EXCELLENT last night. I used to dislike Crawford but I gained a lot of respect for him last night – he stayed out of the way and let them play (especially the bigs down low). Celtics got away with a lot early and it evened out late when they were tired.

    WHAT IFs:
    My biggest “what if” play was Rondo’s late steal attempt on Kobe – he just missed steering that back into play. The Cs were coming off a momentum 3 and and lakers looked shocked and scattered. I had flashbacks of Larry’s steal on Isiah…..it felt like destiny for rondo to make that play and kobe to choke it up.

    The other shots that are burned in my brain for life are Artest’s 3, Sasha’s freebies, and Pau’s up&down. I give credit to all those guys for seizing the moment.

    The only Cs shot that really hurt was Pierce’s late drive. He got in the lane but just didn’t finish. He looked gassed and was mostly just hoping for a foul.

    HALF COURT OFFENCE:
    Like you say, all year the same. They tried but couldn’t get the points they needed. Its not like anyone was “off” (ray played great D), they just didn’t have enough matches and gasoline.

    HECK OF A YEAR:
    I’m still beaten up about last night. So close to the hardware after an up&down season. But I couldn’t agree more when you say “The Celtics squeezed the most out of their talent”. They just ran out of gas and got beat by a better team.

    NEXT YEAR:
    Time to blow it up completely. This was a great last stand. Celtic Pride.

  • Tom W

    i actually think Doc made the right decision leaving Tony on the bench. Ray was guarding Bryant SOOO well, there was really no need for Tony, considering that his offensive game is a joke.

    i wouldn’t have argued with more Nate, especially when the offense went stagnant. if he had come in and hit a couple of big threes, this might have been a completely different story.

  • Tom W

    purplengold, i’ll be the first to say it, if i have to. the laker defense was quite impressive. i would say it wasn’t as good as the celtics, though. the Lakers held a fairly pedestrian offense in check. the Celtics held a very, very good offense in check.

  • triple-dot

    James: I am not the biggest fan of the Lakers style of play, but last night they were f’kn manly and played very, very, very hard.

  • http://www.celticshub.com Zach Lowe

    @Refs: Your ESPN theories are ludicrous. None of us work for ESPN. I work for a different magazine not affiliated with ESPN and do this as a (virtually) unpaid hobby.

    @Purple: I give plenty of credit to LA’s defense in the post, so I assume you are talking about commenters.

  • dont_drink_the_koolaid

    P.S. I need to get this off my chest….

    I f*cking hate kobe. He was nervous, scattered, shooting the lakers out of the game and just playing like sh*t for 3 quarters….and he was still cussing out his teammates like it was their fault. They saved his sorry ass last night.

    And then as soon as the game ends he pops on the scoring table and holds up five fingers….like this title was all his (didn’t see fish doing that). Dude, you will never be MJ. He would own you.

    And Bynum will regret this series. Kobe & Phil put his career on the line to pad their rings. Kupchak was probably on the phone with colangelo this morning to try and dump him for bosh (yes, colangelo is the new isiah). Bynum may never see another NBA contract due to hamburger knee….5 years from now he’ll be sitting on his couch watching kobe & phil on TV fawning over each other and waxing off about ‘legacy’….and it will then hit him that he got played like sucka.

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    Fans have been whining about the zeebs for 6 decades. The one constant in sports…Bad Calls and Injuries are an unfortunate part of the game….Call it an occupational hazard and a constant sore spot for fans. It is what it is…If you can’t handle it, maybe reality TV is a safer alternative.

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    More….The best way to avoid bad calls is for a team to stay out of that situation. Win by a wider margin. Avoid Game Sevens in the other guy’s house.

    How many Finals Game Sevens are won by visiting teams?

    It almost never happens. When the Lakers went into the Garden for the Seventh game in 1984, I was hoping for the best, but realistically I knew that if the game was close, the Celtics would prevail.

    Because that’s what happens when you play Game Sevens on the road in a Championship setting.

    Very, very rarely does the visitng team ever win in those situations.

    If you’re still whining about the outcome, I’d suggest you make friends with the reality of Game Sevens and the history of his sport.

    God Knows if ever a team has benefited from Game Seven outcomes at home, it’s the Boston Celtics.

  • Tom W

    koolaid, THANK YOU. i couldn’t agree more. we all knew it, but after last, for ANYONE to put him in the same company as Jordan is just ridiculous. there’s no way, NO WAY Jordan would have allowed himself to get shut down in the biggest game of his career. EVER.

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    In terms of style of play, the Lakers were deemed soft during the 80′s and the pat Riley years.

    Phil Jackson teams have never been particularly finesse oriented. The Lakers got pushed around in 2008 badly because they were playing with 2 power forwards the whole series. Had Bynum been healthy and played, it would have been a different series. I’m not saying the lakers would have won it.

    But just like the Celitcs last night. Without Perkins they were soft around the basket. They couldn’t successfully contend on the boards.

    Playing great defense and having guys that can score are opening table stakes in a NBA Final. Every team brings that much.

    The difference is the boards. Pat Riley was right.

    “No rebounds, No rings!”

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    Kobe > Mj
    Lakers > C’s

    Deal with it Tom

  • Animus

    Folks, I’m not “blaming” the refs. I’m pointing out a bias that has gone one the entire damn series, and the Celtics needed to overcome it this one last time. Did you know in one of the Cs wins they shot 10 FTs total? I mean, really?

    The refs did not put in enormous shots from Artest, Fisher and Kobe in the closing minutes. Nor did they miss key shots down the stretch from Ray, Pierce and a 6 foot put back from Sheed that was sorely needed. Nor did they help for the most part, the Lakers kill the Cs on the boards. I obviously recognize that.

    But seating KG wthe 3 fouls with 5 mins left in the 2nd Qurter was huge. Continually falling for Gasol’s antics was huge.

    Now lastly, Spencer_66, I’m not that bright so tell me, how can the Lakers be more “aggressive” if they both shot dead even in points in the paint?

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    There’s no shame to finishing second or even fifth fiddle to MJ. Kobe is Kobe. There are many things to appreciate about him if you’re a Laker fan.

    But he isn’t at his best on the biggest stage. Never has been. He goes into brain lock, stresses out, over compensates, never gets comfortable.

    But there have been only about four or five guys in the history of the sport that can live up to that challenge.

    And even those guys failed every now and then. Including Jordan. At least early on in his career.

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    @ JP
    I agree 100% regarding Kobe.
    The Celtics had a great gameplan for him and the rest of the Lakers were forced to step up.
    That is Kobe’s downside. He does have to put up 30 shots to get 30 points and that’s only if he gets to the charity stripe. MJ was the same. Kobe rarely shoots over 50% for a game. That’s why we need to focus on offensive rebounds so that we can get more shot attempts.
    One of the rare exceptions was when he scored 81-pts in a game with only 46 attempts.

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    @ Tom W
    I don’t think that anyone in their right mind would say that Kobe is better than MJ. The only problem though, is that Kobe isn’t finished yet.
    Yeah….Kobe was shut down last night. So was everyone else. It was a great defensive battle.
    But hey, it’s a team sport and the strongest team prevailed.
    When Kobe retires, it’ll be an ongoing argument as to who was better, MJ or Kobe just as it was with Larry or Magic, Wilt or Russell etc.
    At that time, we can address their accomplishments in regards to scoring, jewelry etc.
    Who knows how MJ would have fared last night against a tough C’s defense.

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    @animus: Hanging 3 fouls on Kobe early in game two was huge. 3 early fouls on Odom in Game two was huge.

    Handcuffing Fisher with early fouls in at least 3 games (including last night) was huge.

    How do you conclude it being a bigger deal for deciding the series against Boston as opposed to LA?

    Gasol Antics? There were plenty of times in this series where Pau didn’t get a call that he got all year long against practically every other opponent.

    My complaint there was with Gasol. he needed to go stronger, with more authority to the basket with the clear intent of finishing strong. He didn’t do that enough.

    Instead he relied on the fact that he had gotten those body fouls all year long.

    You need to stop focusing on numbers like free throw disparity that statistically don’t correlate to an outcome.

    The one constant number throughout the entire series was that the team that won the rebounding battle, won the game.

    Period!

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    IT’S OFFICIALLY DODGER SEASON AND WHO DO WE PLAY TONIGHT?

    BOSTON

    Nice job for the guys that make the schedule.

    I’d hate to be at that game with my Dodger garb on………………

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    @forumblue: I don’t think it’ll be much of an argument regardless of the fact that Kobe has a few more miles to travel.

    By example, at the start of the 4th Qtr they interviewed jackson and ask the question about the Lakers lethargic offense and Phil alluded to the fact that he mentioned to Kobe that he thought he was trying to o too much.

    You know I can’t even imagine a circumstance in the NBA Finals where Phil would ever have to make that comment to Jordan. or KC Jones to Larry Bird. Or Pat Riley to Magic Johnson. Maybe very early on in their careers.

    But a 14 season veteran? Kobe is Kobe and he has never been at his best on the biggest stage.

    Against the New Jersey Nets or the Phoenix Suns or the Sacramento Kings,

    Yeah fine.

  • Jamie

    Kobe was on Jim Rome’s show and he admitted he was gassed in the 1st quarter. I think we have to remember Kobe is a 14 year vet and played a ton of playoff games.

    Having said that, you never saw Jordan go 6 for 24 in a big game. Nowhere near that.

  • Jay P

    @Forum Blue

    I hope they boo Manny!

    LETS GO RED SOX!

  • Jay P

    There’s no comparison between Kobe and Jordan. Jordan was the greatest play/shot maker in the history of basketball, hands down, no contest.

    He wont 6 championships, and was MVP all 6 times. Kobe has been MVP once. Once.

    Kobe benefited from far greater supporting casts (Shaq, Horry, Gasol, Bynum, Ariza) then Jordan, who never played with a truly dominant inside presence (no knock at Rodman, who was an amazing rebounder/defender, but Jordan never had a 7ft monster to play inside/out with) and was relied on to make everyone around him better.

    Jordan came up big in every big game, every single time. We’re talking about a guy who once played with the flu, a fever well over 100, was getting fluids in time outs, nearly fainted multiple times, and still put up 50.

    Kobe is a fantastic player, and I’ll say he’s the best play/shot maker since Jordan. But Jordan is in a class so far beyond anything, he will never be equaled. Ever.

  • James Patrick

    As a Celtics fan in L.A., it’s tough. You’d think the Celtic were pummeled the way the haters are talking about the game. But I am so proud of my Celtics and the way they fought short handed. I wasn’t expecting them to win, I was hoping they’d win and they almost did. But Here I give you my observations of Laker fans throughout this series (direct quotes i might add!)…

    Game 1 – CELTICS SUCK! WHOO HOOO!!! OVER IN 4 CELTICS HAVE NO CHANCE WITH THE LAKE SHOW!

    Game 2 – CELTICS WERE LUCKY! AND THE LAKERS PLAYED TERRIBLE. HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THE CELTICS. RAY ALLEN GOT LUCKY. WE’LL SWEEP YOU IN BOSTON.

    Game 3 – CELTICS SUCK! TOOK IT TO YOU ON YOUR HOME COURT! IT’S OVER!!! LAKERS ARE GONNA SWEEP YOU AT THE GARDEN!

    Game 4 – SO IT’S TIED. WHO CARE’S. I DON’T EVEN CARE ABOUT BASKETBALL. JUST WAITING FOR FOOTBALL TO BEGIN. SO WHATEVER. NO IT’S NOT A GOOD SERIES. LAKERS PLAYED LIKE SHIT. NO IT’S NOT A GOOD GAME. LAKERS LOST SO BE NICE (like they’ve been nice to me? LOL).

    Game 5 – Suddenly, I’m very concerned about my Laker loving friends. Can’t seem to get ahold of any of them. Wow, such a odd occurrence! People aren’t returning my emails/texts/Facebook messages. Hmm, I hope they’re all okay. Then finally…
    WHATEVER. WHO CARES. CELTIC’S ARE JUST LUCKY.

    Then I notice something quite fascinating. All those Laker car flags people had on their cars are suddenly missing?! Where did they go? What happened? It’s not over yet!

    Game 6 – CELTICS SUCK! EAT SHIT WE BLEW YOU GUYS OUT! NO IT DOESN’T MATTER YOU LOST YOUR STARTING CENTER BECAUSE WE BEAT YOU SO BAD!

    All those Laker car flags. Yes, you guessed! Back out and waving ever so proudly!!!

    Game 7

    1st quarter – AUGH, C’MON L.A.! IT’S NOT SUPPOSED TO BE LIKE THIS!!!

    2nd quarter – MAYBE I’LL CHECK MY EMAIL, MAKE SOME CALLS. IF THEY DON’T TURN IT AROUND SOON I’M GONNA GO HOME!

    3rd quarter – I’M TURNING THIS OFF. F#$K AUGH FINE!!! TAKE IT BOSTON. YOU WON. F#%KIN BS!

    4th quarter (beginning) – WE SUCK, (and I quote) U GUYS DESERVE TO WIN. I GIVE UP ENJOY THE VICTORY AHOLE.

    4th quarter (5 minute mark) WAIT WAIT, WHAT?! THEY’RE COMING BACK! (drunkenly, something that sounds like…) LET’S GO LAKERS!

    4th quarter end – Lakers win – LAAAAAKERRRRS!!!! CELTICS SUCK!!! OH THE SUCK!!! THEY WEREN’T EVEN IN THIS GAME WE OWNED YOU! OH THE CELTICS SUCK! OH YEAH LAKERS! NOW LET’S GO BURN DOWN SOME STUFF, CAUSE TROUBLE AND GET ARRESTED! YAYYYYY!

    Friday morning – every other car in town, even the mail cart on the fox lot, proudly waving a laker flag.

    and people wonder why i hate fair-weathered Laker fans. LOL and on that note, see you next year!

  • Animus

    @Dave: of course rebounds are important if not the most critical statistic of a win-loss decision. And of course whoever won the rebounding battle won each game this series. Those are facts. Great. But in a game where everyone was shooting tight, were even put backs weren’t dropping, 20 extra trips to the stripe was the much bigger factor.

    Think about this: if the Lakers could have actually shot FTs somewhat respectably, it is a blow out. Even with a +12 rebounding edge it came down to the last minute. In THIS game, the FT discrepancy was the deciding factor, not the rebounds. Even in BOS wins, at least two if I recall, there were also huge discrpencies.

    These aren’t disclaimers. These are despiters. Because Cs won 3 games this series despite bad calls. Calls which were bad, admittedly, on both sides fairly often, but do you not understand that lots of fouls favors the finesse team? Is that so hard to understand? While the Lakers may have more talent the better team did not win yesterday. Sorry.

    A team full of heart and pride and grit and toughness was felled by whistles. That is truly sad. I hope Lakers fans are proud of Gasol and Fisher, crying to the refs so that they can cry after buzzer. I remember when KG was still elite, and he spanked everything and everyone in his path, how he used to flop around and complain and try to draw fouls…oh wait, I don’t. I mean has he even ever tried to draw a charge?

  • Jamie

    I disagree the free throws were more important then the rebounding. If the Celtics had managed the defensive boards, especially in the first half, instead of being up by 13 in the 3rd they would have been up by 20-25 and the game would have been over. The 4th quarter free throws never would have come into play.

  • Jay Cutler

    Honestly reading through these comments is making the loss even worse. I can’t blame the Laker trolls for, well, trolling here. Look what they’re doing to their own city.

    Alas we have to listen to 1.5 months of “Is Kobe Bryant FINALLY better than MJ or is he still ONLY just as good?” from the all star slobberfest of Marc Jackson, Magic, and LA Adande.

    I would at least have been heartened if Pau had won MVP. I honestly thought he deserved it. When he wasn’t busy covering up for Kobe’s ill advised shots he was absorbing punishment from the Celtic big guys. Guess what? The only reason Kobe went ‘off’ in that 3rd quarter and managed to score as much as he did is because he stubbornly “tried to do too much” – as Phil Jackson said – and kept the ball OUT of Pau’s hands and OUT of the flow of the triangle offense.

    Don’t get me wrong: Bean Bryant is great but we should really be asking – if you were completely honest about what Pau does with the touches he gets against the elite Celtic defense – if he is more skilled than Pau Gasol.

  • Jamie

    You could make a really strong case for Gasol as MVP. Look in the games that Boston won it was because they shut down Gasol, his number were much better in LA’s wins.

  • http://espn Forum Blue

    @ James Patrick
    As a die-hard Laker fan, I agree with you 100% in your reference to the pseudo-casual-front runner-flag waver Laker fans.
    It’s embarrassing to us die-hard fans that stuck with them through the years of Divac, Mel Counts, Elmore Smith etc.
    Even Phil calls them “Flag-ots”.
    It was a great series and, with the exception of game 6, any of the other games with a break here or there, or a basket or free throw here or there could’ve went in any direction. But with that said, still all of the haters come out and try to deprive the Lakers of what they’ve earned by blaming the refs, citing conspiracies etc.
    It seems like everybody is looking for reasons as to why the Celts lost instead of just congratulating the winners. Maybe it’s just because it’s the Lakers.
    If it were Phx or OKC, would it be different ?

  • steve w

    Forumblue, you are wasting your time. You’re not gonna convince the die-hards. When it hurts this much, people have to find outlets. One outlet is blaming ‘higher powers’ for players’ failures. We see it with Laker fans after losses, too. Let them mourn. They know in their hearts, as we do, that the better team won, even if it won’t come out of the keyboard onto the screen.

    And anyway, don’t we all remember the 51 free throws the Celtics shot at home in game 7 in 1984? Anyone want to talk about that?

  • Jim MacIndoe

    I just would like to say that these guys made it to a game seven when most of us including myself thought that was next to impossible based on the results of the second half of the season. Doc please do not retire. You do have the heart of a champion. Thanks Celtics for a great run. Win or lose next year we will be there!

  • I love Green

    I don’t like how some people are saying we should blow up our roster. We draft for the future, sign 1 or 2 key free agents, and with Rondo, Perkins, and Big Babys improvements we should be back. The Magic will be the same team, and the Cavs could be absolutely horrible or just a little different.

    Nobody else will be able to get really good in this offseason to catch up with us. I think it’s possible that we get back next year.

    and PLEASE DOC STAY! He’s a great postseason coach, and I thought outcoached the zen for majority of the series. We need him back now that Thibs is gone.

  • Sophomore

    Doc did the right thing resting everybody up and getting them healthy during the regular season, but if ever we needed proof that the regular season matters, this was it. With home-court advantage, we win this series.

    Not taking anything away from the Lakers – they earned that advantage – just pointing out that we had to go uphill because of the way we played the season.

  • Mike

    I love how the celtic fans who are sore losers can’t stop whining about the whistles. I assume since you feel so strongly about foul calls you don’t think the celtics deserved their championship from 2008 when for the series they shot 21%(34) more freethrows than the Lakers. In the first two games they shot 27 more freethrows than the Lakers.

    So considering your stance on freethrows it must hurt to know you got a championship you didn’t deserve.

    Now, as for me. I’m of the opinion that sometimes one team fouls more than another, and in a 7 game series, pretty much everytime the better team wins including in 2008, 2009, and 2010.

  • Animus

    ANd yeah, while I hate the lakers, hate the refs for one-sided reffing when it counted, and hate the bird-looking crybaby mofo to begin with, Gasol was the real MVP. Bryant didn’t win a single game for the fakers. Everyone saw what happens when KG runs wild over the previous series (especially MIA and CLE). While Gasol clearly couldn’t d a motivated post game 2 KG (post Game 1 actually except he wasn’t allowed to play in Game 2), neither could he be stopped on the boards or offensively.

    While at minimum neutralizing and more precisely advantage over KG for most of the games he was the MVP. Artest neutralzing Pierce most the games and then fianlly waking up offesnively in Games 6 and 7 was mammoth also. He is probably runner up MVP with his Kobeness a distant 3rd. So there. A Cs fan telling it like it is. Yeah Kobe hit some ridiculous shots to keep them in games but Gasolina’s consistency and facial expressions allowed them to even be in a position to have the refs give them the extra necessary free throws.

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    I just heard an interview with Scal . . . he’s an arrogant f%*k. He reminds me of everything I hate about your team. And for the record I wouldnt take things here If I hadn’t heard him, but here we go:

    The Cs are the most shit talking , disrespectful, arrogant a$*holes in the league. They make me physically ill. Allen at the espys . . . most of Garnetts interviews . . . Pierce in Game 2. It’s all b%llshit, you can’t back it up.

    It makes this all the more sweeter. Not only did we go 7-4 against you guys since 2008, we had all the Cs crying like the b&^ches that they are last night. But the most satisfying thing is that we just made sure your team gets dismantled over the summer . . . It’s over. . . no more big 3 and no more Doc. . . . you guys are gonna suck again for another twenty years.

  • Sophomore

    @I love Green – It’s hard to see this group winning it all when they’re a year older. The injury bug hasn’t been kind to the big 3 and it’s not likely to ease off. Where’s the offense going to come from when we’re facing a championship-level D? As Garnett slows down and Pierce slows down and Ray Allen … well … does what he did this series? Perk isn’t a scorer and BBD is a career backup.

    I’d like to believe. Who do you think we could add for the money we have? I don’t see anybody who’d really make a difference.

    All that said, it might be better to be a longshot at the finals for one more year than go into full-scale rebuilding mode. Just that I think those are the choices.

  • steve w

    What’s really funny is how certain Celtics fans have devolved from being Laker haters – an honorable tradition – to being Kobe haters. You really think we care that you don’t think Kobe deserves the MVP, LOL. I love that he upsets you so much.

  • Animus

    You know what’s even funnier, losers who post on the other teams site. Get a life you pau-ggot.

  • Sophomore

    Lakers fans – this is a place people come to talk about the Celtics. Fans of other teams are welcome, but not if they only here to insult us. Please don’t come into our house to make a lot of noise and break all the furniture. Thank you.

  • steve w

    Hahaha. Pau-ggot, that’s a new one. Take care.

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    @Sophomore . . . never said anything about you bostonians as people. . Strictly talking about your basketball team. I’m certain although you don’t like what I said . . . You see the truth in it. Let’s leave it at that.

  • Jay P

    This is a Basketball blog for the Celtics, if you insult the team, it’s taken as a direct insult on individuals here, so there’s no difference.

    Now please go back to Forum Blue and Gold, where, in my experience posting on that site, even they wouldn’t tolerate your complete idiocy in commenting.

    Zach, Brian, Brendan, for the love of god, please put in a comment moderation policy.

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    The Game Six 2008, chest bumping, pour it on by 40, total celebration at the Laker’s expense in Boston makes it hard to feel anything other than a bit of glee for the 2010 Celtics, when Doc drones on about the tears in locker room. Yeah, heartbreaking!

    Coming back from down 3-2 to win the series is so sweet on so many levels especially when I think about how the Celtics beahved after Game Six in 2008.

    The truth is the dominance is over. The monkey is off our back. The Celtics have sominated anything when it comes to the Lakers since Bill Russell removed his number 6 jersey 40 years ago.

    And it’s Kupchak who turns out to have had the foresight to build a multi-title championship team. Not Ainge and the Big Three.

  • http://yahoo shut_it_up.

    Lakers Fan needs to get his head back in Kobe’s lap.

  • http://www.truecloud.com Dave

    Come on!

    It’s the day after a 7 Game Final.

    No harm intended and we won’t be staying all that long.

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    Just the summer :)

  • Animus

    Mighty Cupcheck and his foresight to build a multi title team? Are you kidding me? Wasn’t for KGs knee last year, we could have just as easily been going for a threepeat as you were going for a repeat. God can’t you not look at things with an ounce of perspective? Freakin pauggots.

  • BunkerHillG

    Zach, thanks for all the great post through the season. On to the next…

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    @Animus . . . Yes we can look at things with an ounce of perspective. From my perspective here your disposition merits thinking about changing your screen name to Anus.

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    AND YES ZACH . . . GOOD WORK THIS SEASON MAN.

  • Animus

    Again I ask why are you here, to rub in it? I didn’t throw any rocks at your damn bus in 08. Go away. You are intimidating me and now I’m scared and may cry.

    Fisher style.

  • http://dd@dd.com LAKERS FAN

    @Anus

    Maybe you should do it Big Baby Style. And throw in a little drool as well.

  • red aurbitch

    bLAh! bLAh! bLAh!
    It’s always an excuse with you people!
    You couldn’t have asked for the game to be any more your style, ugly dirty basketball, and you got beat at your own game. Meet you again for the rubbermatch next year, if you guys aren’t in the lottery hunt again that is.

  • James Patrick

    Who, as a Lakers fan, has time in their day to come to a Celtics blog just to give us $hit? It’s like last night, I congratulated the Lakers fans I know and there’s just a few that are so bitter STILL and wanted none of it, they just wanted to rub my nose in it. Could it be because they know deep down we were playing without Perk? So they bring up the whole, well Bynum was hurt! He wasn’t on crutches now was he? Or could it be that we were dominating last season until KG went down? The fact is, they didn’t beat us, we lost. For a variety of reasons. I have a little more respect for them today, but in the end, You didn’t beat our starting five Laker nation. And as far as I’m concerned, you only have 11 titles. I don’t see 15 gold banners hanging at staples. just 10.

  • thugfromla

    This is to damn funny to me… everyone just stop!!! The Refs didn’t cost the Celtics the ring, Perk really wouldn’t made any difference (If anything Sheed did a better job minus the rebounds) this was an all out war between two of the best franchises in sports IN SPORTS LADIES AND GENTLEMAN. Let’s all appreciate this because it might be another 20 years or so before the Lakers and Celtics meet in the finals again. as for all the trash talking that’s what really makes this rivalry what it is today is because of the fans. we L.A. Fans can’t stand you Boston fans and you Boston fans can’t stand L.A. fans so for you who are I wouldn’t say crying or bitching let’s just say complaining about L.A. fans rubbing it in of course we are you Boston fans would be doing the same thing as well. That’s just the way things are except them.

    Here’s to another Lakers vs Celtics finals next year!

    Great Job C’s

    GO LAKERS!

  • showtime24

    whats up now celtic fans and give me that perkins bs analyst’s even said hes wasnt doing much anyway and bynum was hurt yes and no not on crutches but hey neither was perkins he was jumping on the sidelines at every call against the celtics in the 1st. he should of sucked it up like bynum did maybe uyou would of had a chance who knows but i give boston props paul pierce didnt fake an injury this time he just got beat and out worked he got arTESTed and FAILED he should join us you know at heart he wants to be a Laker everyone does

  • showtime24

    and as for TRASH TALKING KEVIN GARNETT WHAT NOW?????????????????????? 08 was PURE LUCK even MICHAEL JORDAN said the 2008 Celtics got LUcky at least thats what GAY ALLEN said So you all got Lucky maybe 10 20 years from now boston can try again ..

  • James Patrick

    Laker fans continue to discount Perk’s abilities and what he meant to us. Sheed stepped up, but there isn’t one Celtic fan wouldn’t have preferred Perk’s big body in there. Gasol wouldn’t have had the game he did, that goes without saying. It’s not always about points, sometimes it’s just about presence.

    And please can we put the Paul Pierce faked his injury to bed?! I mean, Laker fans beat that to death! Who the f#$k cares?! Maybe he did. Were the Lakers that sorry in ’08 not to get past it? I guess they were because they lost the game and their fans are still complaining about it like it cost them the series. Please…

  • Mark

    First of all, from a 48 year L.A. Laker fan (my brother was a Celtic fan so I feel your current pain) BIG TIME CONGRATULATIONS!!! At the outset I felt that it would be a truly historic, extraordinary accomplishment to beat the 3 other best teams in the league in back to back to back 7 game series. Let’s face it….that’s a load…too much has to go just right for too long and too much has to not go wrong for too long against really good teams. What we all saw was that at the end of the road, after almost everything had gone right, Perk went down- could happen anytime, but why then? Then the toll of the long grind and being forced to play any incredibly emotional energy sapping game without one of the fundamental players on the team left the rest of the team drained and exhausted, one quarter short of the crown. It hurts…I know, I remember Frank Selvy and I was at the balloon game (looked up and just wanted to die) so I know it hurts. Just know that your team gave everything it had and exceeded everyone’s expectations other than their own, which is why they are a great team and deserve nothing but kudos from everyone….the Boston fans who through rocks at our team bus in 08 and mocked us in 85…not so much. Hope to see you again in 2011.

  • John

    Rivers said that Boston didn’t have a chance to defend their title with their starting line-up intact. What a bunch of ****. If we are talking about the starting line-up healthy and playing the entire series then Boston’s 2008 title is in question. The truth is, Boston has never beaten a healthy Laker team. Boston lost one person from their starting line-up for one game, the 2008 Lakers lost one for an entire series. What a bunch of ****!

  • Coach smitty

    The Truth: We lost game 7 and alot of other games because? Doc changes what is working and, starts that BS isolation with Pierce. If pierce has the ball more than 5 secs he either commits a turnover or takes a stupid ass shot. When we were up by 13 and I saw Doc, switch to isolation with Pierce, I almost started to cry. In a span of 5 possesions, the lead went from 13 to 4, and the momentum swung, period. 1st possesion pierce stupid shot LA rebound, 2nd possesion pierce stupid shot LA rebound, 3rd possesion Rondo had the ball, kicked it to pierce who hit a 3 pointer, 4th possesion back to isolation pierce turnover, 5th possesion pierce stupid shot LA rebound, gameover!!!!!
    If you don’t believe me go back watch the tape and, tape of games earlier this year, same thing everytime!!!!!
    Now, this is also the reason we get killed rebounding, doc has a forward taking stupid ass shots, everybody else is spread out, nobody near the basket, no second chances. Watch the tape,
    its so simply a JV coach could pick this out.

  • Coach smitty

    Oh by the way, when Phil Jackson made that comment about the Celtics blowing leads. Go back and watch the tape, Before that Timeout, Doc had switched to isolation with pierce. Our 12 point lead vanished because of stupid shot selection/turnovers by pierce, and being spread out for no offensive rebound chances, Im not a hater, watch the tape.

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  • http://espn.com Larry Wolf

    Great series, great heart by both teams. I think Boston finally ran out gas. The question is will this great Celtic team decline as the Bird, McHale, and Parrish Celtics did while the Lakers continued to win championships. The Lakers look ready to contend again. Ainge needs to make a few good moves to insure the Celtics stay in the hunt.

  • GeniusC

    All im gonna say is that when we didnt have Bynum in 08 you Boston fans said he wouldnt have made a difference, and Bynum is a bigger offensive and defensive threat than Perkins is. So this notion that Perkins wouldve changed the outcome of this game….. well actually its spot on, you wouldve lost 83-76 instead cuz Rasheed Wallace wouldnt have been in the game to make that lets just throw it up and see what happens 3 lol….. Boston SUCKS…..Offensively lol

  • winningtime328

    @James Patrick and the likes…

    You say you congratulate and give respect to the Lakers, but add in the “we didn’t have Perkins” bit. That shows zero respect. The ’08 Lakers didn’t have Bynum or an acclimated Ariza, but I’m not going to use that as an excuse — The Celtics were the better team, and deserved the title. To be fair, its true that the Celtic starting 5 have yet to lose a series. However, of the 6 games played, there were only 2 games where one team had obvious control of the game, while the rest were close games. In games 1 and 6, the Lakers were in complete control. This isn’t speculation, it happened, and it’s a fact. It’s wishful thinking to think that Perkin’s 6pts, 6reb, 1ast, 0blk average for the series would have been better served over Sheed’s 11pts, 8reb, 2ast, 2blk, 1 3ptr starting line. Sheed put up a great final game, setting the tone early and allowing the cushion that Boston had. And if you really wanted to get into it, you’ve got to be honest with yourself… who would make the bigger impact? Bynum, a 7ft 20/10 big man when healthy — or Perkins, a 6’10 10/8 center when healthy. C’mon, let it rest. The Lakers are repeat champs. The only other teams to accomplish this feat in the last 40 years are the Bulls, Pistons and Rockets — all known as great dynasties. The current Lakers may be hated by many, but will go down in history as another great dynasty who defeated Boston’s heralded Big 4 along the way. Eat it James Patrick. Thanks.

  • winningtime328

    BTW, what really killed Boston’s chance to win was their bench. There is ABSOLUTELY NO WAY that Sheed, Davis, Robinson, and Allen can replace the likes of Posey, Powe, Brown and House — just no way. I’m in no way saying that Boston should’ve kept Posey and Brown. I’m strictly talking from a production standpoint. Those 4 guys literally maximized their potenital back in ’08, and literally the best bench I’ve ever seen. They all came off the pine with max energy, effort, hustle, and clutch clutch clutch (can’t emphasize it enough) shooting.

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