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Game 11/82: Wizards (3-6) @ Celtics (8-2); Open Thread

 

Washington at Boston

7:30 P.M. ET

He's baaaaaack!

TD Garden

CSNNE


Offensive Efficiency:

Boston: 105.4 points/100 possessions (11th)

Washington: 98.3 points/100 possessions (27th)

Defensive Efficiency:

Boston: 99.1 points allowed/100 possessions (6th)

Washington: 104.3 points allowed/100 possessions (12th)

Probable Wizards starters: Al Thornton (SF), Andray Blatche (PF), JaVale McGee (C), Gilbert Arenas (SG), Kirk Hinrich (PG)

Thumbnail:

Their beatdown of the hapless Raptors last night notwithstanding, the Wizards arrive on Causeway Street tonight primed to get smoked by a rested Celtics team better at almost every aspect of the game.

Reasons To Watch

If the outcome seems almost predetermined, there are plenty of other reasons to tune in for this one tonight. You know that’s true because I’ve used a lot of exclamation points below:

-Revenge! The Celtics took it on the chin from the Wizards in their last regular season meeting in April. Remember that one? The Celtics were deep into their second half funk, playing listless basketball and enraging message board posters all over the interwebs. Andray Blatche dropped a 31-point, 11-rebound night on the scowling visage of a still-recovering Kevin Garnett. You think KG and the Celtics have forgotten this? I don’t.

- Delonte! West begins his second go-around with Celtics tonight, after serving his 10-game suspension for expressing his full public support of the second amendment. A fan favorite during the 18-losses-in-a-row era, Delonte could really kick the bench mob to another level. He’ll likely be paired with Nate Robinson in the backcourt, freeing up Robinson to do what he does best – score. As well, West’s steady hand at the point should give Rajon Rondo some additional rest, if not tonight, then as he gets back into game shape. Plus, keep an eye out in the event Doc Rivers uses West to back up the 3-spot tonight, with Marquis Daniels unavailable. Seems like those minutes should go to Von Wafer.

- Rookies! John Wall may suit up for Washington, assuming his sprained ankle can hold up. Rajon always gets way too up against the top point guards in the league, to the point where it sometimes affects his game. But if Wall’s less than 100%, expect Rondo to treat him like a shark treats a bleeding middle-aged woman in the middle of the ocean. That’s a metaphor, by the way.

-More Rookies! Avery Bradley may suit up for Boston. He may even play, especially if the Celtics are way up at halftime. Same with Luke Harangody.

-Phoning It In! Your Celtics, knowing how much you love drama, have shown a tendency to turn big halftime leads against bottom feeders into close games. I know, I know – that was last year, when the team was all banged up. And this is 2010-11 and the team is fully healthy.

Oh wait.

They’re not fully healthy?

Hmmm.

Maybe we better do some more analysis. Meet me after the jump.

WHAT THE WIZARDS DO WELL:

Get Out In Transition: The Wizards turn their opponents over more than any team in the league besides Memphis. They’re also 5th in the league in block rate. That’s a heady combination, with Wall running the point and blazing up and down the court. If he plays tonight, watch for a back and forth high-turnover game (the C’s are 6th in Opponent’s Turnover Rate). If he doesn’t play, all bets are off on this front.

He's huuuuuuurt!

WHAT THE WIZARDS DO POORLY:

Score: Despite Wall, and Flip Saunders behind the bench, the early returns on the Wizards offense are poor. They’re 27th in efficiency and breaking down the individual components of that figure does them few favors. Without Wall, they could really struggle to score tonight. Hell, even with him they could struggle to score.

PLAYERS WHO MAKE ME WORRY:

Kirk Hinrich – Rondo and Ray Allen is usually a huge advantage for the Celtics, but the Wizards will start either Hinrich/Arenas or Wall/Hinrich and neither combo is an obvious pushover. Hinrich always does a great job covering Allen and had a solid game last night against the Raptors. From our friends over at Truth About It, the excellent Wizards blog:

With John Wall sitting out for the first time in his young career, Kirk Hinrich moved over to the point position and played 39 minutes of rock solid basketball against the Toronto Raptors on Tuesday night in a Wizards 109-94 win. Displaying the attention to detail that allows him to impact games despite average athleticism and skill level, Hinrich routinely made the hard rotation, the sharp pass, and the clever read on his way to a double-double delight — a 13 point, 12 assist, four rebound and two turnover performance.

PLAYERS WHO DO NOT MAKE ME WORRY:

Anyone matched up against a motivated KG. Which I think we’ll see tonight.

WHAT WE WANT TO SEE FROM BOSTON TONIGHT:

Dominance. Rest for the starters in the second half. Delonte fitting in well with the second unit. What Von Wafer can do given real minutes. Appearances by Bradley and Harangody. And for pure entertainment value – let’s aspire to a ridiculous technical foul so Tommy Heinsohn can go nuts.

Enjoy the game, everyone.

PREDICTION:

Boston 107 Washington 95.

  • zebulon

    Awesome post. One of the best game primers I've ever read.

    Can't wait for the delonte/nate backcourt to absolutely dominate. It's gonna be beautiful.

  • KBA

    LMAO to Tommy going nuts on a crazy (or sometimes an obvious) foul..

  • MDftw

    McGee is someone Rondo and the rest of the Cs should beware of when they are attacking the rim…. he jumps at head fakes though so hopefully Rondo will school him with his signature ball fakes

  • MDftw

    I predict a strong game from the Cs and an especially good game from Delonte

    He impressed me the most out of all the Cs in the preseason and I know hes amped for his debut

  • TedL – Sophomore

    The Delonte West era begins.

    WE ARE ALL WITNESSES.

  • CG12

    The only way we'll see both Bradley and Gody is if a regular member of the active roster up to this point is inactivated. Bradley probably won't dress.

    • CsFanInArkansas

      Could they not tab Quisy "inactive" ???

  • Morpheus

    I hope Bradley plays tonight…..he's got great potential so i hope we'll be able to see some of it in action

    Delonte…. it's good to have you back

  • CsFanInArkansas

    On a completely unrelated note, there's a video on the right (ESPN NBA videos) entitled "Does Kobe Cross The Line In New Ad?" – which is a clip of ESPN's First and 10 crew talking about Kobe Bryant holding an assault rifle in the new Call of Duty VIDEO GAME commercial…

    I was just wondering if there was any way to create a policy on CelticsHub by which all TMZ-esque "NBA news" that's not related to our green machine would be blocked…like, a way to keep our site clean from all the BS that Celts fans don't care to see – a site that's purely Celtics. Even though it's the captian of the LA Lakers, I'd rather be making fun of Chris Bosh and LeBron than watching a debate on whether Kobe was politically incorrect or not to participate in the Call of Duty commercial. Which brings me to my next point – there's a video called "Like a Bosh" that is 100% making fun of Chris Bosh. Look it up if you haven't already seen it. It's quite good.

    GO CELTICS!

    • complexity

      I agree. Don't think they can control the videos that appear in that sidebar. I could be wrong.

    • J Atlas

      that video is too funny…fyi you can find it at redsarmy.com (yet another amazing celtics website for those who don't know)

  • lakershater13

    J.O. is out. This is why Bradley is dressing.

    Anyone extremely annoyed by the chase of 72 on espn.com? miami is 6-4. they are not winning 72 games. If anything put the celtics and lakers on that page. miami? really? NO. I dont think anyone this season will win 72 but once a team has 4 losses in the first 10 games you can take them out of the discussion.

    • Morpheus

      ESPN are lame,they ride the jockstraps or "superstars" that's their motto IYDK

      ESPN – We Ride The Jockstraps Of Stars

      I said this before,that 72-10 record will never be broken,topped.

    • CG12

      JO was replaced by West on the active roster.

  • Jay P

    Their part of the TrueHoop network CsFanInArkansas, which means their ESPN affiliated and have 0 control over what videos ESPN puts on there.

    Game related stuff:

    Super excited, one of my favorite pre Big-3 Celtics ever. He never looked right in any other colors but Green and White.

    Go Cs!

  • Morpheus

    Yeah for some reason Delonte just looks… right, in green doesn't he. He belongs here.

    Sidenote,can someone explain the reason for Baby's poor rebounding numbers this season. I mean 4.8 in 31 mins is pretty pathetic.

    • lakershater13

      Look at KG. He is rebounding like a man possessed. Baby is out there a lot with KG. I have been happy with baby so far this year. As long as he is scoring and taking charges im ok with those low rebounding numbers. His rebounding will likely remain the same or go down as soon as all of our centers are healthy.

    • TedL

      He doesn't box out well on D – at all, probably the weakest part of his game – and he isn't very tall. On offense, he usually sets high screens and hangs out 15 feet from the basket, which is a problem because he's not very mobile.

    • CG12

      Sure. He's a 6'7 1/2" PF/C with shortish arms and not much of a vertical leap.

  • Dan

    I'm more worried about Arenas than Kirk. He's the only one who stands a chance of making this game competitive unless the C's quit like last year.

  • I_Love_Green

    Oh boy KG and Shaq are getting me pumped tonight! They're dominating!!

    Delonte looks a little lost, which I anticipated, and you could tell Doc doesn't trust him completely yet, letting Nate run the point while out there with Delonte. Pierce is playing fantastic, and Rondo is just God.

    Only problems, not hustling for the rebounds (which wasn't as bad late in the 2nd half) and making dumb extra passes. A couple times Rondo had a lane to drive, but passed it out and turned it over.

  • TedL

    The first-team offense this year is much better than last year – and tonight just awesome. Just dismantling Washington. Granted the Wiz are not that good, but wow.

  • phreesh

    As the husband of a middle-aged women with shark-bite scars*, I take offense at your metaphor. Plus, I believe Rondo will actually treat a 90% Wall like an alien probing a hapless redneck.

    Judging by the volume of exclamation points, I am kinda excited by the prospect of a Wizards upset. The ! key on your keyboard would need some TLC after that.

    *This is probably not true.

    • jacksobd

      As the husband to an alien and a hapless redneck, I take offense to your metaphor. Oh, and watch our new show on TLC…

  • J Atlas

    delonte west just might have as great of a court vision as rondo…the assist to nate was sic

  • J Atlas

    this game is over and for the first time all season it's GINO TIME

  • Ryan DeGama

    Four minutes into the fourth and the Wiz haven't scored. Nice job by the bench.

  • zebulon

    What a fucking awesome game. I enjoyed everything about it except luke harangody.

  • I_Love_Green

    That was phenominal. Great great performance from the boys in green.

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