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Sorting Out The Phoenix Craziness


The dust has settled in the past 12+ hours in an extremely eventful Friday night contest against the floundering Phoenix Suns for your Boston Celtics. With a showdown with the Los Angeles Lakers looming a mere 24 hours from now, there’s plenty to talk about in the near future. Still, with so much happening last night in the Desert, it’s necessary to debrief and hear some reaction from the team’s putrid outing in the desert.

Doc’s Ejection:

It took place at the 4:33 mark of the second quarter when Steve Javie gave Doc Rivers the heave-ho after a little chit chat during a C’s timeout. Here’s how Rivers explains it going down (via The Boston Globe)

Celtics coach Doc Rivers had an early night as he was ejected for consecutive technical fouls by official Steve Javie, who had enough of Doc jawing about the officiating in the Celtics’ 88-71 loss to Phoenix. The Celtics were whistled for eight first-quarter fouls against the Phoenix big men, and the Celtics trailed 42-25 with 4:33 left in the half at the time of the ejection. It was one of the Celtics’ worst performances of the season.

“I’m not sure,” Rivers said when asked about the ejection. “I didn’t earn it. So I think you have to ask Mr. Javie. He actually came into our huddle. We were standing there and he came up to us. I’ll tell you exactly what was said. He said, ‘You guys are complaining way too much.’ And I said, ‘Then make the right calls.’ His answer back was ‘I’ll make a call for you.’ That’s how I got the tech. After I got the tech, I didn’t have any choice words for him. I didn’t say a word. You know what I said? ‘It’s about the game, it’s not about one individual.’ That’s what I said over and over again.”

Steve Bulpett added this from his Boston Herald notes:

Rivers paused twice to deliver additional invective, likely earning himself an additional fine from the league.

In truth, Rivers might actually want to thank Javie from having to sit ringside as the Celts suffered the TKO.

“Listen, it wasn’t about that why we lost the game,” the coach said. “We didn’t play well.”

A. Sherrod Blakely of CSNNE.com has well and has this reaction from Doc and Ray Allen involving the KG “low blow” and the ejection that followed:

If the league views Garnett’s contact as a punch thrown – which seems highly unlikely, based on the replay – they could potentially suspend him for Sunday’s highly anticipated matchup with the Los Angeles Lakers.

Rivers watched the play inside the locker room, and said he was surprised by the officials call.

“I thought Channing Frye was the instigator,” Rivers said. “Kevin didn’t jump in Channing’s face. I thought Channing Frye jumped in Kevin’s face. I don’t know how we get a throw-out on that.”

Rivers was reminded of the blow near Frye’s waist that was delivered by Garnett.

“If that did happen, it would only be like the 20th time it probably happened in the game,” Rivers said. “You see it all the time; guys poke at your stomach. Come on. If that’s what gets a guy upset, then they’re a really tough guy.”

Celtics guard Ray Allen has taken his share of hits above, around and below the waist.

As an NBA shooter, Allen believes it just comes with the territory.

“I’ve trained where people hit me on the waist; people put me in situations where they’re tugging me. I just follow through on my shot like I normally would,” Allen said. “Guys try to sell it with the referees. Guys fall down and act like they’re dead.”

I’m not going to defend the KG play, however I would be shocked if he earns a suspension because of it. Definitely a fine, but not a game penalty. And definitely not before tomorrow afternoon’s premier showdown.

Say all you want about the drama surrounding this game, but the fact of the matter is the Celtics shot 34.1 percent last night. It’s easy to see why Doc wanted to have this road trip changed, the absurd travel times and turnaround made last night’s contest brutal to say the least. Nonetheless the lack of road scoring has become a problem. Take a look at the C’s offensive point totals from the past four road games.

@ Phoenix 71
@ Portland 88
@ Washington 83
@ Chicago 79

Unsurprisingly, the C’s have lost three of those four games. And given the fact Glen Davis could be on the shelve for awhile with a strained hamstring, the road will not get easier entering LA tomorrow afternoon. Paul Pierce is beat up, KG has been up and down, Ray Allen has cooled off and Rajon Rondo has had more turnovers that made field goals in all of those four games.

I’ll look at this a bit more in-depthly after tomorrow’s contest, but for now, Doc Rivers needs to take a look to see how to get this squad back posting points on the road to give itself a reasonable chance to win games.

Brendan comes back at you later tonight with plenty more to get ready for the NBA Finals rematch tomorrow afternoon.

  • someguyinsac

    Doubt the League suspends KG for the Laker game too, it'd be like punching themselves in the groin.

  • celticfan

    this road trip was crazy. what other team has this kind of travel .go from boston, to Oregon then to Phoenix then go to lakers. the fakers have played more games then any team at home.S tern needs to call Javie out on why he was over at the Celtics huddle. he had his nose stuck where it didn't belong. hey stern how about fining Javie the was no need for all those calls. what an ass hole for the word go.Javie has had it out for the Celtics and last night showed it. Javie needs to be put out for a while so he can learn how to ref a game the right way and made calls on both sides not just one team you asshole

  • Batman

    and Rajon Rondo has had more turnovers that made field goals in all of those four games.


  • I_Love_Green

    I'm officially nervous for the game tomorrow. No Baby, Rondo playing like crap, and Ray isn't shooting well. We're gonna need a big game from Paul if we wanna score over 70 points.

  • ElRoz

    If one looks how Boston scored and shot the last 4 games – Washington, Cleveland, Portland, and Phoenix…one could see that their offense is in deep sh**t, except in the Cleveand game (wow).
    They had serious problems scoring agaisnt the likes of Washington and Phoenix over the last 4 games…this is a trend and I would be pleasantly shocked if they score over 85 points against the better defense of the Lakers….we might witness a 65-70 point performance on Sunday….at least it should quiet down the whole "Rondo is in the top 5 point gaurds" crap we hear all the time. He is top 10 for sure….but top 5 is too crowded.
    So it is clear – C's defense is very very good…..and their offense right now might not be good enough to wn a championship…they'll hold you down to 80-90 points, but you'll hold them down to even less.
    If Phoenix and Washington could do it – who can't?

  • Chris

    I really feel like something's up with Rondo, wondering how much his various foot / ankle / calf / hamstring issues continue to affect him…he's not been nearly as aggressive this year getting into the paint, especially getting into the paint looking to score. His low FT% for the year might be dissuading him a bit, but I wonder if it's something else. On fastbreaks he's not creating passing lanes with his speed as much as he used to…in some 3-on-3 situations he'll actually pull up trying to find trailers instead of using his speed to turn it into a 3-on-2.

    Also, he's developed some lazy passing habits which have been killing the Celtics lately…his lobs over the defense when someone is fronting the post is an important pass in his arsenal, but he needs to be more selective about it / not attempt to make it when he's 5+ feet from the 3-point line, etc. Teams are also starting to read this pass and other players are coming off their man to deflect / intercept the attempts.

    Rondo makes some passes which for most players would NOT be worth it since they don't gain a large enough edge for the player receiving the ball but are a high degree of difficulty pass. For Rondo these passes are generally OK because he's *so* skilled at them, but only if he's really focusing and locked into the movement of players. If he's playing at half-speed these sorts of passes turn into turnovers far too often.

    I love me some Rondo, but I've been frustrated watching him over the past few weeks and the past few games in particular…he's just not exhibiting the same aggressiveness / focused play that I've come to expect from him.

  • Jason

    @Celticfan – I couldn't have agreed any more.
    Yeah, I mean, who the f___ calls technicals by approaching a team during a timeout? I remember watching it and seeing it not even be back from the commercial break and the announcer was telling us "well Doc Rivers is ejected" and I was like, what the h___ for?! It was the biggest rigged bs I've ever seen in my life… Oh wait – I mean, second most rigged bs ever (1st was the Finals last year vs. the Fakeshow feat. the Rapist and the Pawnshop (Artest)

    I'm looking forward to our "wheelchair boys" to kick some Laker @$s tomorrow…
    ps – @I_Love_Green – no need to be nervous- the Lakers SUCK vs. teams over .500… they just lost at home to SACTOWN loll …

  • dtla la

    Agreed that Rondo doesn't look healthy.

    He looks slow and tentative.

  • Jamie

    Didn't they saw on tv last night something like 20% of all technicals given out this year were rescinded by the league upon review?

    And Javie has been a clown ever since he got intot he league. His rookie year as a ref he threw out the Bullets mascot during a game. Crazy.

  • Morpheus

    Rondo isn't a problem anymore, he might be tomorrow against the Lakers, i just don't see it happening. And Ray hasn't been playing like crap other than last nights game, but who wasn't outside of KG.

  • moxie

    It didn't even look like KG was going for the waist or anything. He was just putting his arm out on defense, and it just so happened that that's where it hit. He didn't swing his arm, and there was no follow-through.

    That game was just ridiculous.

  • someguyinsac

    I'd be happy if someone would whisper in Nate's ear, (again), that he doesn't need to hoist silly shots up when there's ample time on the clock to setup a play.

  • john schaffer

    come back delonte so nate can sit on the bench ,,play wafer instead of nate anybody but nate he wil dribble down hes only celtic player down with 20 seconds on shot clock he hoist a 3 shot up and of course misses

  • ck3

    a bit more in depthly?

  • ElRoz

    So who's the back-up PF now? No Baby and no JO….can they use Erden as PF for limited minutes in addition to Harangody? Let's say about 16 minutes total out of two of them…with KG at 32 min a game.

    Or just squeeze some PF minutes out of Erden and Perk – not against Lamar Odom or anything, but on other games against somebody slower.

    Is it too much to ask for Nate, Marquis, and Shaq to just be a positive factor tomorrow, or must one expect a let down once again?

  • Stephen

    Don't expect Stern to question Javie about anything. Stern hates the C's and instructs the refs to mess with them. If the C's get a fair officiating crew for the Laker game it's a bonus. Just don't count on it !!!

    • Mike

      The way things have been as far as officiating goes for the Celtics I'm just expecting to see either bill kennedy, salvatore or crawford as one of the refs for the game…

      • CG12

        It will be Kennedy, I bet.


    Here's a lil something for you guys. Can't wait for the game……. you guys are gonna get spanked.

  • DRJ1

    "Paul Pierce is beat up, KG has been up and down" — Not understanding these 2 statements. PP has been getting fouled (but not called) often lately, but I haven't seen or heard anything about actual injury. And KG has been nothing but uniformly solid since day 1. So what's up with this?

    • B Robb

      I'll try to clarify more for you DRJ. Pierce had left both the Cleveland and Portland games early with injuries. Minor injuries at that it appears, but stuff like that (sprained ankle, bruised thigh) can start to add up. I wasn't referring to fouls there, but definitely agree with your assessment of him not getting foul calls lately either. KG, I should have been more clear, I feel like his production (understandably) has been up and down since returning from his calf injury. The shooting numbers have been there, but no double-digit rebounding games since he's been back. He hasn't been bad by any means, just coming back to earth from the monster first half he was having, which is to be expected.

  • celticfan

    i Agree stephen,stern is an asshole and he is going to make sure the celtics get messed with today. he has already stated he wants the fakers and heat in the final 2 teams. so you know he is going to do everything in his power to mess with us.they fined KG well what about frye stern needs to look at the video on cnne.com KG did not get in his face he got into KG face first. and what about the other players from the suns who were involved in it. why weren't they fined and givien a T. this goes to show that the NBA does not like the Celtics and if they can get our big players out of the game they will. you watch today how many calls the Celtics will get called against. them.and how many free throws the fakers will get. look at our refs. we got crawford which C's fans know he doesn't like us.

  • Stephen

    @celticfan —- Plus it's a known fact that Stern is a personal friend of Phil Jackson. You talk about a conflict of interest. It should be a league rule that the commissioner cannot be a friend with any of the coaches or owners for that matter. Stern isn't the slightest bit interested in having the 2 best teams in the finals. He's interested in television ratings. Period. To him that means his 2 primadonna golden boys, Kobe vs. Lebron. You think the officiating is bad now, just wait until the C's start to move deep in to the playoffs!!!

  • Alex

    This game was horrible to watch on tv. The whole game came off like a work and ESPN has the worst announcing crew ever. Jeff Van Gundy should be shot. All he does is trash talk the league and lower the quality of the league every time he opens his mouth. Who want's to watch a broadcast where the commentator critisizes the league? That's a great way to bring in fans. ESPN is trash.

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