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Krstic High Scorer, Loses Game: Clips 108, C’s 103

 

ESPN Box ScoreClipperblogClips Nation

One thing we like to say when the Celtics lose is that they were just unlucky, and there’s not a lot you can take home from the game. “Fluke,” in other words. And it’s easy to say that tonight.

  • KG had a pretty grotesque outing from the floor (5-19).
  • Ray, Paul, and Rondo all shot under 50 percent against a terrible defensive team.
  • Four important players were out injured.
  • The team has five new players (they were all on the court at once tonight, for some reason), and they haven’t learned the system yet.
  • Troy Murphy still didn’t make a shot, but he probably will at some point.
  • A bunch of wild Mo Williams threes were more than the difference in the game.

And even with all that, it was kind of close at the end.

But there were a few nasty warning signs in this one, too. For example, Nenad Krstic gave up DeAndre Jordan’s season-high in scoring, almost exclusively on open dunks. And the offense appears distinctly less passing-oriented, which might be the result of Krstic hanging out on the elbow instead of underneath, where he’d give the shooters some space. And pretty much every Celtic had a tough time around the rim tonight, because there wasn’t anyone there to clear Jordan out (Krstic again).

There’s ammunition for Ainge-deniers to be found in tonight’s game, even though Krstic led the team with 20 points. Because if you score 103 points on the Clippers and they don’t have Eric Gordon and you’re a top-three defensive team, you should win. More in a little while.

  • http://lovemyceltics.blogspot.com mycelts

    CLIPPED

    A man named Jordan lit up Q one, 
    DeAndre for the Clippers, he's no fun.
    Clippers shot 68%, led by thirteen, 
    At the end of Q one, where's our Cs machine?

    No offense for the Cs, not much defense, too true, 
    Doc will have to figure out what to do.
    Q2 starts with all guys we don't know, 
    Because none of them were Celtics two weeks ago.

    Pavlovic two quick steals, that's a good start
    Sweet to watch these new guys playing with heart.
    In comes Pierce to get the offense going,
    But the  inexperience of the new guys is really showing.

    Somehow he got loose–Williams, that's Mo,
    Every shot of his seemed guaranteed to go.
    The half ends–thankfully for the Cs tonight 
    As their offense is bad, their defense a fright.

    Q3 Cs climb back, but we're not there yet,
    Since Q1 only two assists did Rondo get.
    Twenty-eight minutes passed before assist three
    Clippers' lead down to 10 led by Captain P.

    RAY ALLEN FOR THREE early, two more in Q4
    Since early Q1 the Cs' closest score.
    Great hustle for Krstic and he's having a blast
    He is finding a home on this team real fast.

    Cs couldn't get stops, Clippers couldn't miss,
    Best to just forget a game like this.
    Away from this game one thing we can take, 
    At least it wasn't a  highlight reel for their guy Blake.

    Can't help myself, it must be said, 
    Of Reggie Ray is now 28 ahead.

    lovemyceltics.blogspot.com

  • I_Love_Green

    Well that was just a piss poor effort by the girls in green. Got bullied on the boards all night long, and the Clippers got whatever they wanted in the paint. The perimeter defense was even worse, they acted like leaving them open was a good idea. We've been playing really bad basketball recently, but our opponents have been bad and have played worse. Tonight it caught up to us. I seriously would not be surprised if Chicago caught up to us with the way we've been playing recently.

    And Rajon Rondo has been sooo bad lately. His defense is good for about 4 posessions a game, and is bad the rest of the game.

    • MikeD

      I disagree that it was a poor effort. They didn't execute well, none of the calls or bounces went their way, and they had a tough time shooting the ball. The only thing they did well was fight. Do you know how many teams in the league would have completely given up down 18 in the fourth quarter? Somewhere near 29. Yeah they didn't look good at all, but every team lays a dud every now and then. But i was proud of their effort, this team never quits.

      • Ryan DeGama

        Did you see Rondo tonight? Half asleep on defense. Very poor effort.

        • Chris O

          Yes I was at the game. I can tell you Rondo's defense or lack there of lost the game.

  • kricky

    Starters are playing way to many minutes and it has caught up with them in terms of lackadaisical efforts through stretches of the game. I think this is especially true for RR. These injuries to the 2nd unit are just killing us.

  • ElRoz

    Druing the 2008-2010 playoffs – 3 playoff – Boston is 1-9 when needing to get win #4 on the road…including 0-4 last year/2010…including games 6 and 7 at LA…..let's just say that this is tough and thsi "big three" + Doc is not able to do it 90% of the time.

    This is why they need to get the #1 seed in the East and also get a better record than LA. Achieving this will be VERY difficult when Boaton loses to the Clippers at home…and still has to play on the road in: Phily, Houston, SA, NY, Chicago, Miami, New Orleans…all raods games agaisnt tough or at least better than average teams.

    As it looks right now, it would be a little upste if Boston holds on to #1 in the East, sicne Chicago is more focused, more motivated, and has an easier schedule.
    The Lakers, even though they have 2-5 rings, appear to be more motivated right now than Boaton with one ring. That's is a problem.

    • Batman

      What is Rojan Rando doing commenting on CelticsHub?

    • MP!

      Go back to lakers nation, please.

  • GeOgre

    I was trying to focus in Krstic's defense….where was it? There was just one play where Kaman backed him down in the post at will and threw in a hook… I was pretty disgusted.
    I still like Krstic's game though… He and KG will have to work on their communication.

  • skeeds

    and that, my friends, is how you beat the new Celtics. Fast shooters, and big post players. The Clippers did tonight what Orlando usually does to everyone but the Celtics. Give the ball to the big guy, force help, shoot from outside. The Clips didn't take half a bad shot in the game. They were left wide open because down low we had to double. (blasphemy!!!) and that's not something we're particularly good at. It took them about 1 second to find the open man, and 3 seconds for the defence to recover.
    Damn… and it's just the Clippers. I wonder what happens when we play an actual front-heavy team…

    • DRJ1

      You forgot ridiculous, unconscious shooting from the 3, by both Williams and Gomes. Some games can't be won.

    • kricky

      You have a point. And those 3s they took werefor the most part good shots.

      But remember, our front line is still out with injuries with Shaq and JO out. Also no Baby tonight. We should be able to shore up the D with those pieces back in action.

      Right now it feels like they'll never be back. But they will.

  • Dan

    The Celtics came out wiht absoletly no energy in the game. The Celtics were dominated in the first half by Mo Williams and De Andre Jordan. The lack of bigs definetly hurt them in this game, but their perimeter defense was even worse. Rondo got beat of the dribble time after time and Mo Williams either hit a three or drove or lobbed to De Andre Jordan. When you give a team confidence early they think they can make any basket and thats what happened most of the game. Timely threes by, Gomes, Moon, Bledsoe and Williams. I like the play of arroyo I thought he should have been given more minutes to play with the starters down the road. I was actually surprised by his defensive effort. Bottom line if the Celtics started the game with the intensity showed in portions of the third and forth quarter they win the game.

  • dave

    The regular 82 game season is nothing like the post season where you have to beat the same opponent 4 times in two weeks to advance.

    The "C's" are something like 29th in the league in rebounding. I can't imagine how Danny thought that a scoring forward was a bigger need than a rebounding center.

  • Ryan DeGama

    Rondo's D was half-ass in the most charitable of assessments. He gave up on play after play.

    • Tom W

      Is it possible he's got an injury he's not telling us about, or something?

      • CG12

        Possible, but his bad D doesn't tell us anything about that. Rondo has been playing selectively bad D for years. He flat-out refuses to simply focus on staying in front of his man.

        • Chris O

          I have been thinking he's been injured for a while now, NO ONE believes me but he is not 100%/moving right

  • Paul

    Difficult loss tonight but it happens to everyone…remember the lakers were done a couple weeks ago after losing to the Cavs…Celtics will be fine best to just move on to the next one…
    Go C's!!

  • Dan

    First of all the " Cs" were 29th in the league in rebounding last year. The lack of rebounding right is a concern but I 'm sure Danny didn't trade Perkins envisioning that Krstic would be the starting center. Danny obviously feels confident that Shaq and Jermaine will return and help. Requarding the trade Krstic has be very good on the offensive and he is a solid offensive rebounder. Green has shown glimpes the Golden State game and should really help them on the offensive end of the floor. Its take time adjusting from starting to the bench. The celtics have twenty more games a fourth of there season to get healthy and create chemistry.

  • Scott

    Ray was high with 23, and shot better than 50%

    I am worried about this teams defense a little bit. I know that the players are new, and that is what is keeping me somewhat confident in this team down the stretch. but what is in the back of my mind is what if we dont get the oneals back healthy, and will BBD really help this team and their defensive schemes when he gets back? I dunno.. The offense looks great, but we just cant really stop anyone when we need it. is that due to all the new guys, plus injuries? Of the original 15 guys we had @ training camp, only 10 are still on the roster, and four of them are injured… i hope its just who we have now, and the fact that they are NEW.

    Go C's

  • Paul

    It's definitely gonna take some time to integrate the new guys on defense…and I agree that Shaq will be back to help and hopefully Jermaine too. With more time together, the C's should be peaking at just the right time heading into the playoffs…

  • http://twitter.com/M_DeVelaine @M_DeVelaine

    Perfect storm for the Clippers. Shaq was fond of saying early in the season that the C's beat themselves and no team had actually beat them. I'm sure he stopped that long ago, but this game… I come away from this game having learned 2 things.

    1. This game was a blowout last year. Down by 18-20 at the half? Stayed that way. No will to win. This year? Different story. The second half alone tells me all I need to know. Now if they can just solve the back-to-back games issue, they'll be fine.

    2. The Clippers as currently constructed can actually make some serious noise in the Western Conference. Imagine where they'd be if they were together for an entire season with the crew they sent out tonight. They're a better team than most of us give them credit for (and understandably so, seeing as they've been the bottom of the league for years), and well… I think they've earned a bit more after tonight.

  • BBynum

    I think it boils down to (a) tough matchup at the Center position, (b) some luck on the part of the Clippers (Mo Williams' shooting in particular), and (c) some poor offensive execution.

    With respect to (a): DeAndre Jordan is a fairly unique combination of size and athleticism. While Shaq and Baby probably would have had better luck boxing out and rebounding, this type of matchup will prove difficult for the C's when they run into D Howard and Bynum if they meet in the playoffs. Otherwise, we're fine at the center position. But if we concede that these centers will get theirs it becomes all the more important to prevent guys like Mo Williams from getting theirs.

    As far as (C), this has me a liitle concerned. In the 4th quarter it looked to me like the starters were gassed. Paul and Ray were not moving without the ball with their normal zeal, either because they were tired as it looked to me or because their was confusion in their set. Rondo dribbling the hell out of the ball at the top of the key without moving to improve angles was also annoying.

  • BBynum

    Part of me says that Shaq's presence helps both of these potential ailments. For one thing, I have more confidence that Shaq is running the appropriate play than I do in Krstic because of the recency of the trade. Also, I think one understated benefit of Shaq when he is in is the opportunity for the other starters to rest while on offense. Typically when plays are called for Shaq he converts relatively quickly or passes out to a relatively stationary spot-up shooter if a defender collapses. But these plays do not require the constant-motion offense that we saw half-heartedly executed in the 4th quarter of this game. So the trade should help reduce the starters' minutes, but Shaq's return is still important from a rest perspective for Paul and Ray in particular in my opinion.

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