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Game 2/66: Celtics (0-1) @ Heat (1-0) Open Thread

 

Boston at Miami
8:00 P.M. ET
AmericanAirlines Arena
TNT

Offensive Efficiency:
Boston: 104.0 points/100 possessions
Miami: 108.3 points/100 possessions

Defensive Efficiency (2010-11):
Boston: 97.8 points allowed/100 possessions
Miami: 106.9 points allowed/100 possessions

Key Injuries: Paul Pierce (heel) is out. Sasha Pavlovic will start.

Probable Miami Starters: Almario Vernard Chalmers (PG), Dwyane Wade (SG), LeBron Raymone James (SF), Christopher Wesson Bosh (PF), Joel Anthony (C)

View From The Opposing Bench: Heat Index

Boston returns to the Triple-A for the first time since Miami took the Eastern Conference Semis and celebrated like it was V-J Day. They’ll run without Paul Pierce, who’s still out with a bruised heel. Mickael Pietrus won’t be available for about 10 days, although his knee apparently feels “good.” So the SFs are down to Marquis Daniels and Sasha Pavlovic, and Doc has never wavered in his desire to keep Marquis playing with the bench.

That means Sasha Pavlovic will be guarding the best player in the world tonight. More good news after the jump!

***

MARIO CHALMERS POPPING HIS PEACOAT

Tonight we’ll get our first look at the new Heat intro video, which director Gil Green says will have a “music video vibe.” Sounds very tasteful and not stupid at all. Not that surprising, considering that Green also directed this cartoonishly over-the-top chunk of Youtube gold that functioned as last year’s intro. Hope you like NBA players wearing four layers and slowly raising their heads!

***

PREGAME ANALYSIS

Not getting the vibe that people are very excited about this game. What should be a major grudge match for the Celtics is starting to feel like a throwaway loss, especially after what the Heat did to the defending champion Mavericks in the season opener. When you find yourself hoping that maybe Pavlovic heard LeBron James sleep-talk the secret to defending him while napping on the 2007 Cavaliers team bus, it’s time to reevaluate.

Sasha will try this tonight.

Paul Pierce, unfortunately, may not even be the biggest thing the Celtics are missing today.

I wrote a lot last season about the value of a defensive big man for stopping the Heat, because so much of their game is focused on attacking the rim. With a tandem of Shaq and Jermaine or Perkins and Shaq or whoever, the Celtics had a stopper under the basket at all times during the regular season last year, forcing LeBron and Wade to settle for jumpers that are much less efficient for them. That’s why having Tyson Chandler was so essential for the Mavs in the Finals, and why they ate it on Sunday without him.

Now, though, they have less than 20 minutes of Jermaine O’Neal and whatever they can get out of Chris Wilcox, who is not very tall and didn’t really show much in the opener outside of his ability to pass to the wrong team. KG is always good for some help defense, but that leaves Horrible Boshes open for those jumpers he likes.

Without a strong defensive center playing more than half the game, the Celtics will have a rough time against the Heat all year. I wouldn’t be mad if Doc put some of his third-string bigs in tonight, just to see if a big body works. Maybe the Heat will be the first team to get Stiemsrollered.

Still plenty of reason to watch tonight, though. It’ll be very interesting to see if Rajon Rondo continues his MVP play, or if Brandon Bass continues to impress. As always, there are rookies to look out for and veterans to check in on. No matter what happens, we’re still finding out about this Celtics team. And if they win tonight…well, that would just be the greatest thing.

***

PREDICTION

Miami 104, Celtics 96

  • http://twitter.com/only1bfears @only1bfears

    i really hope we can get a win. the heat destroyed the mavs but i think if pav can keep lebron in check we have a shot.

    • LStrike

      "if pav can keep lebron in check"

  • CG12

    This one does look pretty predictable. Rondo torches the entire Heat team (although everyone seems to like Heat rookie PG Norris Cole and awful lot). Lebron dismantles Pavlovic. Ray makes DWade work, but he gets his anyway. Bass does Bass things, banging the boards, making hustle plays, and hitting open jumpers at a very un-Baby-like clip. JO looks somewhat effective early on, but then vanishes for virtually all of the rest of the game, leaving the distressingly clueless-looking Chris Wilcox to play "center" for distressingly long stretches of time. Avery will play some nasty D and brutally clank a couple of Js.

    I'd be delighted to see a Stiemsma cameo. Delighted. I also hope that Pavlovic Dog will get chained to the bench in the early going and Quisy will get some extended run. He is so much better than Sasha, it is ridiculous. But he can't shoot 3s, which is the only reason I can ever see Pavlovic playing over him.

    • Jman

      Doesn't matter my friend…Refs are going to call this one tonight…LEbron and Wade are always allowed to run to the hoop with calls going their way constantly just look at the FT number they get…So with a defensive team oriented Boston, it'll be hard to capture the win…
      Let's hope Doc keeps Avery out of the game…

      • skeeds

        Dude, do you really think it's the refs that are going to determine the game? Yes. LBJ and Wade, get their calls, as stars tend to do. But really, these are 2 almost certainly top 50 all time players. They get a huge amount of FTs, because most of the time no one can stop them without fouling. It's as simple as that.

        • Jman

          No not really…If you watch them going into the lane, the calls go their way consistently..So I have to disagree. As an ex collegiate player, anytime someone goes into the lane, 99% of the time theres a foul. It's up to the ref to decide the call. And since those two are top players like the mello/Sasha foul the other night, they're going to get the call…

  • david

    Really hope Doc keeps KG's minutes in check tonight, not matter what happens. He looked gassed the last game.

  • Batman

    I'm scared, hold me

  • ElRoz

    Nice picture of Sasha grabbing LeBron!

    I say Doc should keep the minutes of KG, Allen, and Rondo down tonight: 30 for KG, 33-34 for Ray, 35 for Rondo – no more than that…that';s the max…they got to play tomorrow.

    Doc should use his bench more – Dooling, Wilcox, and Stiemsma MUST get minutes….for all the talk about saving the starters, Doc looks like he is reverting back to using them more than needed in non-playoff games.

  • BIG DADDY1978

    Danny Crawford need his but kicked

  • BIG DADDY1978

    he always get the Celtics Big games

  • I_Love_Green

    I think this one could get ugly, and fast.

  • -JP

    I am going to be optomistic for the hell of it, Rondo could torch this team, like he did to the knicks. The Heat seem to bring out the best in the Celtics (or at least LeBron does). Not having Pierce is so big, his value is HUGE to this team. We are basically starting a 5th string SF against LeBron (PP, Jeff Green, Daniels, Pietrus being the first 4).

  • Mark

    This game won't go well.

  • red

    Celtics win JJ plays scores 10 ,grabs 7 boards and 1 block, Bradley score 10 gets 2 steals

    • I_Love_Green

      What are you on man

    • HondoHoudini

      More like 10 steals and 2 points.

  • http://twitter.com/only1bfears @only1bfears

    game time. lets go Celtics!

  • Batman

    Dooling Can really stroke it

  • IBleedGreen

    Can someone tell me what is Avery Bradley doing out there? He looks lost.

  • I_Love_Green

    Went better than expected however it felt like we had 12 fouls and they had like 1.

  • I_Love_Green

    Oh my they are good.

  • Ryan

    So…… Very…….. Fast

  • guest

    Can we find the guy from the 70s triple overtime game that punched the ref? The refs tonight need a good punch in the face, they aren’t the only ones to blame though.

  • steveb

    Have to stop the turnovers. As far as the refs go…it’s not so much the calls the Heat get but the lack of any calls against them. Quis and Ray were each fouled more than once in the lane and no calls. Speed kills though and they are fast. Hope they revert to their old ways soon.

  • Batman

    Damn SuperRondo is balling
    Too bad he the heat are destroying us

  • Chris from Danvers

    Chris Paul who? I'll take the new, improved Rondo any day. Hope it stays.

  • Chris from Danvers

    In terms of refs, teams that take ball to the hole get the calls. How many mid range jumpers Green going to take? Got to get it to the hole.

  • sightline75

    Why did we give MarShon Brooks away? Why?……….. JaJaun is not getting any minutes, Bradley is still projected to be another year away from being a reasonable NBA player(who cant score). Look to the future DA, stop drafting guys that are "like" other player you like.
    The Heat are good at building pressure, they force teams into turnovers and bad shots. I watched some of last years playoff games again and the Celtics tanked, poor shot selection and bad decission cost them that series. They cannot play at Miami's pace.

  • Batman

    We are forcing Marquis to do way too much
    We REALLY need Pierce back

  • Chris from Danvers

    Amen to that.

  • diehardceltic

    anyone with a site i can watch the game?

  • Chris from Danvers

    Anyone know why Dick Bavetta is still allowed to officiate???

  • Batman

    Regardless if we win or lose this team shows how much heart it had and that it can keep up with any team

  • Chris from Danvers

    Agreed….very impressive the way they stuck with this….have some grit, too. Could have easily given up.

  • IBleedGreen

    Can we have Norris Cole instead of Avery Bradley?

  • Batman

    Ok I’m not one to rip the refs but that’s 3 BULLSHIT calls even te announcers are ripping
    Wtf is this shit

  • red

    Sasha puts up his usual dismal performance how does he keep a job

  • ElRoz

    Rondo really blew up towards the end…shades of the guy they kept on the bench during key stretches in 2008 playoffs…

    JO gave them nothing…KG more than that…but his offense and rebounding are going down FAST…I mean FAST.

    0-3 start is just around the corner folks…0-3.

  • red

    We need a big who can play more than 17 minutes JO is not cutting it being able to only give limited minutes either JJ develops or we trade for someone who can play 30 min a game

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