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Final Grades: C’s 86, Cavs 83

 

* Apologies for the tardiness on the grades this morning. Our recap grade generator (which creates the cool graphics you see below) conveniently did not function and mistakenly erased the full commentary I had typed up and completed a couple hours ago, which gave me a oh-no-so gentle reminder to always back up your work. In any case, here’s round two of my thinking….. have at them:

Boston Celtics 86 Final

Recap | Box Score

83 Cleveland Cavaliers
Paul Pierce, SF 35 MIN | 4-11 FG | 2-2 FT | 2 REB | 6 AST | 12 PTS | -11Some big shots late by the captain but he still appears to be in a bit of a slump overall. Six assists are nice, but just two rebounds on the defensive end isn’t going to cut it, not when the Cavs are getting 11 offensive boards without their top rebounder. Pierce needs to help more down low and take care of the ball better.
Brandon Bass, PF 35 MIN | 6-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 12 PTS | +1Well he shook off the rust quickly. Can’t ask for much else after missing the past couple weeks. Now he just needs to remain consistent, like he did in the first few weeks of the year if this team wants to go anywhere. His addition to the starting lineup could be a regular thing if he keeps this up.
Kevin Garnett, PF 33 MIN | 5-11 FG | 8-8 FT | 8 REB | 1 AST | 18 PTS | -3Actions speak louder than words. After leading a team meeting last week, KG backed it up on the floor, playing great on both ends, including in crunch-time when he did not shy away from the moment and instead grabbed a crucial offensive rebound off his own miss during a mismatch against Kyrie Irving. Execution down the stretch is something this team hasn’t accomplished much of all year, so it’s nice to see it back in action
Ray Allen, SG 35 MIN | 8-13 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 2 AST | 22 PTS | +8Typical Ray, not much to say here other than how he appears to be breaking out of his February shooting swoon. Some nights, when the offense is struggling, I wonder whether it makes sense to get Ray 20-25 shoots like his Seattle days to see what would happen. Can’t be much worse than this offense is usually right?
Rajon Rondo, PG 32 MIN | 0-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 11 AST | 0 PTS | +7A tough night shooting, but I’m more concerned about the turnovers and the unforced ones at that. Boston was cruising with a double-digit lead in the first half before Rondo got foolish with a few bulletpoint passes that served no real purpose. He needs to get better in this department as the margin of error is gone.
Keyon Dooling, PG 11 MIN | 0-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 0 PTS | -1He’s hurt still (hip) and he’s playing like it. Another guard could be of use if this team decides to keep this squad together at the deadline.
Chris Wilcox, PF 23 MIN | 2-4 FG | 1-2 FT | 11 REB | 1 AST | 5 PTS | +8A banner night on the glass for the big man, doing exactly what they brought him in here for. Now if he can keep the injury bug away for a few weeks, I’ll be happy.
Mickael Pietrus, SF 17 MIN | 4-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 9 PTS | +14What’s not to like? Efficient and perhaps even more impressive than six of his eight shots were not from downtown. Talk about an upset! After a tough shooting month, nice to see Mickael starting the second half off right.
Greg Stiemsma, C 4 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -2Not much to evaluate here, besides a strong move to the hoop off a Rondo dish in the second quarter. He could become relevant again here if JO is out awhile…..which means it probably will happen.
Avery Bradley, SG 16 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 6 PTS | -6Gaining Doc’s trust more and more by the day here. Hitting a couple jumpers helps, as well as him gaining some sense of confidence within the offense, especially while penetrating (3 assists were nice). Indicative of a strong game overall from the bench.

 

  • janos

    Hi Bryan, is Janos
    I think is to many grade A level for win small point over bad team
    when is next game on who, play?

  • skeeds

    Janos, as usual, speaks the truth. Too close a win for grades that good…

    Thanks for making a remark about Pierce's rebounding. For every player, there is one stat, sometimes arbitrary, that is highly revealing for his playing level. For Pierce, it's definitely defensive rebounds.
    When Pierce rebounds well, it's usually a good game. Same goes for shot attempts by Ray. Being a cautious shooter, If he gets many, it's cause he's open a lot, which means the offense is running smoothly. Rondo's key stat is obvious, free throw attempts.
    My favorite is KG's assists. When KG has more than 5 assists it's one of those games that I decide he's the most awesomest player ever in the histrory of the world. (which he kind of is anyway)

    • I_Love_Green

      Weird this is, Pierce used to be such a good rebounder, and probably still is. He just doesn't go down in the paint enough to help out.

      • skeeds

        That's exactly why this stat is so telling of him. In that stretch of marvelous basketball he played earlier this season, he averaged 8 rebounds. Right now he's averaging 2.
        We were arguing when Rondo came back, that Pierce underperformed because he's incompatible with Rondo. Well, unfortunately for PP, while a drop in assists and field goal attempts could be Rondo's fault, rebound has little to do with anything else but effort…

  • IBleedGreen

    C- for Rondo is too generous. I seriously think the Celtics would be better without him last night.

    • sonofauerbach

      rondo sucks bro…he doesnt have the guts to be a proffesional he's a diva, he's tanking so he gets traded. do it!

  • CG12

    Avery needs more minutes. He should get all of Dooling's minutes at the 1, and they can play Pavlovic or Quisy at the 2 (or Pietrus). Dooling is working hard, but just isn't effective. Avery is showing a lot more confidence with his dribble penetration, which I love to see. I don't even know what to say about Rondo anymore. He's either sulking or his confidence is shaky, and I doubt that it is the latter, as he has a titanic ego. Interesting plot line for the rest of the season.

    PP has no legs. He can't go over guys and has been consistently forcing it into the paint and at the rim, and is having a hard time finishing and isn't getting a lot of whistles. He has no lift on his J. I don't know if he is injured, in bad shape, or just old.

    KG is just beasting it right now. He is aging and dinged up, but getting it done on brains, heart, and balls. So awesome.

    The sloppy ball handling is driving me nuts. Sooo many dumb turnovers. They continue to throw lazy passes all the way across the court in the half-court offense, leading to breaks the other way. And the "outlet" passes last night were awful. Basic basketball, guys, throw the pass to the sidelines, not the middle of the floor. That way if something goes wrong, maybe it just goes out of bounds and doesn't lead to easy points. Ray and PP have been especially bad in this regard – I have no idea why. I'm all for pushing the pace, but that doesn't mean slinging it all over the place.

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