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Game 47/66: Celtics (25-21) @ Sixers (26-21) Open Thread

 

Boston @ Philadelphia
Wells Fargo Center
8:00 PM
CSNNE/ESPN

Offensive Efficiency
Boston: 
98.2 points/100 possessions (25th)
Philadelphia: 
102.3 points/100 possessions (10th)

Defensive Efficiency
Boston: 
96.7 points allowed/100 possessions (3rd)
Philadelphia:
94.5 points allowed/100 possessions (1st)

Probable Philadelphia starters: Jrue Holiday (PG), Evan Turner (SG), Andre Iguodala (SF), Elton Brand (PF), Spencer Hawes (C)

View from opposing bench: Philadunkia

Thumbnail: Calling all optimists!  We have a game for you!

A few short days ago, I wrote a quick little post about a three game span that could have meant a lot in terms of how the season would play out for the C’s.  It seemed really foolish at the time, after all the Celtics had just suffered two embarrassing losses to very beatable teams, but I felt they had a real chance to make up ground on the Sixers before their March 23rd meeting.   All the C’s had to do was win their next two and hope the Sixers lost a game, and they would be playing for first place by the end of the week.

So here we are.  March 23rd.  The Celtics swoop into Philadelphia riding the momentum of two quality wins and the Sixers lost a tight one against New York.  If the C’s can make it three in a row, they will be in sole possession of first place.  It’s such a weird feeling that it bears repeating.  After starting the season so sluggish, the Celtics could actually find themselves looking down instead of up.

It won’t be easy.  The Sixers are the most efficient defensive team in the league.  They are young, athletic, and have multiple players who can step up at any given night.  It may sound strange, but the real x-factor may be how Rajon Rondo and Avery Bradley can defend Lou Williams.  The undersized guard has been absolutely torching teams this year and the C’s will have to limit his effectiveness if they hope to pull out a win.  They cannot allow Williams to go off like they let Marcus Thornton do.

Prediction:

Celtics 95, Sixers 90

  • Kafel

    Celtics are going to win this!

  • lucidsportsfan

    After the beat down in Philly 16 days ago with the deadly 8 game road trip looming, who would have thought the C's would have another chance to take over first place in the Atlantic tonight?! And even though Hollins is active I hope Doc sticks with Stiemsma, after bocking 5 shots last night he now leads the league in blocks per 48 min. http://www.lucidsportsfan.com/2012_03_01_archive….

  • ripsonics

    I mean the games nationally televised on ESPN so rondo should be there…..right?

    hah! GO C'S!

  • Sugaray

    Ray Allen out tonight, apparently. Can someone confim this?

  • guest

    Pardon my language but this team can't get a fucking break…

  • someguyinsac

    Prayers and thoughts for Pietrus right now.

    • dslack

      Poor guy. The fall didn't look that awful, but his response since the fall is very scary. Hope this turns into a Pierce-wheelchair moment.

      • someguyinsac

        Hope it's a minor thing, but when you get wheeled off on a stretcher it's not exactly encouraging.

        • CelticsBIG3

          Thats a horrible thing right there. Pick up a guy today, lose another guy today. Basketball Gods have not been friendly to the Celtics. Hope Pietrus is ok.

          • ElRoz

            exactly, the higher power or whatever the heck it is: even when Ray sits, Pietrus gets hurt…then Bradley hurts his leg again…so they lose, what 3 key players for tonight…never mind the freaking Green, Wilcox, and JO…no luck….

    • dslack

      Twitter and ESPN are saying it's a closed head injury:
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Closed_head_injury

      These can be very serious in the worst cases, but can also lead to no longterm problems in the best cases. He received immediate expert medical attention, so he is in good position to respond well. Hoping for the best….

      • someguyinsac

        Thanks for the link and I'm hoping for the best for him too.

  • ElRoz

    maybe NOW Doc will play Marquis…and if he plays well, eventually he will get hurt a few days before the playoffs. ….like Bradley is doing every 3-4 games.

  • guest

    I knew the first half was too good to be true. This team can't win an important game to save their life this season it looks like.

  • Shity

    What is Doc doing? No offense and no defense either, where is the coaching?

  • someguyinsac

    12 minutes left to regroup and take back control of the game.

    Let's go C's, I'm a rootin' for ya!

  • Shity

    Why doesn't Doc bring in Bradley? He's a much better on the ball defender than Rondo. Rondo is not doing anything on the offense anyway.

    • someguyinsac

      Missed the play it happened on, but @ElRoz wrote he re-injured his leg.

  • Shity

    Damn, one game, two injuries to two defensive players.

  • Chris from Danvers

    Yeah….Bradley reinjured the ankle landing awkwardly
    Tough game….can see the steam out of them.
    prayers and thoughts with Pietrus….here's wishing you a speedy recovery

  • Luke Walker

    Guys I love my C's as much as anyone, but this is nothing more than a one and done in the playoffs team. I mean big game, nationally televised, for first place… and you give up a 37-17 3rd quarter? This team does things that I expect from the T-Wolves, but not the champion Celtics. It was a fun run the last couple of years while it lasted – but I almost would have seen it broken up rather than end like this. It's like watching Jordan huff and puff up and down the court for the Wizards. Just retire so we can remember you as a champion.

    • someguyinsac

      Get off the bandwagon then if you really feel that way. Tonight's game was going our way for the most part until Pietrus got hurt and that would take the sails out of a lot of teams, no matter who they are. Never mind that Ray was inactive and Bradley got hurt too, to boot.

      So, in other words just shove off already with that attitude of yours.

      • Luke Walker

        Really? You can't honestly believe that right? The Cs have played Philly 2 times in the past 3 weeks, both incredibly big games and they've lost by a combined 45 points in those 2 games. They've folded under the pressure in every big moment this year, starting on opening day against the Knicks. In addition they go through these long droughts where the ball barely hits the rim on offense and teams make huge runs. Look just because a fan loves his team, but knows they are going nowhere doesn't mean he's no less of a fan. Just like a fan of the Bobcats right now can say the suck. That's fine. Just like Celtics fans can say it's been a fun ride, but tough to watch the champions stagger against the ropes everytime they catch a body shot.

        • someguyinsac

          So like I said, if you're feeling that way then shove off already. I'm more worried for him and his health than losing you as a fan of the team.

          • Luke Walker

            What does the Celtics getting beat by 45 points over 2 games against Philly have anything to do with me not being concerned about Peitrus' health? WTF?

          • CelticsBIG3

            Because losing to Philly doesn't matter right now. This guy suffered a potentially bad injury, so just F U C K off

          • Luke Walker

            Wow, over-react much? Perhaps they should cancel the season.

        • jonathan

          you also do know the celtics played them both times in the second game of a back to back right?

  • tbunny

    Dude, the team was gutted after they took Pietrus off. And Bradley was out too. They looked great until Pietrus got injured. Relax and have a coke.

  • High Rollers

    Prayin' for MP, Chris, and the whole Celtic family.

    • CelticsBIG3

      Never have seen anything like this. Devasting really, and for these guys to even come out and play gutty like they do is impressive. Imagine having two of your guys go down with freak heart issues, and another guy (who I'm sure they liked but I don't) fall apart in front of your eyes. True professionals to be able to get out on the floor and rock and roll like they do.

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