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Celtics Need Quick, Healthy End to Sixers Series

 


Heading into Atlanta for game five, the Celtics had an opportunity to close the series quickly and get almost four full days of rest before the start of the second round. Those days would have allowed Paul Pierce some additional treatment and downtime on that sprained MCL ahead of a matchup with Andre Igoudala. They would have given Kevin Garnett, who logged high leverage minutes in game six, a chance go catch his breath before chasing all the Philly athletes around the floor. Most importantly, they would have given Ray Allen additional recovery time for his ankle, which has regressed from recent days. Via ESPN Boston:

[Allen] said his right ankle (bone spurs) bothered him a lot in Game 6 on Thursday and that the pain is back to where it was a couple weeks ago, when he was unable to play.

“This whole last week and a half I’ve been day to day. I’ve had some great days and now I’m back to where I was two weeks ago. I’m just working through that,” he said.

Allen said he won’t know until game time whether he’ll be able to go.

The Celtics blew game five, and barely survived game six thanks to KG’s tenacity, Josh Smith‘s Josh Smithness and a blown call by the refs. Now, less than 48 hours, they’re back into the grinder against the Sixers, who will try and run Boston off the court. Mercifully, none of the threatened playoff back-to-backs have materialized in the schedule, but what happened against Atlanta can’t happen against Philadelphia.

The Celtics need a quick, decisive end to the series (less wear and tear during the series) and a few days off before the conference finals (more rest afterwards). If they don’t get this, if the Big Three aren’t able to hit the conference finals with more gas than they have now, Miami is going to make short, quick work of this Celtics team.

It’s always been about playoff health for this Celtics team and they’ve arrived shattered to bits. In the next two weeks, they need to find four quick wins and healthier players or we’re headed for another season where LeBron James and Dwayne Wade head to the Finals, and the Celtics go home.

  • lucidsportsfan

    What if they tanked Game 1 and rested everybody tonight, kind of like what they did in that game late in the regular season vs Atlanta? http://www.lucidsportsfan.com/2012_05_06_archive….

  • UhOh!!

    I agree, we have to sweep or end it in 5(and pray the pacers stretch that series out to at least 6)if we're to have any chance against the heat but i wouldn't hold my breath this celtics team love making things hard on themselves….

  • ElRoz

    The bench – and basically non-Big 4 – need to step up: Bradley, Bass, Pietrus, Dooling, Hollins and Stiemsma at least 2-3 of these five guys need to be more productive; all five guys need to give quality minutes during the first two games at home. The bench, Bradley, and Bass HAVE to play better and be more productive. Wake up you fools – you're putting all the load on the 3 veterans instead of helping carry it.

    Yes the Celtics are banged up; health-wise it is not good. As far as rest, however, the three veterans have gotten enough rest before the end of the regular season (basically a whole week) and they have played every other day.

  • SteveB

    Game four for Boston is May 18th while Miami's game four is May 20th. Both teams potential game 7 is on May 26th. Key is to sweep Philly and hope that Miami goes at least 5 or more.

  • kevingamble

    This sentiment is wildly misplaced. Game 5 was not blown. The hawks played better and won a home game. This is standerd for the playoffs. And particularly for this cs team. Even when we were a 60 win juggernaut we did not win a lot of road playoff games.

    If you want a healthy pierce then sit him for two weeks and try and beat Philly without him. Or hope time heals. Because even if we beat Philly in 5 you can’t guarantee Miami won’t do the same.

    It’s the playoffs. No church in the wild

  • CelticsBIG3

    Headed off to Boston in a few minutes!! LETS GO CELTICS!!! Lets hope for a quick and easy victory tonight.

  • High Rollers

    No matter how banged up we arrive, I just can't see Miami making quick work of us. Just can't see that.

    As for Philly, that run-you-out-of-the-gym approach is much harder to accomplish in the pressure cooker of the playoffs. For two teams that struggle offensively and lean on their D 'til it either suffocates itself or the other team, it's going to be about who can make a few more shots than usual and have that lead to better execution in general. Our floor general has got to step up in this series. When you make it all the way to the rim, convert!

    If Ray can't go tonight, I hope to see MP find his groove… or at least find the bottom of the net a couple times.

  • skeeds

    Not to be a prick, but, isn't this piece stating the (extremely) obvious? Offcourse a sweep would be the best case scenario for the C's, it rarely is anything else for any team. And yes, the banged up, half injured core of Boston would make good use of any off time.

    The question isn't IF they should end this quick. Its if they COULD end this quick. And in my pessimistic opinion, it's unlikely. Pair Pierce's injuries, Ray's relapse and KG's fatigue, with a very athletic team coming of a huge emotional upset, it doesn't look too easy. Hopefully, we take it in 5.

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