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

 

Boston at Miami
8:30 P.M. ET
AmericanAirlines Arena
ESPN

Offensive Efficiency:
Boston: 95.6 points/100 possessions (11th)
Miami: 106.2 points/100 possessions (3rd)

Defensive Efficiency:
Boston: 93.7 points allowed/100 possessions (2nd)
Miami: 93.5 points allowed/100 possessions (1st)

Key Injuries: Avery Bradley and Chris Bosh are out, Ray Allen has bone spurs that has rendered him completely ineffective to this point

Probable Miami Starters: Almario Vernard Chalmers (PG), Dwyane Wade (SG), LeBron Raymone James (SF), Shane Battier (PF), Ronny Turiaf (C)

View From The Opposing Bench: Heat Index

Thumbnail: 

I hope the Celtics win convincingly tonight.  I hope LeBron James and Dwyane Wade have awful games.  I hope the Celtics regain their suffocating brand of defense and force Wade and James to brick long jumper after long jumper.  I hope the Celtics frustrate the Heat role players so much that they look lost and uncomfortable trying to pass the ball back out to one of their saviors.  I hope Rajon Rondo and Kevin Garnett put up a triple-double and a double-double, respectively.  I hope Paul Pierce completely outplays James like he did back in Game 7 of the 2008 Eastern Conference Semi-Finals.

I want all this to happen not as a selfish-Celtics’-footy-pajama-wearing green-teamer.  I want this all to happen because I can’t wait to see the narrative shift that happens in its aftermath; the complete 180 the media will do if the Celtics dominate tonight- ourselves included.

To this point, it’s not really our fault that we’ve gone completely off the deep end to favor the Heat.  LeBron James and Co finished off the Pacers fairly easily in 6 games while the Celtics struggled to beat Philadelphia in 7.  Kevin Garnett has slowly regressed from the dominant force he was to start the playoffs and Ray Allen has completely disappeared.  Meanwhile, James and Wade have continued their streak of stellar play against a much better defensive team than Indiana and perhaps even played their most efficient offensive games of the playoffs in Game 1.

I don’t want this to continue.  I want to see a good, competitive series.  I want people to stop writing teams off after one game.  I want people to stop making little things into these big statements about a whole series, a whole team, a whole season, or a whole era. Like this:

For the past two days, this moment was seen as LeBron James laughing at Kevin Garnett as if to say, “there is nothing you can do to stop me.” What I saw LIVE and what I still see now is James taking a hard foul and then extending the ball to the official and repeating the word “Ed” for the official Ed Malloy (even though Jason Phillips ends up taking it).  Is there gamesmanship here? Sure.  But when everyone decided to see James mocking the big bad bully Garnett, I saw James trying to tattle. 

Look!  Ed!  Look what he’s doing! He’s taunting!

If you knew James, you’d know he doesn’t get in people’s faces like that and laugh at them.  He let’s his game do the talking in the trenches and showboats when he’s completely alone on the break.  Aside from throwing a cowardly elbow and then playing it off like nothing happened, James completely avoids confrontation.

The moment captured in the video wasn’t even what prompted Rondo to suggest that the Celtics need to play with more toughness.  It was the ease to which James and Wade got to the rim and finished.  Protecting the rim is a big reason why the Celtics have seen so much success in the big three era.  I would hate to have tonight’s game tarnished by quick whistles resulting from what seems like an obvious gameplan from the Celtics.

Quick whistles will also beget moments like this:

To take the physicality out of this series would be to end it before it began.  And that flop embarrassing.

Please note: this preview is not meant to be a complete takedown of LeBron James.  He is the best player in the world.  Head and shoulders above everyone else.  Which means he doesn’t need to do the things that make people dislike him so very much.

From the Celtics perspective, a few things need to happen in order for the C’s to win tonight:

  • The defense has to return and protect dribble penetration.  The Celtics had long stretches where they couldn’t stop any member of the Heat.  The Celtics are much better on the pick and roll and are a much better defensive rebounding team.  The must show it.
  • Kevin Garnett needs to establish himself on the block early and often regardless of who is guarding him.
  • The Celtics need something, anything, from Ray Allen and Mickael Pietrus other than just slowing down Wade.
  • Doc Rivers cannot over-extend Pierce and Garnett.  Rivers diverted pretty sharply from Garnett’s 5-5-5 plan in Game 1 and it resulted in Garnett being completely useless on the perimeter in the fourth quarter.

I won’t even dare to predict the outcome of this game.

 

  • I_Love_Green

    Come out with more fight tonight….that is all.

  • CelticsBIG3

    Nice start with a chinsy foul

  • IBleedGreen

    Rondo's layup is worse than his jumper…sad

  • I_Love_Green

    4 fouls on Greg….in 3 minutes.

  • IBleedGreen

    LMFAO Steisma…

  • I_Love_Green

    If Rondo can't keep this up, and nobody else steps up, the heat will easily win this.

    Rondo needs help on offense!

    • IBleedGreen

      I am very disappointed at KG's first half performance. 3/10 shooting, only 4 rebounds, and everything is from outside.

      • I_Love_Green

        I know he needs to get his ass in the post. I mean Turiaf cannot defend him there, KG is too tall.

  • Switcharoo

    RONDO!!! The dude is on fire!

  • stephen

    The most lopsided officiating I have ever seen. Typical, the C;s completly outplayed them in the first half and only walk away with a 7 point lead. Some things never f — ing change!!!!!

  • IBleedGreen

    I predict KG wakes up in the 4th quarter and drops 15 on the Heat…C's win by 5

  • Switcharoo

    Yup the refs were the same in G1 what made you think tonight would be any different. S’okay though because it’s coming to Boston, then we’lll see what LilBron and DWad do without their pocket refs. My prediction is without their homer officials they’ll turn dirty.

  • I_Love_Green

    And here it goes…..

  • Switcharoo

    Okay sooooo when is the rest of the boys gonna start playing? Come on you guys Swag can play the whole game himself. When was the last game where RR was the lead scorer?

  • noche

    Rondo needs to get back into attack mode.

  • WTF

    Rondo stopped attacking since 9min into the 3rd quarter. why? Just cannot figure him out.

    • The Cardinal

      He's f'ing tired! Dude has played the whole game, gotten to the line a bunch, taken a bunch of punishment in the lane – he's human.

  • WTF

    How could they let the Heat score 35 pts in a quarter, where was the defense?

  • I_Love_Green

    A technical on that?

    Come on NBA….

  • WTF

    Chalmers got 20pts? Why did the C's overcommit on double teaming either Wade or James? Let them get theirs and shut everyone else down.

    • CelticsBIG3

      wrong

  • mugi

    FML RR transformed into rojan rando in the 2nd half, attack dammit.

  • WTF

    Still very winnable game. Do not turn the ball over and take the time.

  • I_Love_Green

    I feel like I've seen this game before :/

  • Milt Pilacio

    Man, the c's really can't close a game anymore…

  • WTF

    What was Rondo doing? He stopped defending Wade and just let him make a huge play?

  • Switcharoo

    6’1″ 186lbs and carrying the whole team on his back. Win or lose (please for the love of god let it be a win) Rondo has had a freakin awesome game tonight! 32 pts and counting, not to mention working up to a triple D. The kid is a beast, but god damn he’s got to be getting tired.
    Just hope it isn’t naught

  • WTF

    RAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Milt Pilacio

    Ray Allen I counted you out, you are the man for making this a game still

  • WTF

    KG is truly old now. He would have come up and taken that rebound with authority even 3 years ago.

  • WTF

    OK, PP out, Rondo time.

  • janos

    win/lose I am so fucking proud this team. I am see on seriest start, web manger , all , going oh heat on 4,5,6 game of win??

    only look stat paper not heart, player

    Is not series until team make road win so ETHER way this punch mouth heat and OUr time go!!

  • WTF

    come on, you gotta to come back for the defense.

  • WTF

    Unbelievable Rondo!

  • Switcharoo

    @ Janos; lol Man half the fun of this forum is deciphering your post, and here I thought Yoda talked funny. It’s all good though Janos, all good.

  • WTF

    Rondo got hit! Where was the call?

  • WTF

    heck, what was KG doing? Why the pass?

  • WTF

    Fxxk, the Ref really screwed the Cs without that no call.

    • WTF

      with the no call

  • yeah

    So… that lack of a headshot call could have decided the game.

  • someguyinsac

    Jackwads blew that foul on Rondo and changed the momentum of the OT.

  • I_Love_Green

    So proud of Rondo…excited for the future with him.

  • tbunny

    God I hate the heat fans.

  • noche

    REFS WIN ANOTHER GAME FOR THE HEAT ASKLGHA;LFASLKGJHASFLKASGK;SEG;LS.

    Okay really the Garnett/Bass fumble at the end killed the C's run BUT. The Wade smacking Rondo in the face and then kicking KG in the leg (no call then foul on KG) is a 5 point swing.

    Also, no one is ever allowed to say anything bad about Rondo again.

  • mugi

    rondo has some serious range lol

  • Switcharoo

    Rondo scores 44 point hands out 10 dimes and they still,STILL could pull this one off. Unreal. I’m going to bed a pretend I never saw this.

  • Switcharoo

    [COULD'NT] I mean

  • Anthony.B

    The ref suck Ray got hit on 2 3 the ref didn't call nothing man I hate ref the KG a foul called on him Wade kick him so he couldn't block the shot BS all a around 33FT Mia Bos 18 that is crazy I wish I could slap a ref face of

  • Anthony.B

    O yeah and Rondo got hit in the face they didn't call nothing

  • Anthony.B

    WoW

  • Ryan DeGama

    Post game grades are on their way, folks. Still processing.

    Here are the press conferences if you want them: http://www.nba.com/live1/

    • janos

      hi ryan, is janos

      Please, is not time, not after this , for play games grade tonight.

      YOu give Rondos A+ , I cannot take other wise. NOt tonight.

  • janos

    How i can make demand, official, know under authority whom – this game judge tonight? Is not fair and I dont want whine, is not my characters, but this simply not of fair. All number showing foul, Pierce, double heat player. This crap happen on kings/lakers before times, and ref going jail or something? and now us happens.. when is end? is fine when put fix on team nobody care (new orlens win lotto…who care …charlote is bum) but for celtics?? is top team on league ever come on. when we become second clas citizens to heat?

    I am upset.

  • Tos

    Damn. Despite RR simply INCREDIBLE performance…

    We really got screwed this game, real bad.

  • Switcharoo

    [COULD'NT] I mean
    And speaking of couldn’t…..
    Moore
    Pavlovic
    Daniels
    Hollins…..couldn’t contribute any less.
    And while I’m still here let me just add one more tidbit of opinion
    The Miami has the best refs THEIR money can buy. I mean really, nearly twice as many fouls called on the Cs, DWad knocking Rondo upside the head , kicking on KG and suddenly the refs go blind? WTF is wrong with this picture. Mark my words, when they come to Boston it’s gonna get nasty. The Heat are gonna play dirty because they’ll have to in order to hang with the Celts. And if it’s gonna be like that then I hope we have some homer refs to give them a taste of their own medicine.
    I am not giving up on these guys I love the Celtics too damn much.
    FOR BANNER 18!!! GO CELTICS!!!

  • CelticsBIG3

    FUCK ME. Thats all I have to say. What else you supposed to do. I probably won't be able to watch the NBA anymore. The non-call on Rondo getting hit in the face cost us the game. Total bullshit.

    • CelticsBIG3

      Seriously… I'm straight done I think. I LOVE this team but what ELSE CAN YOU FUCKING DO. GODDAM IT. It's so frustrating. GODDAM IT

  • Moxie

    I miss Avery. :(

    • CelticsBIG3

      I miss the old days of the NBA when the team who worked the hardest got the win. FUCK THIS.

  • JoeAlvarez

    Regardless of what happens with the rest of this series, I’m so proud of rondo and the strides he’s made as a player this season. I can’t wait to pick up some size and youth with the our back to back first round picks and spend some of this cap space on players who can run with him. People say top tier free agents don’t want to come to Boston, but of Rondo is able to play at his true potential he is all the superstar we need!

  • yordgreat

    the fucking refs will make sure that the heat will win the championship this year. book it! i hope pop kills a couple of this fucking zebras. total fucking bullshit officiating

  • Batman

    I witnessed history
    This loss hurts the worst since Game 7
    I'm shook

    • I_Love_Green

      Rondo though <3

      • Batman

        Rondo had an all time great performance
        washed away by a single letter…..L
        I'm deeply saddened

        • CelticsBIG3

          Me too and good to see you Batman. Sad predicament the NBA is. The Celtics have NO chance with this bullshit i am seeing

    • tbunny

      No. It just sucks to lose to a team that I hate with a fanbase I hate. All of them frontrunners.

  • JR99

    My list of the refs "greatest" calls in this game… which was actually an improvement over game 1… pretty damn hard to imagine:

    Q3 – Wade’s block of Ray’s layup is a foul — he pushes Ray’s torso as he goes up for the block. Refs screw up.

    Q3 – James runs into Dooling who is STANDING STILL, but a block is called. A clear charge. Refs screw up again.

    Q4 – 5th foul on Pierce: wrong call. Refs screw up again.

    Q4 – Pierce 6th foul: Pierce went straight up in the air, and was not in the restricted area. The charge is called a blocking foul. Refs screw up again.

    OT – Rondo is hit hard in the eye on a layup, and because there’s no call, the Heat get an easy 2 points on the other end. 4 point swing. (The difference in the game? 4 points.)

    Whole Game – Every little touch on Lebron James was whistled. It happened all game long, but got worse in the final minutes of regulation and OT.

  • stephen

    Celtics–29 free throws—-Lebron–24 free throws—All by himself === Miami—-47 free throws–Let's see-That's a difference of 18—with both teams being equally physical — The next time anyone tells me that the NBA isn't fixed I'm going to punch em right in the fuckin mouth !!!!!!!!

  • IBleedGreen

    Fuck this I can’t sleep tonight

    • CelticsBIG3

      Unfortunately I have work in the morning. And I'm a high school teacher surrounded by idiotic kids who are Heat fans… Who over the last 170 days have told me the Celtics suck. It's fun at times but now…. I'm tired of this @KingJames YOU ARE A BITCH YOUR TEAM IS FILLED WITH "2002 STYLE LAKERS VS. KINGS JIPJOBBERS"

      • Moxie

        My siblings are Heat fans, and they've been maliciously smirking at me for days. Sometimes I just want to bash their heads against the wall to make them understand that LeBron, Wade, and the Heat are a friggin disgrace to what the game of basketball is supposed to be. How can my own flesh and blood be so blind to this??? ARRRRGH.

  • Switcharoo

    Vince McMahon would be proud. @ IBG: Yea I can’t sleep either after witnessing that spectical. I know what the topic at works gonna be this morning for sure.

    • CelticsBIG3

      It really is like the WWE. If anybody was a watcher back in the day this reminds me of when Vince came out and rang the bell on Bret Hart when Shawn Michaels had him in a Sharpshooter for like 3 seconds and Vince rang the bell. David Stern might as well have run out on the floor tonight and shot the Celtics in the chest. Fucking asshole.

  • tbunny

    Struggling to describe why I loathe Dwayne Wade. I don't mind so much the punk play. He backs it up well enough. It's the smugness of it.

    Lebron carried the Heat. Although the ref's basically decided beforehand that Pierce couldn't guard Lebron, so he would be getting called early and often (if he can't guard him, all contact is a foul right?). But Lebron did what he had to do to keep the heat in the game. It was really a classic duel game. But Rondo was better and deserved to win. And Pierce deserved to at least be present for the end.

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