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Alive: Celtics 101, Heat 91

 

Boston Celtics 101 FinalRecap | Box Score 91 Miami Heat
Paul Pierce, SF 41 MIN | 7-21 FG | 7-7 FT | 4 REB | 4 AST | 23 PTS | +10

While Pierce didn’t take over the game by any means, he attacked the basket far more than we’re accustomed to seeing.  It was a beautiful thing.  10 of his 21 field goal attempts came from within the key and the shots he took in his sweet spots didn’t come off as forced like they can at times.  Instead, it was surprising when they didn’t go in.Pierce was also the beneficiary of having to guard Shane Battier instead of being close to the exclusive defender of LeBron James.  This allowed him to not only stay fresh but also only commit 3 personal fouls.

Brandon Bass, PF 17 MIN | 1-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 4 PTS | -8

Bass couldn’t stay on the court to earn anything better or worse than a C+.  He picked up some early fouls and was relatively ineffective on both ends of the court.  He had some strong takes to the basket and earned to questionable offensive fouls as well as some unexpected non-calls when attempting some dunks.  I give him bonus points for not completely losing his mind out there after getting clobbered without a whistle.

Kevin Garnett, PF 34 MIN | 10-16 FG | 4-6 FT | 11 REB | 1 AST | 24 PTS | +27

This is a shared grade between Doc Rivers and Kevin Garnett.  If I told you before the game started that KG would only attempt one long jump shot from a kickout pass?  KG and Rivers made a huge adjustment after Games 1 and 2 and KG lived in the paint tonight.  This is something the Celtics need to keep doing until the Heat stop them.

Ray Allen, SG 38 MIN | 4-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | +2

Ray played solid half court defense on Dwyane Wade, only committed 1 dumb foul (my unofficial count), and hit two corner threes in the first half.  If Ray can hit threes in the early going, it completely changes the complexion of Miami’s defense and spaces the floor.  I hesitate to say his shot is back but I will saw that both threes makes looked really good.I will say that Ray still falls asleep in transition which is mind-boggling to me.  How can he forget about Dwyane Wade streaking up the sideline?  It’s like death and taxes.  Dwyane Wade trying to get cheap points in transition is a certainty.

Rajon Rondo, PG 43 MIN | 9-16 FG | 4-6 FT | 6 REB | 10 AST | 21 PTS | +5

This may sound absurd, but Rondo may have played better tonight than he did on Wednesday.  He had to completely carry the Celtics in Game 2 which caused him to force plays and shots at times.  Let’s also keep in mind that two if his threes came when the game was essentially over.  I’m not writing this to rain on anyone’s Rondo parade.  I’m simply highlighting how he was so great tonight.  He completely gave the Celtics and the game what it needed tonight and didn’t have to carry anyone.  He attacked, he found his teammates, and he defended Wade and James masterfully.  Did he get caught in limbo for a few Mike MIller threes in the second half?  Sure.  As always, I’m willing to live with some moments of Rondo being out of position defensively if he does everything else he does so well.

Marquis Daniels, SG 17 MIN | 4-6 FG | 1-2 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 9 PTS | +14

I can’t even begin to describe what Daniels’ 17+ minutes meant to the C’s tonight. He made excellent cuts to the basket, he rebounded the ball, and he played excellent defense on Wade and James. Both he and Dooling allowed Rondo and Pierce to get some much needed rest after the marathon they ran in Game 2. If he continues to contribute, the Celtics just became immensely deeper.

Keyon Dooling, PG 20 MIN | 3-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 7 PTS | +10

Sure, he commits silly fouls, doesn’t make an effort to prevent And-1s, and provides close to nothing on offense, but other than Garnett he is the most aggressive defender the Celtics have.  It’s so sad that Avery Bradley isn’t able to play in this series.  I can just picture what havoc Dooling and Bradley could be wreaking on Wade and Mario Chalmers.  Alas, perhaps next season.

Ryan Hollins, C 6 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | 0

One personal foul in 6+ minutes is all Hollins logged.  He also ran into Pierce on what looked to be a successful drive to the basket, causing Pierce to have to kick the ball out to reset.  I’m inviting everyone to submit their theories of why, as an athletic seven-footer, he cannot snag a rebound to save his life.

Mickael Pietrus, SF 20 MIN | 0-2 FG | 2-2 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -4

It’s tough to give Pietrus such a low grade because in the fourth quarter he was really victim of a poor substitution pattern by Doc.  He was completely out of sorts on the defensive end and he was contributing nothing on offense.  Earlier in the game, however, he played excellent defense and rebounded the ball well.

Greg Stiemsma, C 4 MIN | 0-0 FG | 1-2 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 1 PTS | -3
Stiemsma didn’t play a lot, but when he did, he made an excellent roll to the basket and drew a foul.  He almost established the idea the Celtics were going to attack the basket in the first quarter with that play.  If Stiemsma is getting to the hoop and drawing fouls, what was Pierce, Rondo, and Garnett going to be doing all game?  Well, you saw it.
  • greenboner

    26 to 20 fta's by celtics.fuckin magic.

  • someguyinsac

    I'm proud to be a Celtic fan, tonight and every night.

    Great game from everyone and extra kudos to MD.

  • Anthony

    Awesome win!

    Even though it was a good win there's still lots to critique. Pietrus is playing horrible on both end. He seem like he's scared to play D on Dwade and Lebron. And he lets everyone just drive by him. And he falls for the pump fakes. Bass' defense isn't quite there either but at least that's not what we fans expect from him.

    Quis and Keyon play big. Our bench is already so depleted but these guys stepped up. Love their effort. The team gave a minor scare in the 4th quarter but it's nothing compared to how tough the team usually makes things. Just glad we got the win. 3 more and we can go to the Finals.

    Go Celts!!

  • Batman

    I thought KG was gonna crank out 50 pushups right there
    Its a series again guys…..win Game 4 and put pressure back on Miami
    Based Rondo back at it again

    • janos

      HI Batmam, is Janos
      I could not beleive pushup, i have not done on many years, and not start tonight! Leave to expert. Great game for us!

      • Batman

        yes indeed Janos
        I am with you on those pushups, I'd be sucking wind if i tried more than 10!

  • JR99

    Decent officiating = Celtics win. Pretty simple.

  • janos

    totals flipped flop them on game 2, ;no problem win when fair fight. balance win ver y nice to see. no more say, job not done yet but will be soon !.

  • I_Love_Green

    The heart of this entire roster is seriously incredible. Marquis Daniels gets his first big minute game in months, and steps up HUGE! Avery goes down, and Dooling steps up.

    Man I love this team.

  • ripsonics

    thats whats up baby. great game from the men in green.

    lets say we go back to KG next game, and Miami is ready for his shot down low – we can kick it out and make it rain from three..

    HOW BOUT THE HAMMA SLAMMA FROM RAYRAY

    Go C's

  • Zee

    We’re now up 2-1. Oh, I forgot, we had a game stolen from us. Game 4 up next… CAN’T WAIT!

  • george

    Love my Celtics, for more than half a century now. I bleed green.

  • IBleedGreen

    KG you are my f$&@%#* hero

  • CelticsBIG3

    If you haven't seen KG's post game in the locker room, here it is. Must see http://www.csnne.com/pages/celticsvideo?PID=uvXM2
    "The Jungle was F@#$IN ROCKING 2NITE!"

  • bernabem

    i wasnt nearly as disappointed in the game 2 loss because I was just so happy rondo did what he did. But this win was the best thing ever.

  • Rich

    Rondo was great tonight, but this is a silly statement "He had to completely carry the Celtics in Game 2 which caused him to force plays and shots at times."

    So what if he forced things? He went 16-24 in game 2 and only had 3 turnovers. So even if he was forcing things at times, it worked out almost every time. Just sort of nonsense to say he played better tonight than last game.

  • Phil

    The impressive play by Daniels and Dooling tonight makes me excited about the possibility of the Celtics going small a lot more going forward. Hollins is terrible, and I seriously doubt any lineup featuring Bass or Stiemsma is going to be overly successful in this series (outside of the big four plus Bass perhaps.) Playing small got them a ton of good looks this game, and while Miami will adjust, those won't just go away.

    The Celtics offensive improvement really can't be undersold here. They were really really bad in like 14 of 16 games before game 2. Now they've broken 100 in back to back games. They've managed to win and almost win two games in which they're defense wasn't great/Miami's offense was. That's something I never expected coming in.

    • Anthony

      Although Hollins brings good energy, he is pretty awful. I'm wondering how much Sean Williams can provide. He's obviously a better shot blocker and no way in hell can he be a worse rebounder than Hollins.

      I think the offensive outburst is a result of 1 key element – Ray was able to knock down his first couple of shots. He's had a history of good games against Miami. But coming in, Miami probably wasn't as concerned about him because of his injury. I anticipate a big game from Bass coming. He had good effort tonite but unfortunately was hampered by foul trouble.

  • Chris Nordenlöw

    A great great win. I hope Doc gives Pavlo a chance in one of the next games, especially if Pietrus continues with his poor play (even though he goes for the offensive boards well). I think Pavlo also has a MD game in him, especially on our home floor. Well, time to get nervous for sundays showdown..

  • Moxie

    I wonder if Bass having to sit early because of foul trouble was a lucky accident in a way. The lineup doc had to resort to with Bass out really wreaked havoc out there! Wonder if we would've had the same commanding performance through the first three quarters had Doc gone with his usual lineups.

    Quis and Dooling playing Celtics basketball! Such a joy to watch!

    • CelticsBIG3

      I thought things went badly from the moment Bass came back in the game early in the 4th. Broke the rhythm… Sorry BB but it seems to look that way.

  • tbunny

    The Heat looked like the old Cavs last night.

  • IBleedGreen

    I hate Lebron but dude is a beast. Best player in the NBA not even close.

    • Brian

      Lebron single handedly tried to keep Miami in the game tonight while Wade was forcing up bad shots and trying to get the refs to bail him out again. I'm surprised he didn't try another cheap takedown like he did on Rondo last year.

      • Phil

        I find it a little funny that Lebron gets all the hate while Wade is generally liked. I understand its because of the Decision and because Lebron's the best, but Wade is so much more unlikeable when you factor in actual on court stuff. Lebron sucks with PR. Wade is petulant, plays dirty, and his whole game is based around exaggerating weak contact to draw fouls. His favorite new hobby now is arguing calls while everyone else is getting back on defense. Watch him in transition, he does it two or three times a game.

        It may be a little blasphemous, but I really enjoy watching Lebron play. Wade, not so much.

        • skeeds

          yep. I never understood why people like Wade either. Ok, he did win a championship very young, I give him that. But he's an extremely unlikable person. I'm talking purely on the court.
          Granted, green vision might be stopping me from disliking PP for the same reasons, (diva, plays hero ball, has made a huge chunk of his points by forcing contact and drawing fouls), but hey, PP never played nasty. And Wade's very, very nasty.

          Luckily, a good byproduct of having him and Lebron on the same team, is that Wade will only be considered the Robin to LBJ's Batman for ever. And rightfully so. Lebron's freaking amazing to watch. I was too young to remember watching Magic play, but I guess that's what it must've felt like…

  • scott

    I fucking love this team. More so than 2007-8. Just as much as '86. Not saying they are definitely winning the title but this is how fans must have felt in '69. They leave everything on the court.

    Fan since 75

  • Rav

    I have so much respect for Marquis Daniels. First, he came on to the floor having barely played this whole year, and instead of loafing it put in a high-effort, consistent and pretty much game-changing performance. True professional.

    More than that, though, does anyone remember how much money he sacrificed to come to the Celtics and win a championship? He was probably looking at an $16M/4yr contract, but signed with us for the Biennial Exception instead. He played well, but then came the thumb injury, the heartbreak in the Finals in 2010, and then his life-threatening spinal problems – over the last 3 years, he's only made $6M in salary and hasn't won that trophy yet. I hope we win it this year, just for that guy.

    P.S. I love how opinions change so quickly. About 2 months ago people wanted to throw Dooling in a trash can. Now they want him back next year!

  • rajon's headband

    how does dooling only get a b?!?!?! his defense changed the game he scored 7 points off the bench. A game for dooling, what more can we expect from him? that was sensational

  • tbunny

    Also, what did I say about Ray's shot? I said even though he was missing, his rotation was looking better. Against philly he looked pitiful. He's running now like he finally had some cortisone hit the spot or something, lol. That or he's somehow getting form back with bones floating around his ankles. I don't really understand it.

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