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Game 49: Lakers (23-26) @ Celtics (25-23) Open Thread

http://a.espncdn.com/i/mag/2008issues/061608/sportsguy.jpgLos Angeles at Boston
8:00 P.M. ET
TD Garden

TNT

Offensive Efficiency:
Boston: 100.2 points/100 possessions (20th)
Los Angeles:
105.3 points/100 possessions (8th)

Defensive Efficiency:
Boston: 99.9 points allowed/100 possessions (6th)
Los Angeles:
 102.8 points allowed/100 possessions (16th)

Probable Lakers Starters:
Steve Nash (PG), Kobe Bryant (SG), Metta World Peace (SF), Earl Clark (PF), and Robert Sacre (C)

View From The Opposing Bench: Forum Blue and Gold

Thumbnail: Make it five consecutive victories for the Celtics! They outscored the Raptors 30-16 in the fourth quarter on Wednesday and had one of their best comeback wins of the season. Boston hopes to bring this momentum from Canada to TD Garden on Thursday against the Lakers. In addition, Kevin Garnett could reach the 25,000-point milestone. If he scores six points, he would bring back flashbacks of Ray Allen’s record-setting night almost two years ago on the same stage. At TD Garden on February 10th, 2011, Allen surpassed Reggie Miller for the most three-pointers made all-time in a loss to the Lakers.

Now in 2013, the Allen-less Celtics have another player who will be rewriting the record books. Garnett hopes the result of the game is different this time around. The Celtics enter Thursday as winners of five consecutive games while the Lakers have been victorious in three straight and six of their last seven. However, Los Angeles will be without Pau Gasol, who is out for at least six weeks with a partial tear of his plantar fascia. The team could also be missing Dwight Howard, who has been out for the last three games with a shoulder injury.

While the Celtics bench did not impress as well as on Wednesday as it has been recently, Leandro Barbosa continues to step up with his increased playing time. For the third consecutive game, he scored in double-digits, his longest streak this season. Paul Pierce made up for the bench’s somewhat weak play with his 35th regular season double-double since 2007-08. The Celtics are now 29-6 in those games. Look for Pierce to continue his strong rebounding with both Rajon Rondo and Jared Sullinger sidelined.

Prediction: The Celtics push their winning streak to six games, which ties their season-best one in January.

Celtics 98, Lakers 95

For more Celtics coverage and pertinent statistics, follow Celtics Hub and Stats Adam Lowenstein on Twitter: @CelticsHub and @StatsAdam

  • Matt

    Howard is playing….

  • Phil725

    Transition is what I'm going to watch for tonight. The Lakers have sucked with transition D all year, and the Cs could have some big time opportunities there, especially once the quicker bench lineups come in.

  • Phil725

    Transition is what I'm going to watch for tonight. The Lakers have sucked with transition D all year, and the Cs could have some big time opportunities there, especially once the quicker bench lineups come in.

    Edit: Ugh, KG with 2 quick fouls. Luckily Jason Collins' claim to fame is being the Dwight stopper.

    Double ugh, refs.

  • skeeds

    God damn. Howard's gonna make all our bigs foul out before halftime. How on earth we've managed to stay above .500 with such a weak frontline is beyond me…

  • KillerGymRat

    KG = 25,000 + points!!

  • KillerGymRat

    Steve Kerr is clearly Team Keep KG and PP!

    Smart man. At least on that point.

  • Phil725

    There was a good Wilcox vs Bass segment right there. It looked like Doc sat Wilcox after he got beat off the dribble for an easy layup by Jamison… two plays later, Bass got beat by the exact same thing. I'm not really arguing that it's a bad move, since Wilcox isn't having his normal effect on offense and Bass is playing better, but anyone who cites defense reasons alone for Bass playing over Wilcox is off (including Doc.)

    Cs are playing really well offensively though. It doesn't look like they're doing any one thing great, just moving the ball and hitting the open shots they get. Still waiting for a few more transition buckets though.

  • Art

    C's up by 15, and it makes me nervous. Let's see if they can maintain the lead and not let their foot of the gas. Go Cs!

    • Phil725

      Third quarters after a big lead at halftime have been a big problem all year. I hope they keep this up though, they look like they were ready to bring it for LA, and they can't let their foot off the gas.

      Post 3rd quarter update: Wasn't a problem!

  • Anthony

    Trying to count the amount of times Dwight is in the lane for at least 3+ secs.

    Come on refs!

  • The Cardinal

    Should the C's hang-on for a victory (and I trust that they will), preemptively I leave the disbelieving infidels with this:
    "It just goes to show you, it's always something! If it's not one thing, it's another!" – Roseanne Roseannadanna

  • Phil725

    There was a second there where I thought Bradley was going to absolutely destroy Howard. Howard got up in time to give the good, hard foul though.

    The Cs started the second half with a couple of turnovers, but things are still clicking now. Strong performance so far. Kobe's keeping LA in the game, and that's despite Lee being in his shirt on every shot. Those two have been lots of fun to watch.

    • Art

      I hope you're talking about Lee and Bradley.

      I'm ready for a few monster slams from Green.

  • Switcharoo

    Lol I’m loving what I’m seeing in the 3rd, up by 20. Don’t take you foot off the gas guys.
    AB is all over Nash like a bad rash.

  • Phil725

    I just got blasted by a wall of flame through my TV. The Cs are on fire!

    What a block by Green too!

  • KillerGymRat

    Yes…the Lakers suck even when Pau is playing and Howard is healthy… but damn this is fun to watch.

  • mugi

    wow what a sequence. dunk then block. need more o that Green. then the three. wooooooooo

  • Switcharoo

    My god that was from dowwwwnnnnn towwwwnnnnn!
    Pierce is in the zone now, he’ll they all are.

  • Art

    I love the fact that the C's are up by 18 and still playing hard, and on the second night of a back-to-back no less.

  • KillerGymRat

    Yeah, Steve Kerr is DEFINITELY Team Keep KG and PP!!

    Thanks for speaking up and hopefully talking sense into Team Blow it Up.

  • Josh_5

    KG watching Gino = priceless!! Also, this game has me so happy I wanna buy everyone on this blog a drink!!

    • Anthony

      I'll drink to that!

      I could've sworn Barbosa scored. Even Fab scored!

      KG 25K, Pierce FU 3 to LA fans, JGreen dunk and block, AB awesome steal, etc… just an enjoyable game.

  • KillerGymRat

    So I'm sure there will be lots of talk as to why this win isn't a big deal. But I'm going to enjoy the hell out of it. For the following reasons:

    1) I hate the Lakers
    2) 32 pt lead/37 pt 3rd quarter
    3) Great team defense and offense
    4) WIlcox playing effective minutes (arguably defended Howard the best)
    5) I still hate the Lakers

    Oh and don't look now…we're in 7th place.