|Kevin Garnett, PF 33 MIN | 9-19 FG | 2-2 FT | 9 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 20 PTS | +1
Garnett returned after his night off in Phoenix and looked more explosive for the extra rest. He had a couple of strong takes off the dribble, finished an alley-oop, made a number of key defensive plays and missed a 20-10 game by only one rebound. Aldridge beat him on a couple of turnarounds and interior moves but KG outplayed him tonight.
|Brandon Bass, PF 30 MIN | 5-10 FG | 1-2 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 11 PTS | -2
A Bass special. Made some jumpers that kept the floor spread for his teammates, didn’t embarrass himself driving to the basket (he had one impressive drive and finish in the first quarter), did marginal work on the boards, got blocked, logged heavy minutes anyway.
|Paul Pierce, SF 32 MIN | 9-16 FG | 4-5 FT | 7 REB | 8 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 23 PTS | +4
Came alive in the third quarter in the point forward role, making shots and creating them for others. Overall, a very efficient night for Pierce with the only tarnish being his fourth quarter fade: he missed four of his five shots, including a big three when the C’s needed one to claw back into the game.
|Avery Bradley, PG 35 MIN | 4-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | +4
Overall, Bradley did solid work on Lillard but he allowed the game-breaking layup on a high pick and roll when Lillard turned the corner, shot the lane and picked up an and-1 (to be fair, Bradley had little help from a rotating big to plug up the lane). Had a couple of nice early takes to the basket but the C’s aren’t getting enough offense out of him.
|Courtney Lee, SG 26 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | 0
The struggle fielding Lee with Bradley for long stretches is neither is a starting-quality offensive player and neither has the murderous reputation from the arc or deadly off-the-dribble game you’d like in your starting guards. Lee moved the ball on offense and did good work on defense but in a very Brandon Bass kind of way, you really wish you’d get more out of him. Then you realize he’s out of his element as a starter.
|Jeff Green, PF 31 MIN | 4-12 FG | 3-4 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 11 PTS | -17
Came crashing down to Earth tonight after his big game in Phoenix. That said, I think he played better than his stat line would suggest. He missed eight of his 12 FGAs but he got some good looks and had to force a couple of shots up to beat the shot clock. He went left off the dribble again tonight for the second game in a row, which is a nice sign he’ll be able to adapt as defenses overplay his right hand.
|Chris Wilcox, PF 16 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -7
After a big game against Phoenix, Wilcox was again responsible for a number of defensive breakdowns which undercut a couple of steals, his work on offense and cost him second-half minutes. If the Celtics could sub him in and out all game for offensive and defense, we’d really have something. As it is, Rivers still struggles to trust Wilcox, who really should be able to slip past Brandon Bass in the rotation, but isn’t anywhere close to doing so.
|Jordan Crawford, SG 12 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -1
He’s got a similar rep to Wilcox. Can do offensive damage but messes things up on the defensive end. Crawford showed the C’s his ugly side on offense tonight by playing a bit out of control and missing all four of his shots. He’s not Fab Melo but he is a project and one that will take time to acclimate to Boston’s way of doing things.
|Terrence Williams, SG 7 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | +1
Williams forced things tonight from both the perimeter (ill-advised jumpshot) and the baseline (a bad take to the basket). My sense is he, like Crawford, is trying to fit in and make his mark and, with unemployment looming should he not make good on this opportunity with the Celtics, we probably haven’t seen our last game where Williams tries too hard. Still, there are worse problems to have and the talent is undeniable. I like him more than Crawford so far, but it’s early.
|Jason Terry, SG 19 MIN | 1-4 FG | 2-2 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -13
Terry was a non-entity tonight, a reminder that, like earlier in the year, there are a lot of other guards getting minutes and looks at his expense. If Crawford/Williams don’t get the job done, Terry will get more burn again soon.