|Brandon Bass, PF 23 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 8 PTS | -2
As part of my job duties at CelticsHub, I’m responsible for killing Bass for his rebounding woes and other obvious tangible deficiencies, but even outmatched against Smith and Horford, he hung in there tonight and set people free on offense with a couple of useful picks. Faint praise, sure. Just once I’d like to see him dominate.
|Paul Pierce, SF 39 MIN | 10-16 FG | 4-6 FT | 7 REB | 7 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 27 PTS | +2
Crept up on a sleeping triple-double without quite waking it. Pierce was the offensive beacon again tonight, lighting the way for Jason Terry’s heroics and beaming in a batch of clutch shots. My two favorites: the step-back two-ball towards the end of regulation he usually employs against the Knicks and the 27-foot contested three in overtime. It’s worth mentioning that despite the burden he carried, Pierce managed to do his damage efficiently (27 points on 16 shots).
|Kevin Garnett, C 35 MIN | 7-16 FG | 2-2 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 17 PTS | +9
A rock solid night for Garnett. Without him, or with a VORP-style replacement in his place, the C’s lose this game by 20. My two favorite plays were the three-ball chased with the profane shout and another sighting of the up-and-under move I’ve been longing for since KG threw it at Pau Gasol in the 2008 finals.
|Avery Bradley, PG 38 MIN | 2-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 5 PTS | 0
A marginal night for Bradley, who came up empty on offense and despite a couple of “hey, Avery stole the ball again” kind of moments, struggled against Jeff Teague, who zipped all over the court like there wasn’t anybody in front of him.
|Courtney Lee, SG 28 MIN | 2-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 4 PTS | +6
I like how Lee is playing. He’s within himself on offense without sacrificing the aggression necessary to, say, throw down a transition dunk. If you upped his usage, you’d get more out of him. But there’s no need to do that right now.
|Jeff Green, PF 36 MIN | 5-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 12 PTS | +10
Less offensive impact than you’d like although he racked up another loud highlight dunk tonight and clattered in a key three-ball. His defense is becoming an area of comfort, though, isn’t it? He’s still not immune to size but his focus on the floor is light years ahead of November. I’m not mad at him anymore. I almost miss it.
|Chris Wilcox, PF 13 MIN | 1-1 FG | 4-4 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 6 PTS | -7
The man the Celtics preferred to offload in the Crawford trade again underwhelmed on defense. He may have been a victim of Doc’s small lineups which routinely included three guards but it’s odd to see him get only 13 minutes against Atlanta’s quality bigs in a game that went to OT.
|Jordan Crawford, SG 15 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | +5
I can already see how challenging it’s going to be to grade Crawford on nights when some of his ludicrous shots actually go down. He made at least a couple of atrocious decisions with the ball, somehow finished his own pass for a layup and was, to my eyes, competent on defense (especially on a night when Bradley struggled).
|Terrence Williams, SG 2 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 0 PTS | -4
|Jason Terry, SG 36 MIN | 5-11 FG | 6-6 FT | 4 REB | 5 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 19 PTS | +6
He was involved in two of the biggest plays of the game and scored the last five points of overtime (that was a tough three ball – he got it up there quickly). Terry also managed 4 rebounds and 5 assists, which are huge numbers for him. Probably not a turning point, but at 36 minutes, he’s got Doc’s trust and he’ll keep getting run out there.