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Celtics-Mavericks Grades

Boston Celtics 94 Final

Recap | Box Score

104 Dallas Mavericks
Note: Grades written by Adam Lowenstein
Brandon Bass, PF 34 MIN | 4-9 FG | 8-8 FT | 11 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 16 PTS | -3Brandon Bass was aggressive, but he might have been the only Celtic who was getting those 50-50 balls. His hustle helped him get to the line for an 8-for-8 performance there. In addition, he got his third double-double this season. The Celtics do not typically get games like this from Bass, so it was frustrating to see the team waste it.
Paul Pierce, SF 35 MIN | 5-9 FG | 4-5 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 16 PTS | -3Since the injury to Rajon Rondo, the Celtics have relied on him to score a lot each game. However, he did not do so in the first three quarters. Pierce finally got into double-digits in the scoring column in the fourth quarter, but it was not enough. It will be tough for him to carry the scoring on the second night of the back-to-back on Saturday in Memphis, but no one will be surprised if he does. Fans have to hope that he will give them a chance to stop the three-game losing streak.
Kevin Garnett, C 29 MIN | 5-10 FG | 6-6 FT | 12 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 16 PTS | -3It is such a shame that the Celtics could not take advantage of such a great night from Kevin Garnett. He was very efficient from the field and grabbed 12 rebounds. It was his 736th career regular season double-double, the second-most in the NBA since 1990 (Tim Duncan: 760). The Big Ticket continues to defy age.
Avery Bradley, PG 31 MIN | 4-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | -3He had a strong defensive game, but his shooting was poor. Surprisingly, his field-goal percentage is much better on the road than at home this season, but Avery Bradley did not show that on Friday.
Courtney Lee, SG 27 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | -3He was a part of the team’s solid backcourt defense, but overall it was a quiet night for Lee. Then, his leg injury led to the dagger 3-pointer by O.J. Mayo late in the game.
Jeff Green, PF 30 MIN | 5-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 5 TO | 10 PTS | -3It is frustrating that Jeff Green is back to his tentative play. Foul trouble did not help his cause in this contest, and he turned the ball over. After setting the expectations high with his career-high in points on Monday, it has been the bad Green, making people once again scratch their heads when thinking about his contract.
Chris Wilcox, PF 16 MIN | 1-1 FG | 3-4 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 5 PTS | -3There were not too many Chris Wilcox sightings, but he was there for a bucket, some free throws and a few fouls. Although he has a low number of field goals attempts this season, he leads the league in true-shooting percentage.
Jordan Crawford, SG 16 MIN | 3-11 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 9 PTS | -3Well, Jordan Crawford’s play for most of the first three quarters was ugly. He missed his first four shots, but then had a few good passes that helped the Celtics cut the deficit heading into the final quarter. Crawford then scored all nine of points in the fourth quarter. Although he is not the most efficient player, he is going to be an asset for this team in the playoffs.
Jason Terry, SG 22 MIN | 3-9 FG | 2-2 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 8 PTS | -3Jason Terry’s homecoming was not too great. Even with Terry on the floor, Jordon Crawford supplanted him as the fourth-quarter shooter for the Celtics. In addition, Terry’s road woes continued.
Doc RiversWith the poor effort from most of the Celtics in Friday’s contest, Doc Rivers had his hands tied. His bench played poorly with the exception of Jordan Crawford’s fourth-quarter shooting and a few possessions from Chris Wilcox.
  • hydrofluoric

    Let's not place all of the blame on Jeff's being 'passive.' Good things happen when he attacks the basket… sometimes.

    Because of his limited arsenal/IQ, once you figure out how to guard Jeff, he gets neutralized a lot. He missed his last two opportunities against Miami not because they got luck or anything, but because they're smart, and after seeing 43 points, they were able to figure out how to stop him.

    The same happened tonight. Rick Carlisle and Shawn Marion are too smart to let Jeff explode against them. I counted at least two drives where Jeff was trying his best to drive and take it in, and at least one opponent got a clean hand on the ball.

    Hard to pan him for offensive effort here. If only he had any other way to make up for it when he can't get that going though. 3 rebounds and 5 TOs… yikes.

    • The Cardinal

      Teams are clogging the lane against the Celtics and when we miss so many opportunities at the rim, we seem to get frustrated and back off. This leads to poor offensive rhythm and nothing but outside shots and the thing snowballs unless we are having an exceptional shooting game.

      I stated this before, but lately teams are playing a sort of hybrid 1-2-2/3-2 zone against us, and we just don't consistently do the things that can bust a zone like penetrate into the collapsing defense and make passes to a back cutter, or penetrate and make the pick and pop pass. However, when we do one of these things, we either can't finish at the rim or get butter fingers and lose the ball to the opponent. Sheesh…

      If this offensive funk continues, I actually see Jordan Crawford being inserted into the starting line-up because hit or miss, he stays aggressive and the C's need someone as a third option behind PP and KG who isn't afraid to take a shot or try to make something happen (which is why I believe the Barbosa injury was more damaging to the team than losing Rondo and Sully). Crawford's a better passer than Lee or Bradley, and his one-on-one defense has been good enough that you can bring Courtney Lee off the bench to play beside Jet, which I think is a much better pairing for Jet.

      I also see a time when the Jeff Green as PF pairing with Bass will end, and Doc will use Green strictly as a SF and bite the bullet to use Wilcox more with Bass and KG, or start playing or Shavlik or DJ more.

      Basically, the team is going to have to redefine itself for about the 4th time this season going into the home stretch, and I think Doc may be more willing to tweak the rotation than in the past, but we'll see.

  • Sophomore

    Seems like Jason Terry has been in a pretty deep slump for a while now.

  • KillerGymRat

    I think it's safe to say the honeymoon with the spread is over, and now we can see this current squad more accurately and its strengths and weaknesses.

    The obvious strength is the defense, and more specifically the perimeter D and on-the-ball pressure.

    The obvious weakness is rebounding (the real reason Dallas controlled last nights game), rim protection, and offensive consistency.

    The only good thing about this latest slide (0-3 in last 3 games and 2-5 in last 7) is that at-least nobody can blame Rondo for it.

    I think this team still has a lot of potential, but the glaring flaw in the design is that it lives and dies by the mid-range jumper. There were a lot of good looks last night (and in the 5 losses) but they just weren't falling. When they drop, despite the rebounding and rim protection, we can beat anyone. When they aren't dropping the other two flaws stand out and leave us with little to claw our way back in. We also lack the ability to get to the line consistently, though I see that as less of a flaw of the roster and more of a reflection of the offense we run and the overall mentality of taking the pull-up jumper.

    At this point in the season and with the roster set, I don't see it changing much. Which means we can expect grind-out 7 game series in the playoffs where we shine at home (thanks to better shooting and those mid-range shots dropping) and we get pummeled on the road. Then it will come down to our experience and handling the pressure which will hopefully allow us to out execute the other team in that crucial game seven. Since we are without a dominant rebounder, an inside scoring threat other than KG, any deadeye 3 point shooters, or players who can get to the line at will (sadly PP gets just as many no-calls as calls these days), we live and die by the mid-range jumper.

    The honeymoon is over, but I still love this team so I'll be cheering those shots drop.

    • High Rollers

      As for getting pummeled on the road, that one shining moment in Indy could turn out to be the best of the regular season and just the sort of mental hat rack for the C's going into the playoffs. It's like they forgot it already. Getting the W tonight with sparkling D would be a nice little reminder and an increasingly necessary pick-me-up.

      • KillerGymRat

        I have to agree with you on the Indy game. It's my fave win of the season because of the way the team executed down the stretch and how it was really about team execution…not just PP making an amazing play with everybody standing around.

        I had really hoped to see much more of that kind of execution in subsequent games.

        I really hope they get up for the game tonight. If they brought the energy against every team the way they did against Miami the other night we'd run most squads out of any building.

        Fingers crossed for the second season that we can start putting it all together.

  • High Rollers

    There are just going to be some moments and some games where the C's have to remember that they're missing their most creative young player (Rondo) and their best rebounder (Sullinger). That honest perspective is a hard one because it won't take away the frustration of failing to execute and losing winnable games. But it's a good reminder of where the extra effort needs to be focused, as they proved so well immediately after those injuries. They're probably getting a little mentally fatigued by the gap between expectations, aspirations, and all the significant chess pieces (with their arsenal of abilities) lost to injury. But that in itself should be motivation to crank it up once more. Those irritating reminders should be more than enough fuel for this prideful bunch.

    A win tonight in Memphis is surely possible if the C's play the right way.

  • Jim

    Jason Terry has been an absolute disaster. He can't score which is why we got him and he plays poor defense.. He also needs to shut his mouth because his play does not back him up. I see why Mark Cuban let him go. I would rather .see us give time to some of the new guys rather then watch Terry clang iron.