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Detroit Pistons 93 Final

Recap | Box Score

98 Boston Celtics
Chris Wilcox, PF 20 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | -6
Wilcox was consistently bullied and outplayed by both Greg Monroe and (rookie!) Andre Drummond…oh and Shavlik Randolph. To cap off this forgettable performance, Wilcox completely misplayed a defensive assignment leading to a wide open layup for Greg Monroe with just under 45 seconds left in the game. Unlike some of his Piston brethren, Monroe made the layup.
Brandon Bass, PF 37 MIN | 6-8 FG | 5-6 FT | 7 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 3 BLK | 4 TO | 17 PTS | +7
A really solid night for Bass against the much larger frontline of the Pistons. Instead of shrinking against competition, Bass used his quickness and new found versatility to his advantage by getting to spots for shots and finding his way to the free throw line.
Jeff Green, PF 43 MIN | 13-19 FG | 5-7 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 4 BLK | 3 TO | 34 PTS | +5
At the risk of sounding negative, Green looked like a superstar role player tonight. Believe me, I mean that to be complimentary. He didn’t take over the game or abuse his defender like the LeBrons, Durants, Bryants and Pierces of the league do when they have it going. He simply shot efficiently, both inside and out, and was aggressive regardless of the position he was playing or defending.

In a year where Green has had his fair share of highlights, he may have had the best defense-to-offense sequence of his career. Not known for his rebounding, Green out-jumped and out-muscled two Piston big men for a defensive rebound, ripped it away from them when they tried to steal it, and then outletted it for a fast break. The very next Celtic possession saw Jason Terry just miss a wide open three and Green streak down the middle of the lane (running end-to-end) to throw down the putback.
Paul Pierce, SF 33 MIN | 5-14 FG | 6-6 FT | 3 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 17 PTS | +8
Pierce sat for long periods of time, but the C’s gave up their huge lead which forced Pierce to play close to his normal minute-load. He shot under 50%, but whenever the Celtics needed a bucket, he seemed to hit an absurd turnaround over Rodney Stuckey.
Avery Bradley, PG 33 MIN | 5-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 11 PTS | 0
Bradley continued his good shooting streak by making 5-of-8. The real downer came when he was whistled for hitting a Piston’s elbow with his face and cleanly picking another Piston’s pocket. I think they were both Brandon Knight but I was blinded by rage.
Shavlik Randolph, PF 13 MIN | 1-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | +3
Has any other player had more of an impact on a game with only playing 13 minutes, snagging two boards, and scoring two points? Probably, but those are elite defensive players. THIS is Shavlik Randolph. More on him later…
Jordan Crawford, SG 12 MIN | 1-5 FG | 1-1 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 3 PTS | +6
Crawford is an enigma, and I really don’t tire of writing that. He passed up some open shots from swing passes and had two drives where he tried to go 1-on-3 (he was 1-and-1 on these attempts). In the same game, he made an amazing pocket pass to Jeff Green which continues to completely shake my previous understanding of what Jordan Crawford is. I like it…I think?
Courtney Lee, SG 13 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 0 PTS | -2
The Celtics got very little from Lee tonight. Very little.
Terrence Williams, SG 13 MIN | 1-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | +3
Williams was playing well enough to earn more playing time. His team defense is definitely a work-in-progress but his rebounding and overall versatility is just awesome.
Jason Terry, SG 22 MIN | 3-8 FG | 2-2 FT | 5 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 10 PTS | +1
Terry missed a lot of shots early on but was okay overall.
Doc Rivers
Doc Rivers turned a fantastic first half into a completely puzzling third quarter that left a pile of mush on the floor that was once, I assume, my brain. How do you put Chris Wilcox back in after playing him for much of the third quarter? How do you play your starters almost the entire third quarter? Seriously, my gone is brain. I’m just so person.
  • elroz

    Difficult to imagine Wilcox being here next year. Nothing against the guy..but maybe he would fit better in a different system with a different coach. I don't know.

    • Josh_5

      Now we know why Danny wanted this guy gone!!

  • elroz

    Green has been better and better with each month – look at his month by month stats on ESPN. However, it is a good characterization of him as somebody who – so far – has not consistently exploited his skills and advantage like Harden would, like Durant would, etc. I guess we all expect so much from him that it seems almost strange when he plays 33-35 minutes and does not score 22-25 points or so every night.

    Hey, it's better than it used to be, right?

  • geo

    what happened to highlight wilcox, who used to post, spin, look up take one step and flush a huge dunk with either hand. yes i know, heart surgery and age, but man he is the smallest looking 7 footer sometimes.

    can someone explain how DJ White has not seen a minute since charlotte?

    Doc, youve clinched a spot in the playoffs, work these guys in please cause everyone is necessary in the playoffs, especially if KG (knock on wood) isnt 100%

  • Kafel

    Seriously, 25 offensive rebounds? Why the hell White doesn't play when our frontcourt is getting destroyed on boards? And what's with Fab Melo? We could use him too, right now Wilcox isn't giving this team anything..

    Nice game from Bass, I hope that he is finally getting back on track to play like last year. Also great to see that Green is playing really efficient lately.

  • swissflix

    Wilcox should not play.
    Best game of Green so far, not just because of the 34 points but also because of how he scored them. He was totally in the flow of the game. I see the celtic's future the way Pierce and Green played together. Paul dishing and Green scoring!
    Pierce vs. Jerebko was actually a nice matchup. Jerebko played some smart basketball by constantly cutting to the basket without the ball. But boy, could we use Sully right now…

  • CG12

    This game was an emphatic confirmation of my recent decision that I am done with Wilcox. He is a terrible team defender. Just terrible. I would absolutely take Jason Collins over him in a heartbeat. I would also take Shavlik Randolph over Wilcox, and Shav happened to be sitting on the bench watching Wilcox get pushed around on the glass and be constantly out of position on defense. Wilcox has good straight line speed and can jump, but if he has any other positive attributes, they are lost on me.

  • CG12

    I am, regrettably, feeling fairly discouraged about the Celtics defense. They just aren't gelling. The one-on-one defense is very good, but the rotations just aren't there. You can see that they don't have the chemistry to read when and how much to help. You get an equal mix of guys over-helping when it isn't really necessary, often leading to a kick-out for an open 3, and guys not reading a play to know that they will need to dig down into the paint to help out.

    And this is likely just because I am a crusty bastard, but does anyone know how to use a genuine defensive stance these days? It blows my mind the number of times I see players just kind of standing up, looking around, not even trying to be locked in on the defensive play. The little things, like how much to hedge and getting your hands up when recovering after a hedge, seem to be totally lost on many of these players. There are a lot of basic things about playing good defense that you just don't see very much of. Blows my mind.

    • GymRat

      I agree on the defensive rotations not being there….but you do have to wonder how much of that is a result of all the new faces, KG (the quarterback of our D) not playing, and that most of the signings were for offensive purposes.

      JC, Shavlik, and T-Will are all getting minutes now and inserting just one new (to a system) person can disrupt the crispness of a D since all it takes is one late rotation, or misstep to throw the whole thing off.

      But when you have 3 new guys sharing the floor at the same time, 2 of which have not (to my knowlege) ever played D at the level the C's demand it…well it's a work in progress to say the least.

      Come playoff time, assuming KG is back and healthy, I expect the rotation to shorten considerably, and the D should improve dramatically with AB, Lee, PP, and KG getting the majority of the minutes.

      It is tough to see the team is still finding itself with less than 2 weeks left in the regular season, but with all the injuries and roster changes…it's really a success for this team just to be solidly in the playoffs at all.

      • CG12

        I'm sure you are right that the presence of a number of new players not known for their defense and KG's absence have a great deal to do with it. But it is still distressing to watch. We have seen that guys who look like they may be the 10th or 11th guy can become a regular rotation player in the blink of an eye. And some of my biggest concerns are with guys who are slotted to be regular rotation guys even when KG comes back (Bass & Wilcox). Crawford's team defense is pretty bad, too, and he currently looks like the 4th guard, presumably ahead of TWill.

        I am optimistic that KG's return will catalyze a return to that tough C's defense that has characterized the team in recent years, but right now that seems a long ways away.

        • GymRat

          It definitely seems a long ways away. And as optimistic as I am, I expect some rather ugly defeats in the playoffs. Bass will for sure stay in the rotation, but save for special circumstances like fouls or injuries I expect Wilcox to fall out and doubt T-Will and even JC will get heavy minutes.

          I expect PP to play closer to 40 minutes, with KG around 36 minutes come post season, and I expect that Doc will lean heavy on Green for 40 minutes. Bass will likely get 20 – 30 minutes. The back court will be a tight rotation of AB, Lee, Jet and JC will likely be reduced to 15 – 20 minutes (at most).

          So in the front court you'll have Shavlik (hopefully) coming in for 10 – 12 minutes to spell KG. Green's 40 minutes will be the 8 pierce isn't on the court plus the 18 – 28 Bass is out, and the rest will likely come from some form of small-ball with Green and Pierce on the floor together with either KG or Shavlik, or even Bass, Green and Pierce.

          I would be surprised to see Wilcox get run. And shocked if the run he gets is more then 2 – 4 minutes. JC might get a bit more run than I mentioned, but I wouldn't be surprised to see him reduced to 10 – 15 minutes or less.

          Doc knows the postseason is all about D, and with this likely being the last run of PP and KG together, I expect them to be on the court as much as possible. If it looks like we're at risk of losing a series don't be surprised to see them both play 40 plus minutes.

          I guess my point is Wilcox and the days of sloppy D are numbered and you can expect more of the tight 8 – 9 man rotation that got us to the eastern conference finals.

          IMO the lineup that we will see the most of is AB, Lee, Pierce, Green, and KG. You get the offensive firepower to stretch the floor and attack the rim, plus solid rotation defense and lock-down perimeter D.

          • CG12

            I think your thoughts on playoffs minutes make a lot of sense. Crawford will see a few minutes every game, with potential for more minutes where the team needs a jolt of energy. Doc loves "wild card" guys who can come in and make a difference out of nowhere. If Green's recent play hasn't earned him 35-40 minutes a night, then nothing will. I would also prefer to see Randolph spell KG at C, with basically no Wilcox.

            The most interesting lineup issue to consider is the closing lineup. KG and PP, obviously. I think Green needs to play in crunch time, and will do so. JET was pretty much brought in to be a crunch time scorer, so I think he is going to finish games. My guess is that Avery and Bass will be the 5th guy, depending on matchups, and the CLee will see basically no crunch time minutes. That's pretty much it – you have those 7 core guys who will play the vast bulk of the minutes, with other guys getting minutes here and there.

  • Josh_5

    Brendan, Brendan, Brendan.

    "In a year where Green has had his fair share of highlights, he may have had the best defense-to-offense sequence of his career."

    Need I remind you of our home game vs the Lakers where Green had a transition flush immediately followed by him running the length of the floor and chasing down Jamison for the block?!?! (Which then led to Pierce nailing a heat-check 3 and Mike D'Antoni looking suicidal)

    • CelticsHubJacks

      That's offense to defense, not defense to offense. DUH!

      No, but seriously. I made sure I put defense to offense because it's so much harder unless you're leaking out on a perimeter close-out. Green snagged a tough rebound among trees- something that up until last night I really didn't think he was capable of- and then came in to clean up Jason Terry's miss. Just awesome!

  • Anthony

    It's nice to see Bass coming around and looking like the Bass from last season. Also great to see JGreen wanting the ball in late-game and late-shot clock situations.

    I don't know whether it's the Celts' poor interior defense but Greg Monroe is really good. I don't know how but DA needs to try to get him into a Celts uniform. Besides shot-blocking, the guy can do everything great. I would take him over DCousins, Hibbert, BLopez, etc.

    • Josh_5

      Monroe really had a coming out party last year and this year he's averaging 16-10. I really like him and agree that the C's should get him (though I don't see Detroit giving him up at all)

      • Anthony

        His rookie contract ends after next year so there's some hope.

  • GymRat

    I've typically been a big fan of Doc, but I have to say he has really been making some head scratching moves with playing time and the rotations. He played Green 24 straight minutes the other game, wiping him out for the second half, isn't giving White any run at all, and this game he keeps Shavlik on the bench for Wilcox running the starters into the ground in the 3rd, and we nearly lose the game when everyone is too tired to hold off Detroits run.

    If Detroit could make their wide open layups we would have lost the game.

    Here's hoping Doc gets it all together by the playoffs.

  • NZNICK33

    One thing I'm definitely liking about Jeff Green of late is that he is getting ornery out there on the court. No more deer in the headlights routine. Now he's looking to make an impact any which way he can.
    I'll take post All-Star break Jeff Green for $9M per season.

    • Anthony

      I just like the fact that he seems to demand the ball more in late game situations. Did you see how upset he was after committing the foul on Monroe? We've rarely that kind of emotions from him since he's been with the team. Also good to see that Pierce has no problem deferring to him. Keeps the opponent honest when you don't know who will get the ball late. Would be great if we can count JET in that group (KG, Pierce, JGreen) but that remains to be seen.

  • janos

    very good win for get a moemtums and hopes keep a rolling all through to play off beyond

  • GymRat

    Have to give credit to JC on his passing. He's by far the best passing guard we have (still suiting up). He made a gorgeous touch pass to get Bass an easy bucket, had another wrap around that lead to a foul, and he has an uncanny ability to snap a pass across the width of the floor (typically the worst pass ever) and hit a player in perfect position to shoot.

    It's an odd thing to say, but I'd actually like to see him shoot more. Kinda feels like he's changing his game to suit the team and becoming more of a passer, but we really need him to stay in his score-first mentality as the rest of the guards aren't really scaring any opposing defenses and helping spread the floor.

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