The Pistons have been there before… this Celtics team hasn't. That's a simple statement of fact. So there are things that we, the fans and the players, can learn from them.
The lesson for the fans: Don't panic next time
The Celtics were never down in this series against the Hawks. Detroit was down 0-1 and 2-1… before whipping out 3 straight wins of 9, 17 and 23 points respectively. Of course…I say that as Detroit fans panicked… but they shouldn't have… and we shouldn't either. I think the 2 losses were good for this team because it knocked them back to reality.
The lesson for the team: Just do your thing
Detroit seems to coast at times… and nothing seems to phase them. They know that they've literally got 2 more months of this… so a little blip here and there is ok. Down a game? No problem. Lose the first game of the series? We'll get 'em next time. We're just going to keep playing ball and wearing you down. The good thing is that Doc and the crew got back to doing what they normally do in game 5 and it obviously worked out well.
So who cares about their crowd? You can still feed off them… you're just feeding off their boos and their silence. To paraphrase Curt Schilling… there's something very satisfying about making 17,000 people all shut up.
One thing is for sure… we should expect more of the same from Paul Pierce tonight. He's not only all business… the team is under direct orders to make sure he's a focal point.
"There was that one stretch where we went away from him and I was going to strangle Rajon (Rondo),” Doc Rivers said. “Paul had just made a couple of shots in a row, and Rajon came down and called a pick-and-roll. I thought I was going to kill him. And Rajon knew it. Then we got it right back to him.
“So not only does Paul have to be aggressive, we have to aggressively get the ball to him.”
That's a good step in Rajon's progression. Part of being the point man is knowing when to keep feeding your star… and stoking the flame when he gets hot. Speaking of Rajon… he's blogging again… back in the A
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