“These past two games, I think have
been teaching points for us. I can speak for myself as a starter,
[we’d] been blowing teams out, so in the fourth quarter we’ve been
sitting on the bench. So I think it’s good for us to go through these
fourth quarters where we’re down 6. We’ve got to have a sense of
urgency and go get games. But they just flat-out outplayed us.’’
agreed with Rivers when he said sometimes the Celtics beat themselves.
“Like not doing the things we were supposed to do, not sharing the ball
when we’re supposed to share the ball, guys knowing their roles,’’ he
said. But he added, “I think we’re still good, no reason to hold our
“We have a game plan, and we didn’t stick to it,” captain Paul Pierce said after the Indiana game. “I think we deviated from it a lot of times, especially defensively.
“We’ve got to be more consistent. We play well a few games, and then we start having lapses. But we’ll get it together.”
As I sat there a few nights ago, watching the time tick away and the Indiana Pacers celebrate a win over the Boston Celtics… I fumed. How COULD they? These are the Boston FREAKIN' Celtics.
So I did what I've criticized people for doing in the past… I loudly bitched about a meaningless November loss.
Yes, it was an ugly loss. The Celtics, if they put forth 100% effort every single night, should roll the Pacers. But the Celtics didn't put forth 100% effort. They half-assed it. They spent the third game in four nights keeping it in third or fourth gear. That's not only going to happen… maybe it SHOULD happen this year.
The Celtics, as has been drilled into our heads time and time again this year, are a little on the older side (yes, that's sarcasm). And when the playoffs roll around, we won't be seeing these three game in four night stretches. So who cares if, in mid-November, the C's take a couple of nights off?
I know that might sound like sports fan blasphemy. We live and die with each possession. But we're not the Pacers or the Hawks… young teams with something to prove when a team like Boston comes to town. We're like the marathon runner who will happily watch younger, more eager, and not-as-smart runners storm out to early leads while we sit in the middle of the pack. It's always within striking distance. And judging from the complete lack of concern in those quotes… the C's know exactly when to make their move.
All we've got to do is the impossible for some fans: look the other way every once in a while when the guys mail it in.
After the jump, Page 2, where the other Finals lock is struggling too
Photo courtesy Associated Press
"Defensively, we need to step it up," Andrew Bynum
said. "That's what we're lacking right now. We got guards trying to box
out bigs. Bigs trying to box out guards. We're all over the place right
The Lakers have three losses already, something that didn't happen last season until Dec. 9."Mortified," Kobe Bryant deadpanned. "We'll get better, we know what's at stake. We'll figure our way through this."
The Celtics and Lakers are matching each other right now… and both teams are struggling. Kobe has a groin strain… and Paul Pierce has a strained MCL (and not a bruised knee, apparently). The Lakers and Celtics have matching two-game slides during a point in the season where it just doesn't matter.
So take heart, C's fans. At least the Lakers trolls are being kept at bay by their own struggles. See… there's always a silver lining.
The rest of the links:
Globe: The stubborn, impatient, self-centered and absolutely essential Rajon Rondo | Worcester Telegram: Crying foul-why isn't Rondo on the line more? | Celtics Blog: Where have you gone Eddie House | FanHouse: Ron Artest plays keep-away with Ariza's shoe