I often wonder what opposing teams, their beat reporters and bloggers
are saying about the Celtics after playing the Celtics. Here's a dose
of 'enemy chatter' from Sacramento.
They took on a physical, bullying team and stood
toe-to-toe with them for much of the night. The Kings blocked 11 shots
and only turned the ball over once in the final period. That’s not a
common occurrence for this team. 10 of the blocks came from the
barbershop quartet of Jason Thompson (four blocks), Spencer Hawes (two
blocks), Omri Casspi (two blocks) and Sean May (two blocks).
And they were significant blocks. Kevin Garnett was getting tossed
around inside. Kendrick Perkins couldn’t put the ball up softly or he’d
have it shoved back onto his forehead. Paul Pierce and Glen Davis had
their stuff thrown about like the Kings were ransacking the key. It was
an active defensive effort for three quarters (wasn’t quite there in
the first quarter) that I don’t think we’ve seen this season.
We all know KG is a shell of himself, but to watch him struggle with the Kings big men last night was especially painful.
So Martin, kneeling and waiting to enter, decided to return to the
bench. By the time it was over, the player once deemed such a core
piece of the organization's future had played 15 seconds of the final
With the trade deadline approaching Thursday, it
certainly raised a curious question about his status within the
organization. While sources continue to report that the Kings aren't
motivated to trade him, the task of actually utilizing him and
receiving consistent production remains a challenging one. He finished
with 11 points, four rebounds and four assists.
There was irony in the opponent, as Boston has legitimate interest in Martin as the sort of young scorer who could take over for Ray Allen. That proposal was rebuffed by the Kings, however, and all indications are that Martin will remain in Sacramento for the foreseeable future.
Granted it was one game, but I didn't see anything last night from Martin that made me think he could fill Ray's shoes on this team.