I often wonder what opposing teams, their beat reporters and
are saying about the Celtics after playing the Celtics. Here's a dose
of 'enemy chatter' from Los Angeles.
Especially impressive to these eyes was Ron Artest – especially on
defense. Sure, Paul Pierce ended the night with 24 points on only 13
shots (making 12 of 13 from the FT line). But he never found a rhythm
on offense and never really threatened to change the tenor of the game
with his ability to score the ball. Ron just did an excellent job of
deny Pierce his sweet spots and making him work to even catch the ball.
But Ron was also solid on offense, going 5-10 from the field for 15
points and making 3 of his 5 three pointers.
Over the course of the evening the Lakers proved that they’re ready
for this match up. Ready to exorcise their green demons. Ready to
compete from the opening tip of the opening game and land the first
with decisive dribble-drive penetration. As a result, their looks at the
hoop were solid, and when those looks didn't fall, players were in good
position to recover the caroms. The Lakers tonight rebounded an awesome
36% of their own misses, leading to 16 second-chance points. Boston
looked almost nothing like the defensive menace that throttled both the Cleveland
Cavaliers and Orlando
The Lakers rebounded 36% of their own misses? That has to be some sort of league record, right?
On Page 2, the LA Times Bill Plaschke talks smack.
Shhh, it's OK, the coast is clear. You can come out now. Those bullies
in gold shorts and grimaces are gone. I promise.
Nobody is waiting to wrestle you back to the floor. Nobody is going to
bump you back into the marina. Those guys who tossed you around like
vacant headbands have the left the building.
It's OK, Celtics, you went into hiding early, but it's fine now, you can
come on out from underneath your frayed reputation and dented mystique,
it's only one game.
We'll have to tolerate garbage like this until the Celtics stop playing like children.