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How we see it goin’ down: C’s – Hornets

Tip: 8:00pm    Court: New Orleans Arena   Watch it:  CSN    Hear it:  WEEI

Refs: Marc Davis, Courtney Kirkland, Tom Washington

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 The Matchup

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Record: 48-19 (1st Atlantic, 2nd East) Record:  40-30 (3rd Southwest, 7th West)
On the Road: 19-13 At Home: 24-10
Streak: Lost 1 Streak: Won 1
Leaders Leaders
Buckets: Pierce (18.6 ppg) Buckets: David West (18.5 ppg)
Boards: KG (9.0 rpg) Boards:  Emeka Okafor (9.7 rpg)
Dimes: Rondo (11.6 apg) Dimes: Chris Paul (9.7)
For the Stat Geeks  For the Stat Geeks
Offensive Rating: 106.7 (17th NBA) Offensive Rating: 105.7 (21st NBA)
Defensive Rating: 99.9 (2nd NBA) Defensive Rating: 103.7 (6th NBA)
Pace: 90.7 (21st NBA) Pace: 89.0 (28th NBA)

Last Time

Playing without Rondo, KG, Delonte or Perk, the C's dropped an 83-81 game to the Hornets in the Garden.  Glen Davis had a particularly bad game, shooting 4-14, taking a horribly ill-advised 3 (are any Baby 3's advised?) late in the game, and drawing the ire of Doc Rivers after the game.

This Time

Get it to:  Ray Allen

Just looking at the matchups, Marco Belinelli seems to be the guy the C's can pick on.  The Celtics need to get back to their offense.  Let Ray run off two or three screens and get the ball in a decent spot for him to do something.  The Celtics offense has been horrific lately.  It's time to get back to their roots, run some good clean sets, and let Ray get hot.

Gotta stop: Chris Paul

Opposing point guards are killing us.  And this guy is a pretty good point guard.  If the C's can't stop Kyle Lowry, I'm not feeling great about their chances of "stopping" Chris Paul.  But if the C's can cut off passing lanes and force Paul to be a shooter more than passer… then that's a step in the right direction.  I'd rather see him score 30 with 6 assists than 18 with 15 assists.  Keep the other guys on the team cold.  New Orleans is a slow team that doesn't score a lot.  If Paul is taking all the shots, then the other guys like David West and Carl Landry will start standing around and watching. 

Wild Card:  Rajon Rondo

This has become the "blatantly obvious" preview… but when your team is playing as terribly as the Celtics are right now, they need to do blatantly obvious things to get back on track.  There's no fooling around with nuance here.  Rajon Rondo makes this team go… and we all know what the running theme has been for him lately. If Rondo can rise up to the challenge of playing Chris Paul, disrupt him and play like Rondo, this game will be a 180 from what we saw last night.  If Rondo continues to struggle… well….

How we see it goin' down:

I'd love to summon up some optimism, but I can't.  The Celtics look terrible.  And now they're playing in a back-to-back, and they've been absolutely horrendous in this situation.  

I wish I could say an embarrassed C's team will come out and dominate and mean it.  But in addition to other factors, the C's are not that good on the road, and New Orleans is really good at home.  You've got two slow, defensive teams that don't score much, so don't expect a pretty game here.  And with the C's in a back-to-back situation… expect a lot of turnovers. 

This one has the potential to be a real stomach-churner.  An ugly, low-scoring game with low field goal percentages and a bunch of turnovers.  And considering the C's track record in these games, I'm marking them down for an 85-80 loss.

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  • I really don’t want to pessimistic but Celtics are definitely losing this game.
    The C’s aren’t as good on the road anymore and this is a back-to-back game versus a team that plays well at home. Forget about it.
    Rondo needs to have a triple double to even help us win this one, but I doubt he will even get a double double this game due to his shitty slump of crappy proportions.

  • I still haven’t figured out if the C’s will win or loose this game, but a huge step toward a win is a good game from Rondo, he dont neccesarily have to score, but he has got to set the floor, and pace nicely today, he’s got to dictate what goes on today, our problems have been offensively lately, averaging a 44% field goal efficiency, and guess why? Rondo’s been off, there’s some teams you can get by with Rondo playing poorly, this is not one of those meetings, our defense has been holding teams to an average 86 points in the past 5 games, I dont suspect that changes today, besides last night, our defense has been holding pretty steady, but our offense has got to get crisp today… I say this game go down the wire no matter who wins, Im prepared for a Celtic loss, but hoping for a Celtic win, I am a true fan and I will never go against my team, so I say C’s win by less than 9 points… #TeamCeltics