Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
According to Dwyane Wade, the Heat will open with Mike Bibby on Rondo, then Mario Chalmers and LeBron will get turns to give him different looks and fresh defenders.
But Wade will have his hands full, too, with Rondo’s backcourt mate. He said it will take a team approach to deal with Ray Allen because the Celts veteran guard runs through so many screens.
Spoelstra remains fairly amazed by the work of the 35-year-old Allen.
“His commitment to run,” the coach said when asked what impresses him. “He’s in fabulous shape. He’s one of the most highly conditioned professional athletes that I’ve seen. He’ll make you run with him, and if you do it for two or three quarters, can you continue to do it in the fourth?
Perrrr-fect.. (I say as I wring my hands with a sinister laugh).
Not only do I love the Rondo vs the cement-footed Bibby/Chalmers duo, but I love Wade on Ray.
The number don't lie. Ray averaged 20 ppg and 49% FG shooting vs the Heat this season. For all his defensive prowess, Wade has a hard time with old man Allen. Maybe Wade isn't one to fight through screens. Or his tendency to roam on defense bits him in the ass.
"You have to put them in as many pick-and-rolls, screen action plays as possible," another scout said. "Otherwise, they'll just keep on cheating over defensively."
Said another scout, "You look at most of the high-energy plays they make defensively. It's not what they do to the man they're guarding; it's what they do to the guy that didn't see them lurking."
Boston's ball movement will be instrumental in forcing both to play their men more tightly.
As for LeBron guarding Rondo, there is one clear-cut response: Paul Pierce in the post.
On Page 2, how Jeff Green fares guarding LeBron James.
So how has Green performed while guarding James during his career? It's a limited sampling — a mere 14 plays — but, according to ESPN Stats and Info, James is 3-of-12 shooting (25 percent) with seven points and two turnovers when defended by Green.
And some people had the balls to doubt Danny Ainge and the Trade. The Celtics PR people should have released these stats months ago.
In all seriousness, Jeff Green needs to play well defensively (rebounding too) vs Miami. Just forget about your offense, Jeff.
The rest of the links:
Globe – Heat on hot seat | Match-up is a happening | Bosh tunes it out | Ainge on target in Celtics ressurection | Bibby knows his role | Herald – 5 keys to Celtics/Heat series | On road, Celtics stay home | Bibby moves past poor first round | CSNNE – Key to victory hangs with Rondo | Bosh finds comfort zone | ESPN Boston – Pair of Threes | How big is game 1? | MWDN – Bosh could be X-factor |