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.
In Tuesday's outing, the Heat took 36 free throws to the Celtics' 22. The Heinsohnian theory — blame the refs! — won't hold here. It's all about aggressiveness and athleticism. In two games, Miami has outscored Boston 53-31 from the line. Think about it: That's a 22-point swing.
Garnett, meanwhile, did not attempt a single free throw in Tuesday's game. For those of you scoring at home, that matches his free-throw attempts from Game1.
There are equally disturbing numbers on the defensive end. Tuesday's Heat win included a 9-2 edge in blocked shots. The two-game tally: 17-5 in Miami's favor. The hustle points are overwhelming in the Heat's favor.
Doesn't that photo sum up the first two games?
Yes, the referees have been far from perfect. As I stated in last night's recap, I felt a couple of non-calls on the Glen Davis helped fuel Miami's end of game run.
But ZERO free throw attempts in two games for KG? That's absurd. No sensible human being can blame that all on the officials.
It's painful to watch the Celtics attempt to finish at the rim. Are they trying to avoid contact? It sure seems that way.
We can only hope that a jolt from the home crowd will help reverse this horrifying trend.
On Page 2, Pierce has a strained Achilles. Yup, I said Achilles.
"I'm day-to-day right now," Pierce said. "We're just going to see how it feels the next couple of days. When you strain your Achilles, every step is like a slight, little pain in there. But it actually loosened up when I got back in there, got up and down a few times, and it really didn't affect me the rest of the game."
Rondo wore a wrap around his lower back before the game and during intermission to keep his back from tightening up. He said after Tuesday's loss that he was fine, and even though Rivers told the media that Rondo asked to come out because of the back early in the fourth quarter, Rondo said it was due to fatigue. He did get some assistance while being stretched out on the baseline during the break.
"No, I was tired at the time," Rondo said. Asked about the wrap he noted, "I was just trying to stay warm."
Despite Paul's downplaying of the injury, I'm worried. Pierce cannot afford to lose even 1/8 of a step when covering Lebron.
I'm more concerned about Rondo's attitude than his lower back. He can't be bickering with teammates on the court and walking away from huddles while Doc is coaching. It's bush-league, rookie bull-shit.
The rest of the links:
ESPN Boston – Rapid Reaction: Heat 102 Cs 91 | Globe – Heat are clamping down on Celtics | James, Wade using all tools in their kit | Pierce, Allen need to fire it up | Bosh steps up his offense | Celtics are getting stopped in late going of quarters | Herald – Get up off the floor now | It's two bad for Celtics | Cs not following road to success | CSNNE – GameStory: Celtics torched in Game 2 | Heat withers Celtics at end | Yahoo! – Heat threaten to shut Celtics window | WEEI - Do Celtics have enough left?