Recap: Jermaine O’Neal leads Cs over Pistons (I’m not kidding) | Red's Army - The Voice of Boston Celtics Fans
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Recap: Jermaine O’Neal leads Cs over Pistons (I’m not kidding)

Jermaine O'Neal awoke from his three game slumber and led the Celtics to a 96-85 victory over the Detroit Pistons.

O'Neal scored 19 points on 7-9 shooting. He added 7 rebounds. He was a +25. All team highs on the night. 

Paul Pierce debuted with 12 points, 5 assists in 23 minutes. He appeared very limber. I noticed no signs of the heel injury. As expected, the Truth had a calming influence on the Celtics. 

Brandon Bass (17 points, 7-11 FG) was spectacular. When he's not draining jumpers, he's attacking the rim with controlled athleticism. He's the anti-Glen Davis.  

It wasn't all roses. Kevin Garnett was a non-factor, yet again. 8 points, 3 rebounds in 25 minutes. Garnett made two plays that disturbed me. In the 1st quarter, when he appeared to have a semi-open lane, KG dished to JO instead of attacking the rim. In the 3rd quarter, while on the run, KG took a lob pass in the lane. Rather than attack the rim (again), he delivered a shaky bounce pass to Pierce, who bailed him out by nailing a 3-pointer. I realize he's always been unselfish, but I'm starting to wonder if he's losing confidence in his ability.

Greg Monroe (who?) torched the Celtics interior defense for 22 points on 9-12 shooting. 

Box score | Recap

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  • Kevin was better on defense, however.

  • Sad what’s happening to KG. When a proud lion grows old, it’s a painful thing to watch. Im praying for 1 more max out playoffs for him.

  • KG looked much better on defense, and I’m not buying that his offensive-game is “done.” KG takes a while to get going, and I’m holding-off. If he still is in this funk come end of January, then I’ll be worried about him. I really think it won’t be until beginning of Feb. that this team will be really cohesive as a unit and in game-shape.

  • Well welcome back Captain Pierce! i mean i always knew Pierce was important to this team… ALWAYS knew, but wow did he really make a difference tonight…
    i know it was just the Pistons, but our offense was so much more smoother, our defense was much more active, we looked a step faster than the previous three games… spectacular way to return Captain Pierce…
    I am still a strong believer in acquiring a BIG man… preferably athletic & at lease 7ft… i would offer Avery Bradley to the highest bidder… Avery Bradley & maybe, just maybe a pick, depending on the BIG, but we are so vulnerable in the middle, & alot of that has to do with JO, & KG being so old…
    still looking to me like KG is a little pass his time, but i’ll hold on that thought, he had a pretty good defensive game tonight.
    & JO, words can’t describe how i felt the whole game tonight, couldn’t believe him of all people was dominating that way.
    I have a bone to pick with Rondo, can someone please tell him to stop all that gambling on defense?
    also i see no reason, as long as we stay healthy that we shouldn’t have the 2nd or 3rd seed come playoffs.
    Nevertheless, it always feels good to win, 62 more to go… Lets go Celtics!

  • I think we may already have that seven-footer in the Steamer.

  • Some home cookin tonite -and 2 games against another lottery team coming up against the Bulletts -might help take the taste of the N’orleans game away.
    I’m glad Quisy has some strength back in his hands and everything but he needs to stick to the slashing game he’s so good at. Funny how we all called for Jermaine’s head the other day and he actually has a decent game. Maybe we should stay on him?

  • I just wish Doc would have given some of the younger guys more burn when we were up 20 with about 9 minutes left; i maybe would have put avery in instead of Pavs or Quis and try to get something going for him, or JJ in with JO or KG to get him some burn…But that’s just me. Still the only complaint Ive had and will continue to have with Doc, just not his style

  • There was a quote from Doc the first week of training camp talking about how missing practice affects KG more so than it does Pierce; I’m hoping that he’s just taking longer than usual to get settled in this season due to having no training camp or preseason to speak of
    In that quote he also called him a system player, I think KG’s defense has been affected by the fact that the whole team hasn’t really been in sync, so he is having trouble getting a feel for where guys are, and where the offense is attacking from; having Pierce out there gave him a little more familiarity and in my opinion helped him (and the whole defense) out bigtime

  • I was the only person out of the first 25 to take the poll that voted for JO to still be our starting center. This is the JO that was the so called MVP of training camp. I only wish he had the intensity of a Kendrick Perkins. Perhaps that is what people really miss the most about Perk; his scowl and his passion for the battle. I swear I think JO & Quis share a doobie before some of the games. KG should slap JO a few times a game just to wake him up. Quis did not once get the ball anywhere near his sweet spot of 15 feet and closer to the basket and on the move. KG has been shying away from contact for a long, long time now; since before he came here at least. It could be a key to his longevity. He plays best when he is allowed to do whatever he feels he can do to help win. Asking him to score more just seems to bring down his offensive efficiency.
    Why doesn’t Ray Allen endorse any products? I want to take whatever he does to keep playing the way he does for so long….

  • Well-said. Makes me just shake my head at these folks screaming “TRADE KG…TRADE RAY..TRADE (insert name here).” It’s December, these guys were pretty-much hanging around since May and it’s gonna take some time..especially for the older fellas.

  • He endorses Air Jordan..but that’s about it..

  • If he signs with us for the vet minimum next year, I’d bet he’ll have a few more…

  • we still need one more in addition to that in my opinion, you think?

  • KG is definitely not what he was even last year. This does not mean he won’t get there later, but he’s clearly not there now.
    – His vaunted defense has been reduced to near-impotence. Guys like Greg Monroe are shooting AT WILL with KG right in front of them, or they’re driving right by him……. like he’s not there. Yes, he still talks a lot on D, and that’s great…. but the problem is that he’s not performing. He’s slow, a step or three late on his rotations, and generally looks feeble.
    – On O, he’s refusing to finish at the rim unless it’s a wide-open dunk. Like he’s scared.
    – He’s also not fighting for rebounds at all, just tipping when possible.
    Perhaps most telling of all is KG’s body language. Except for a very brief appearance in game 1, his on-court ferocity is gone. He walks with his head either hung low or off to the side. That body language is saying: “I think I’m too old for this. Wish I could retire right now.”
    So, what does this all mean? It means KG could still make a comeback for one last push to the mountaintop. Or it could be that he plans to retire after this season, he sees the end too clearly, and his fire is extinguished.
    The evidence so far points to the (very) sad latter narrative. But it’s not certain yet…. there is still hope.