After every game, we'll take stock of how each individual performance affects the player's overall value.
Paul Pierce: The best Paul Pierce has looked so far. Could this actually be a sign that his struggles have been more conditioning and less age? I've always thought that was the case with Pierce, so I'm taking last night as a positive sign.
Ray Allen: Ray will have some lulls. His shooting is off right now, and with the focus more heavily on other guys getting going, Ray may have to take a back seat here and there. I'd love to see more than 7 shot attempts, but gettin 24 for KG and Pierce combined is kind of what we need right now.
Jermaine O'Neal: 11 rebounds a block and a steal. Not bad. 12 points? Also not bad. 5-11 shooting along with 2 of your shots getting blocked (according to Hoopdata), not so great. If you're going to go into the game saying "judge me on my defense," Then don't take 11 shots.
Mickael Pietrus: When his shooting touch is on, he's going to be a big help. And he actually too a few shots that weren't 3's! He was huge last night. Now let's see if we can get a little more consistency out of him..
Marquis Daniels: Welcome back to the line up, Quis. 2-3 shooting and 6 rebounds in 12 minutes? I'll take it. And he had one really nice, aggressive take that made me think, or maybe hope, that Quis could be starting to turn it around.
Oh, what the hell… I'll break out the green glasses for this one… partly because I'm sick of not doing so for all this time. Paul Pierce took a step in the right direction, Pietrus looked good, and the Celtics played the best team in the NBA pretty well until OKC made some ridiculous 3's down the stretch.
Normally, I'd say there are no moral victories here, but the Celtics are in need of something to hold on to right now. I saw positive things in that game, so I'm going to say this might be where the C's start to turn things around. A lighter upcoming schedule doesn't hurt, either.