After every game, we'll take stock of how each individual performance affects the player's overall value.
Rajon Rondo: His numbers looked ok in the box score and he certainly had some amazing moments in the game. But he got too passive down the stretch for my liking. I know the Lakers have trees back there in Bynum and Gasol. And I know that it's no fun flinging yourself into those trees time and time again. But that's what you get paid $10 million to do. Rondo needed to attack a lot more and get those guys into foul trouble or out of position so other guys could get to the rim.
Paul Pierce: Aside from the tough shooting night, Pierce missed Ray Allen who was open just long enough to get a good shot off in regulation, and then he missed a game winner in OT. He did rebound and pass well, but it was a tough ending.
He just couldn't hit a shot. 6-23? KG has been on lately, but he was decidedly off last night. And there's no way in hell KG should miss 4 of 8 shots at the rim. The 12 rebounds were nice, but a 13th at the end of the game somewhere would have been better.
Jermaine O'Neal: This is where the real blame lies in the rebounding mess. Andrew Bynum got 7 offensive rebounds. I will not judge you by your offense, Jermaine, but I will judge you by not keeping Bynum off the boards. I know he's bigger, faster and stronger… but you can find him and box him out. I would have been THRILLED if Jermaine got zero defensive rebounds, but his boxing out kept Bynum from getting 4 or 5 of his offensive boards. This, more than anything, cost Boston the game.
He hounded Kobe Bryant and played some pretty good defense on him down the stretch. He hit one clutch 3 to put the C's up 2 with 1:07 to play, he got himself open for a potential game winner at the end of regulation, and he got an offensive rebound to almost win the game in OT. Pau Gasol made a great heads up play to block what would very likely have been a game winner.
Chris Wilcox: Just 13 minutes for Wilcox and his only basket was a nice dunk. Other than that, meh.
Mickael Pietrus: This dude just LOVES to shoot 3. And he'll keep shooting them. He made one at a great time late in the game last night, but we needed more out of him.
Brandon Bass: Not a bad game out of Bass. I know Orlando fans will get a kick out of me saying this, but I still need to see him be more aggressive out there. He's a big boy, he can jump and finish at the rim, and he's not a complete oaf when he takes a dribble… attack the basket more big fella
Greg Stiemsma, E'Twaun Moore, Marquis Daniels, JaJuan Johnson: Moore got a little run for a few minutes but did nothing. Quis made a brief cameo too.
Doc Rivers: It might have been nice to see Wilcox in there to help with the rebounding. Also, I would have liked to see something more for the last shot in OT. I know that's Pierce's bread and butter, but maybe a play with some action before it to get a cleaner look would have been nice.
There were some good things in this game, and the guys did fight. But they were still not aggressive enough. I can't even argue the 20-5 free throw disparity because the Celtics settled for way too many jumpers. If they had just attacked the basket some more, they would have forced some calls. If that resulted in some blocked shots, so be it. The Celtics still had chances to win, but they really could have won this by 6 or 8 points had they taken it to the hole.