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Recap: Celtics pull the old rally-and-fade

Chuck - Red's Army February 16, 2012 Uncategorized 30 Comments

Boozerrondo

How many times have we seen the new Big 3-era Celtics fall behind early, claw their way back, only to fade in the 4th quarter? Tonight was one of those nights.

The 2nd quarter was horrendous. The Cs shot 3-for-15. They were outrebounded 19-3. A 7-point lead was transformed into a 9-point deficit. 

As the lead crept to 16, I contemplated writing a recap after the 3rd quarter and calling it a night. But once the thought entered my mind, the Celtics made a run. Credit Ray Allen (12 points, 4-13 FG) who made three 3s in the final 4 minutes of the quarter.

The Celtics pulled ahead (63-61) in the 4th, but that's when the fade began. Luol Deng (23 points, 6-9 3 FG, 10 assists) kept nailing three pointers and the Bulls picked apart the Cs zone defense.

Rajon Rondo (17 points, 7 rebounds, 8 assists) had two beautiful alley-oops to Chris Wilcox (9 points, 3 rebounds). Let's hope Dwight Howard sees some highlights.

Not sure how I feel about Rajon Rondo in the post. The play often takes too long to develop. Is he really comfortable there?

Another weak effort by Paul Pierce (14 points, 6-16 FG). What's wrong with the Truth?

TNT's Kevin Harlan referred to JaJuan Johnson as "Jackson" on multiple occassions. 

Box score

(AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

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  • KY Celts fan

    Where are all the haters? How was this Rondo’s fault tonight?

  • http://profile.typepad.com/andreas24x7 Andreas24x7

    I liked the way Rondo played tonight..not perfect but who really plays a perfect game…on offense.
    His defense on the other hand wasn’t good again..at times it was because of the zone in the 4th but earlier int he game he let watson and james get past him…pick and roll defense was horrible.
    Now i actually think Rondo in the post is a good strategy but last night and again tonight when they go it to it if he doesn’t make a quick move and score the offense completely dies..not really sure why..you would think players would move and he would find them..but it just doesn’t work out that way..maybe they need some practice time with it which they should get tomorrow or saturday before playing Detroit.

  • Alex

    I’m sorry but I just got to bring this up.
    You, sir, are an idiot.
    Try to comprehend why the “Haters” are hating on Rondo, then you can talk about it.
    Good game by Rondo but once again, the loss is pinned on Paul Pierce. Not sure where his spark disappeared to but man, let’s just say Larry Bird is a lot more consistent than this guy. His shots are becoming uglier and he just looks old out there. Not a good sight at all.
    The defense is decent but then it gets its horrible spurts of ugliness. The offense is STILL painful to watch… They really need to start banging in the post. You just can’t live and die by your jump shots. Pietrus also missed a couple open three pointers that he normally makes… seems like this guy is missing most of his three pointers as of late.
    Wilcox and Rondo is such a pleasure to watch! Great partners. I really do hope Howard sees this. If Howard was playing for the Celtics, those alley oops would be something he’d be getting constantly. I still believe the C’s won’t get Howard though, but hey, Ainge is a crazy scientist. He might pull it off!
    Right now, I’m going to be watching Paul Pierce. This guy is totally off in the past 2 games now.

  • Jerry Sondler

    Another game…another night of getting pummeled on the boards.
    Celtics are the “softest”, worst rebounding team in the NBA.

  • Ken

    Old man Pierce has no legs left.
    The Rondo for Lin trade needs to be discussed by Ainge.

  • TJames

    I’m blaming this one on Pierce… He really just looks lost out there. Rondo’s doing what he can running the show. Guys need to step it up.

  • Justin

    Pierce still has plenty in the tank.
    I second the Rajon Rondo for Jeremy Lin trade. Danny Ainge has to entertain it. Add Daniels & Wilcox.

  • Alex

    Uh, what…
    Rondo for Lin… you’ve got to be kidding me.

  • Bry

    Rondo needs to step up his scoring. 17 points won’t cut it. 25 or more needs to be the average.

  • Alex

    The rebounding is seriously hurting the C’s chances, BIG time. The Celtics need legitimate Centers that can rebound. If there is any way the C’s can get Gortat or some other Center at this point (while exchanging J.O as one of the pieces), I’ll take it.
    The Celtics aren’t going anywhere with the way they are rebounding.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mdsample greenbeand

    the road to lottery bound begins w/this grueling road trip. sadly this team is no longer feared. on a championship team ray, pp, and garnett w/be solid bench players. maybe resign on 1-2 yr short money deals.. it’s time to reload: batum, jennings, dhoward, nick young

  • http://profile.typepad.com/redsarmy Red’s Army

    How about we wait a few weeks, then circle back on this Rondo for Lin stuff? You don’t think you’re overblowing this just a liiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiitle bit?

  • http://profile.typepad.com/kwapt KWAPT

    I expect them to lose pretty-much every 2nd night of a back-to-back this year. It’s not in the tank anymore for the core guys. I try and stay optimistic, but facts are facts. Alot of extremists around here lately; it’s either the Rondo stalkers or the “trade Rondo for Lin” type. Not sure which are worse, but both are equally annoying. But none the less, they are Celtics fans, so I try and tolerate them. This season should pretty-much weed out the phonies and pink-jerseys at least thank God.

  • Jay

    Rondo is the only reason the Celtics didn’t lose by 25. If Doc had take him out in the 2nd half for rest, there would be no comeback. He created all the shots (not his fault when Paul & Ray heave bricks and then don’t get back on D).
    Rondo was the leader of that zone D they played, and he even picked-up the ballhandler 3/4 court, while defending, rebounding, running the floor, leading the break and driving to the rim.
    Anyone who feels Rondo does not belong in Celtic Green really does not understand the game and the VALUE of what he does >>> goes way past pure stats.
    JO should not be in the rotation. It’s clear Chris Wilcox is a willing rebounder, defender and passer. Likewise he wants to run the floor with Rondo. He also has no problem sprinting back up the court – even after a miss. JJJ is raw, but needs to be given the minutes to develop.
    It’s clear Pierce cannot play 35-40 minutes at a high end any longer. It shows up most on the defensive end when he refuses to rotate or stop the ball. Offensively, if he isn’t running the show or dictating tempo he just hangs out behind the arc. That’s ok for Ray because he can catch & shoot. Pierce should be cutting to the hoop and getting some movement into the half-court offense. Give Rondo options – and DOC SHOULD BE PREACHING THAT!
    Mgt is going to have $60Mil to spend next yr if they relinquish the right to KG, RAY, JO & Green (even though they will be unrestricted…. their Salary Cap holds still apply against the Celtics).
    Maybe try & sign them to reduced salaries (no JO), but use 1 MAX slot to get a REAL bigman who is young, hungry and wants to run with Rondo.
    This is a young man’s league.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/kwapt KWAPT

    1-800-HYPEBEAST.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/kwapt KWAPT

    Indeed it is..and the rest of this season’s schedule will not be kind to our old legs. Only 1 more team (GSW) has as many road games left as our 24 coming-up.

  • Elliot

    anyone who is saying trade Rondo for Lin is a complete and utter moron. you sir are a moron. However YES trade Pierce now, he’s gotta go.

  • Elliot

    Trade Pierce its gotta be done, Maybe Allen as well. As for people saying trade Rondo for Lin…. please shut up.

  • Elliot

    because Pierce is dropping money shots left right and center…………….

  • http://profile.typepad.com/licktheglassitol Classless

    I would trade anyone on this team for a legitimate rebounder. Their rebounding problems are exactly like the Patriots defense; it will haunt them all year.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mdsample greenbeand

    better move is trading u to the fakers fan club

  • Elliot

    nah you’re right lets stay sentimental keep Pierce and trade all the players on this team that actually putting in some effort and getting results.

  • Wels

    Other than the obvious lack of help on the boards and disappointing production from Pierce and Allen, what was up with the zone defense? It worked, what, maybe 5 minutes? And then we kept playing it, even though they started beating it consistently. What gives, Doc?

  • http://profile.typepad.com/jmeedu James Eisenman

    The zone defense killed us in the second half. But at least it camouflages Rondo’s continued God Awful defense. His defense has become such a joke, it’s hard to call it defense. It’s an insult to the word. He does nothing but troll for steals. But this game was lost with stagnant offense and that horrible zone which gave up 3′s AND allowed cuts through the middle. Uggh! Another forgettable, regrettable 80 point performance by a team that never seems to do anything put pass the ball around the perimeter and post up a 6-foot guard. Bad coahing Doc and bad execution team. And, by the way, the Knicks would NEVER trade Lin for Rondo. So, save your pipe dreams.

  • Rondo To KG

    Pierce has been off since the Charlotte game, and he wasn’t even that great in that game. If anything, he’s been off for about 10 games. Definitely hurting his case for best Celtic scorer, if there even was one to begin with.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/mdsample greenbeand

    your basketball IQ is somewhere next to 0

  • http://profile.typepad.com/pricehook44 Ainge still lives

    I would not trade Rondo or the Truth n as far as Rondo in the post I liked it rack up some fouls n make them adjust. The Bulls are to deep and played with a chip from there last lost to the Celtics. One of the big three needs to come off the bench. In Ainge I trust

  • Erin

    What this team needs now is a bench reliable enough to shoulder the offensive load when the starters fail to find any spark. This game should be a good example why. Glad to see Wilcox, JJ & Rondo running some kind of chemistry.
    MP may be a good 3pt shooter, but he’s no Ray. He can’t shoot off those passes that Ray catches. He needs to set his feet before he can hit the basket. Hope they will notice this and make adjustments.
    Call me a fool, but I’m still optimistic that this team can make it far. Remember that this is a shortened season with ZERO training camp, a whole bunch of new guys plus injured folks. Chemistry takes time to build. You think these guys don’t want a ring anymore than we do? Come on, son.

  • http://profile.typepad.com/bostonsportz BostonsportZ

    Wilcox needs to start over JO and when Bass returns, keep JO on bench, yes good D at times, but noooooo lift or quickness

  • Elliot

    oh shit someone rush me to the burn unit……