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.
“It gets frustrating,’’ Allen said. “I’ve been a scorer my whole career, and scoring in many different ways, so I try not to lock into one way or the other how I am going to put the ball in the hole.
“But being able to create as well, creating opportunities for the other guys, I think this year more than any year I’ve noticed teams focusing heavier on me.’’
Allen was the Celtics’ leading scorer early in the season, but opponents clearly have been attempting to take him out of games.
“I’ve seen teams, it’s almost like a box-and-one, where the guy is not bumping anything, he’s committing himself to me and he’s not help defense at all,’’ Allen said. “And a lot of teams are saying, ‘We gotta take Ray out, keep him out of the game, and we stand a greater chance of keeping the offense in standstill situations.’
“So I do whatever I can to move the ball around and get to positions where I can create stuff for other people, but when we get in trouble, we don’t move the ball around. If I’m scoring, the ball is moving around quite a bit.’’
Rajon Rondo is the engine and Paul Pierce is Mr. Versatile, but Ray Allen has become the focus of opposing team's defensive schemes. It makes sense. Ray benefits the most when the team is making the extra pass. He's also the most explosive scorer on the Celtics. Look no further than last night's 3rd quarter. Ray was having another ho-hum night and then BAM! Three 3-pointers in 4 minutes and the Celtics were back in the game.
I'm not going to blame Ray. Just watch him w/o the ball. He's in constant motion.
What is the solution? We can all scream "better ball movement," but what does that mean?
Does KG need to pass more? No.
Rajon Rondo is taking more shots (about 7 more than his season average over the last 5 games), but as John pointed out yesterday, RR is doing a good job of not forcing shots.
That leaves Paul Pierce. He had a great stretch playing point forward in Rondo's absence. But his shooting has been hideous this season – 41%. It's worse in February – 37%. Pierce needs to be better and it might just draw attention off Ray and to him.
Ray Allen's monthly shooting percentage this season: 58% – 48% – 42%. It's worse the last 5 games – 36%. The Celtics need to solve this riddle quickly.
On Page 2, the blossoming love connection between Rajon Rondo and Chris Wilcox.
I can't get enough of these two.
I guess this is what it's like to be a Clippers "Lob city" fan. Did I really just type that?
The rest of the links:
Globe – C's can't hold it together | CSNNE – Blakely: Celtics can't rebound vs Bulls | Game recap | ESPN Boston – C's roller coaster crashes in Chicago | KG toughs it out vs Bulls | Rivers: It's a make/miss league | Rapid Reaction | Herald – Bulls bully Celtics | Great things must end |