“It doesn’t matter. All of their big guys are playing physical and bumping,” Garnett said. “You go through side picks and it’s physical. I can’t tell one guy from the next. Spencer Hawes is being just as physical as the young kids. It’s all the same. They’re very aggressive.”
But tonight in Game 5, the Celtics can’t afford to have the generous Garnett — the one spreading the wealth — passing nearly as often. The Celtics are 1-3 this postseason when Garnett takes 12 shots or fewer, and 5-1 when he takes 13 or more.
Shots are just as important as touches, though according to coach Doc Rivers, an acceptable amount of offense is running through Garnett’s hands.
“His touches weren’t down,” Rivers said of Game 4. “He got a lot of the same touches. I thought in a lot of cases — we counted nine times where he was trying to be a passer instead of a scorer. So we have to get him back mentally thinking to attack.
Someone tell KG that Spencer Hawes is a young kid. He may move like he's 35, but he's only 24.
The formula for tonight's Game 5 isn't as simple as "get the ball to KG." The Celtics have to get him the ball at the right time:
"Every time they went on runs, we took a jump shot," said coach Doc Rivers.
But in the victories, Rivers added, "Any time we missed a couple shots, we went right back to the post."
The officiating is also key. Will the refs allow Philly to play rough with Garnett or will he actually get the star treatment we see handed to Lebron, Wade and Kobe?
Related link: ESPN Boston – C's want KG to be more aggressive
On Page 2, Avery Bradley is a game time decision.
Bradley did not participate in Sunday's afternoon workout and is officially a game-time decision for Monday's Game 5 of an Eastern Conference semifinal series (though the expectation is that he will likely play).
"It came out. It went right back in, which is crazy," Rivers said of the Game 4 dislocation. "It’s a tough thing, what he’s going through. A lot of players would not be playing."
Rivers said he dealt with painful shoulder dislocations, but nothing to the extent of what Bradley is battling. Bradley dealt with minor dislocations during the regular season and the shoulder would often pop back in whenever it slid out. During Game 3 against the Hawks, it didn't immediately go back in and he's worn a sleeve over his left shoulder to help alleviate discomfort. The team initially listed him with a sore left rotator cuff.
Bradley underwent treatment before Sunday's practice, but was held off the floor as the team went through half-court sets in a light workout. As has been the case for much of the postseason, it's still likely that Bradley, who carried on at the end of Game 4, will be available for Monday's Game 5.
I touched on this yesterday morning. Bradley can't keep playing like this.
The Celtics medical staff must find a way to stabilize the shoulder. Maybe this?
The rest of the links:
Herald – Celtics facing a must win | Celtics looking for another bounce back effort | Globe – Rivers unsure of defensive lineup | Celtics are focused | Increase in activity right move | Collins would prefer to give this type of talk a rest | WEEI – Caught off guard | ESPN Boston – C's reflect on Game 4 loss |
AP Photo/Alex Brandon