After every game, we’ll take stock of how each individual performance affects the player’s overall value.
The man had a great game… it’s that simple. There’s some debate over the validity of some of the 20 assists he had, but that doesn’t change the fact that a majority of them were very pretty passes that got guys comfortable looks. He only took 4 shots, and the only one he missed was a 3 at the end of the 3rd quarter buzzer. He continues to look comfortable from mid-range, too, burying a clutch jumper in the third from 22 feet out after the Raptors had cut the lead down to 2.
He only played 17 minutes, which is great, especially with a game tonight. KG drilled 6 of the 7 shots he took and grabbed 5 boards. Let’s put it this way: Everyone besides Leandro Barbosa played more minutes than he did. Only 2 guys had more points, and only 2 had more rebounds.
Pierce had a decent game, though he did try to murder Jonas Valanciunas. He was 4-5 at the rim, but just 2-10 everywhere else on the floor, so he’s still struggling a little to find his touch. His field goal percentage is at its lowest point in 9 years right now, and he’s only made 17 of the 51 shots he’s taken between 10 and 23 feet. You can be Paul Pierce and only be a 33.3% mid-range shooter.
More ‘meh’ from Bass, who just a few games ago had a game I wanted to bottle up for posterity. That’s not to say he was awful. He was ok. He shot 3-7, he grabbed a few rebounds, and he had 2 blocks and 2 assists. That’s all nice. He got into foul trouble, so that hurt his overall performance.
JET was flying yesterday. Six of Rondo’s dime went to Jason Terry, who shot a mere 70% from the field (4-7 from 3). In fact, Terry didn’t get within 10 feet of the rim on any of his shots, so this was just a jump shooting barrage that couldn’t be stopped, even when he had hands in his face. There will be a direct correlation between Terry’s great shooting nights and Rajon Rondo’s mega-assist nights.
Kevin Garnett pulled Green aside and was talking to him throughout a timeout last in the blowout. They weren’t talking about dinner plans, either. This was KG in Green’s ear about continuing to play the right way.
It’s tough to preach patience out there with Green because we see the flashes and we want more.
He and Rondo are good for at least two alley oops a game now. They had 3 last night. The chemistry between these guys is amazing now. This picture says so much about how comfortable these guys are with one another. Even through that mess of bodies and Rondo being cornered, this play ended with an alley oop. Wilcox knows if he’s got a lane to the rim, and Rondo has the ball in his hands, the ball will find its way to him.
He managed 3 steals in the game, but he turned it right back over after one, and had a dunk attempt blocked after another. Some nice defensive work taking advantage of a very sloppy Raptors team, but overall, nothing really stood out with Lee’s performance.
Just 15 minutes for Barbosa, who did hit 3 of 6 shots while dishing 3 assists.
His first career double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds. You can play pick-and-pop with Sullinger, as evidence by his 3-4 shooting from 16-23 feet. That spot right around the top of the key has been pretty automatic for him going back into the preseason. 4 of his rebounds came off the offensive glass, which is just something you don’t see a lot of around here.
Sullinger is good… good enough to take advantage of opportunities against weak teams like Toronto. It won’t be too long before he’s very good, and doing it against most teams. His play down stretch yesterday was a huge reason why KG could stay seated on the bench… except when he got up to watch Gino time on the jumbo-tron.
He was able to keep Pierce and KG rested, which is huge. He called a great time out in the 4th quarter after the Celtics 2nd unit went almost 3 full minutes without making a field goal, and the Raptors scored 5 points in less than 30 seconds. The Celtics settled down and scored four baskets over the next few minutes to at least keep the Raptors at bay… until a killer 11-0 run that began at the 4:15 mark.
Doc might have been on the verge of re-inserting Kevin Garnett, but instead he got his bench to snap out their scoring funk.
The Celtics started and finished great, sandwiching some nice basketball around a crappy 2nd quarter and a half-crappy 3rd quarter. This was an 18 point win that was just 2 points halfway through the third. But in the end, Gino danced at the Garden… and there’s nothing but smiles (especially on KG’s face) when Gino dances.