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How we see it goin’ down: Celtics vs Bulls

Chuck - Red's Army December 18, 2012 Gametime, Previews 11 Comments

Tip: 8PM     Court: United Center     Watch it: CSN     Hear it: WEEI

Referees:  Jason Phillips, Violet Palmer and Leon Wood 

Get your tickets here: Boston Celtics Tickets

The Matchup

Record: 12-11 Record: 13-10
On road: 4-7 At home: 7-6
Streak: Lost 2 Streak: Lost 1

Leaders Leaders
Buckets: Pierce (19.7 ppg) Buckets: Luol Deng (17.5 ppg)
Boards: Garnett (7.0 rpg) Boards: Joakim Noah (10.5 rpg)
Dimes: Rondo (12.8 apg) Dimes: Kirk Hinrich (5.5 apg)

For the Stat Geeks: For the Stat Geeks:
Offensive Rating: 103.2 (19th NBA) Offensive Rating: 102.3 (22nd NBA)
Defensive Rating: 103.7 (10th NBA) Defensive Rating: 100.0 (3rd NBA)
Pace: 92.3 (12th NBA) Pace: 90.0 (26th NBA)

Last time

The Celtics beat Chicago, 101-95, back on November 12. Rajon Rondo ripped the Bulls to shreds with a 20 point, 9 rebound, 10 assist performance.

This time

Get it to: Rajon Rondo

While Rajon Rondo generally has big games vs Chicago, he’s been bleeding turnovers lately. 14 in the past two games and 33 over the past 6. His 3.9 TO per game mark is the highest of his career.  While the return of Kirk Hinrich bolsters an already strong Bulls defense, there is one chink in the armor –  in transition (27th in the league). For the Celtics to win, Rajon needs to push the tempo and penetrate in the half court, forcing Chicago’s bigs to rotate out of position.

Gotta stop: Luol Deng

I almost always pick Carlos Boozer or Joakim Noah as the guys to stop, but tonight I’m going with Deng. Why? Because I remain extremely concerned about Paul Pierce’s mobility. If we get the lead-footed Truth in this game, Deng could feast. One bright note – Luol is shooting just 28% from three.

The Wild Card: Jeff Green and Co.

The Bulls are playing well – defensively. They’re 7-3 in their last ten, mainly because they’re holding opponents to 86.5 ppg over that stretch. Boston needs offense from everyone (yes, I’m talking to you Jeff Green and Courtney Lee/Jason Terry). Aside from Nate Robinson, Chicago’s second unit is full of brick-layers. The Celtics second unit needs to score. How’s that for analysis?

How we see it goin’ down

The Celtics were embarrassed by Houston and San Antonio over the weekend. Doc Rivers called out their conditioning and said the team took a collective step back. And worst of all, I’m starting to lose faith in Banner 18. Now don’t jump up my ass for writing them off, because I’m not doing that. I’m simply starting to wonder if they have “it” this year. I’m hopeful they’ll take heed at the criticism and respond with a strong effort.

Celtics  94

Bulls     93

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  • Grandad434

    The MIG need this win badly tonight! If it was televised we would see Beast Mode Rondo, but I’ll settle for Altered Beast Mode Rondo for the win. Chi-Town will be hard to tangle with once DRose is back. Both teams will be much more dominate once the all-star break hits.

  • http://www.team-basketball.com Maria

    For one brief moment I lost faith, but I have a feeling this team will kick it into high gear after the All-Star Break just like last year.

  • Chief

    The Celts will come out with a better defensive mindset against their old coach, but will struggle in their half court sets. The Bulls will get to many extra chances…

    Celtics 88
    Bulls 83

    • Chief

      Guess I was close on the Celts score, but was way off on the Bulls. Our defense needs some serious help!!

  • CelticsKid34

    time to panic? no. Time for a trade? yup. im tellin you PHX is a goldmine of Celtics needs. they want to unload beasley, gortat has made it clear to the front office that he wants out, and they have some young gaurds at clearance prices. once bass’s contract is freed up on jan15 i would expect danny to pull off a trade to PHX for gortat. will he pursue an unwanted offensive machine in beasley? i dont know but i have a really good feeling something awesome is going to happen before the trade deadline

    • SamR

      That would be amazing. Gortat’s rebounding ability would be very helpful. I for one am sick of the endless 2nd chance points by other teams.

  • a.randhawa93

    I am going out on a limb and predicting a 15+ celtic win tonight, before garbage time anyway.

  • RedsLoveChild

    Chicago 99
    Boston 91

  • JimmyG

    If we are playing well in April, that’s all that matters. It’s a long season and the team is still working out the kinks. They haven’t been playing together that long yet. When they have the chemistry figured out they’ll be just fine. Having said that, I wouldn’t complain if we picked up Gortat.

  • TommyPoints

    I will be rip shit if we involve Bass in a deal for Gortat…Bass is the most underappreciated guy on the team.

  • Chris

    This team is starting to show how pathetic they really are. I’m a diehard Celtics fan, and always will be. That doesn’t mean I won’t be extremely upset when the Celtics lose. This is becoming ridiculous. Fundamental basketball is horrendous with this team right now. No box-out, no effort, and no hustle. They should be tied or be in charge of the Atlantic division, not scrapping just to stay above .500.

    Danny Ainge saved this team in the summer of 2007, and slowly brought it back to mediocrity in the summer of 2008. Of course, this team could become magic and dominant and prove me wrong. Then I’ll be eating my words as I watch them play in the ECF in May…

    Such is the life of a Celtics fan