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Recap: Paul Pierce saves bipolar Celtics from heartbreaking loss

Chuck - Red's Army February 3, 2013 Gametime, Recaps 45 Comments

Is this team bipolar or what? The Celtics tuned up the Clippers with 59 points in the first half. The offense was crisp, efficient and just plain smart. The defense was solid and the Clippers helped by playing sloppy. The combination resulted in a 19 point halftime lead.

The second half was the exact opposite. The defense evaporated. The offense stopped. No movement. Sloppy passing. If not for some clutch buckets by Jason Terry and Paul Pierce, along with a questionable decision by Vinny Del Negro to not foul on the final possession, the Celtics might have lost this game.

But they won it, 106-104. Grind it out, baby. 4-0 since Rajon Rondo’s injury.

The Green:

Jason Terry’s 17-footer with 1:01 remaining stretched the lead from 3 to 5 points. Terry had 13 points, 6 assists on 5-7 shooting. Get JET more shots, please.

Paul Pierce (22 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 6 TOs) sealed the game with a 26-footer right in Matt Barnes face. I thought Del Negro should have instructed his team to foul on that last possession. Even if Pierce rims out that trey, the Clippers would have needed a clean rebound to have more than .8 seconds for their final shot.

Leandro Barbosa led the bench brigade with 14 points in 21 minutes.

The Gross:

The offense in the 4th quarter was hideous.  No movement. Sloppy passing. 7 turnovers in 12 minutes.

Greenlights:

Jason Terry feeds Chris Wilcox for dunk

Paul Pierce finds KG for open layup in halfcourt set

The Grid:

  • The Celtics won the battle of the benches; 52-29
  • Brandon Bass led BOS with 8 rebounds
  • The Celtics outscored LAC 26-10 in the 2nd quarter
  • BOS made 11-18 3 FG
  • The Clippers had 6 dunks in the 1st quarter
The Sporting News’ Sean Devaney reports the Clippers have contacted the Celtics about a deal for Kevin Garnett. The Clippers are reportedly offering Eric Bledsoe and Caron Butler. I don’t like that deal. If the Celtics are going to move Garnett, they better get a big man in return.

Box score

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  • http://www.redsarmy.com KWAPT

    Keep racking up the wins..you knew the Clips would make a run in the 2nd half,
    but man these C’s made us sweat out another one.
    Barbosa was so efficient today. Love that Doc is finally using him more
    (even though he’s basically forced to). Despite Bass’ offensive struggles,
    he was very active on the boards today doing whatever he could to make it harder for Clips’ bigs.
    Terry also coming along nicely-5 straight game in double-figures and another key shot late in the game.
    Now we get 2.5 days off before the back to back of Raps/Fakers. Enjoy rest of your SB Sunday folks.

    • Larry Legend

      Paul Pierce is a tough SOB. Guy loves the moment. Needs to retire a Celtic. That’s all.

  • anthony83

    The Truth still a killer, shame, I find it amazing that every year Pierce is on rumors of trades, he’s a legend, he should retire a Celtic, Perhaps Duncan or Kobe would come from LA or SA?, Like Pierce.
    Long live the # 34, with 35 years remains an incredible player, respect, this is a business, but there are things that are not negotiable, Pierce is one of them, is more than a player, a Celtic symbol.

  • LAF

    note to wilcox:
    if you hit on doc’s daughter or said something to his wife or god knows what, please apologize profusely and start getting some meaningful minutes again. because watching that dumbass ubuntu bass is turning me into a very very angry man.

    • KWAPT

      I don’t quite get it myself. This guy runs the floor well, as we saw today, and could be fantastic on the parquet with a group like Bradley, Lee, Barbosa etc. in a semi-small ball situation. Befuddled at why Doc not going w/him more.

      • juks

        Because doc is afraid that Wilcox might re injured his hand thumb!

        • LAF

          why isn’t he afraid of AB hurting his shoulders, then?

          • Alex

            I’m pretty sure only Wilcox and Doc knows the extent of the injury. Wilcox, for all we know, could be having trouble pacing himself with the NBA speed for missing quite a lot of games. Relax.

      • Larry Legend

        It has to be one of two things or both. Wilcox may still be banged up. And he struggles on the defensive end. Other than that I don’t understand why they guy doesn’t play. He’s productive. Energy guy that gets up and down the court.

  • http://driveittothemoon.com/ Lee in Oregon

    The way they played down the stretch left a bad taste, especially the careless passing. At least they held on though.

    That’s the most I’d seen of Bledsoe- I was impressed.

    • LAF

      yeah but the way they’re playing now vs the way they were playing earlier in the season? vaaaaaaaaaaaaaast improvement. they’ll continue to get better. baby steps, baby. baby steps. just gotta keep building on these wins and start peaking in april & may…

  • http://driveittothemoon.com/ Lee in Oregon

    Realgm and hoopshype are reporting a “KG to the Clips” trade rumour…..Bledsoe and Butler are the names they floated…..

    • Quest

      KG has a no trade clause.

      • eddysamson

        If they ask him and agrees he can still be traded.

    • Double P

      Awful trade for us, I probably wouldn’t do it even if they were offering deandre Jordan.. Not impressed with them

      • RedsLoveChild

        This trade would not help at all.

        We already have enough mediocre players standing 6`1″–6`7″…they`re a dime a dozen.

  • Quest

    Vets saved the game!!
    Guys have to learn to play hard for 48 min. Its what makes a championship team.
    Raptors have upped the anty with the addition of Rudy Gay.

  • Quest

    KG has to agree to waive no trade clause. Positives for KG he lives in Malibu and the Clippers have some grt pieces to make a play off run for the next 2-3 yrs.
    If KG goes then the Celtics have no chance for the playoff run and will have to conceed they are in rebuild mode.
    Hoping KG retires Celtic but Clippers may have more to offer him if KG wants to play to end of his contract. If KG goes then PP will retire. Wow new era starting for Boston.

  • Chris 2.0

    Paul Pierce for threeee!!!! Legendary. And right in the face of that puke Matt Barnes makes it even sweeter.
    I hope this team proves me wrong and does something special with the rest of this season.

  • celtics33

    Confusing to watch Doc’s 4th quarter lineups and the Celtic’s offense.

    For most of 3 quarter the team was great offensively because they pushed the pace, passed it to open teammates and had everyone involved.

    Barbosa was hitting shots, Jeff Green was flying around the court on both ends.

    So what does Doc do…

    Barbosa and Green sit for most of the 4th quarter while the struggling Courtney Lee misses shots, gets shredded on defense and turns the ball over.

    The offense became Paul Pierce dribbling around until the shot clock winds down while everyone stood around and watched. Yes Pierce hit some great shots but many were bailouts at the end of poor offensive possessions.

    Painful to watch Doc go completely away from what was working and seem incapable of making any adjustments as the lead kept slipping away.

    Thankfully the margin was big enough to hold on as this game would have likely been lost with another couple minutes of action…

  • Brick James

    Avery Bradley’s flop saved the game.

  • Ty

    I see no reason why the C’s would consider this rumored KG deal. KG is a superstar and the heart and soul of this team. He still plays high caliber basketball consistently. It’s not a knock on Bledsoe because he’s really talented- but Lee/Bradley/Terry/Barbosa are finally developing the chemistry we’ve all been waiting for and they’ve shown that it can be very effective and difficult to stop. Plus, with Sully out, unless this is about replacing Rondo with Bledsoe (no thanks, btw), it really makes no sense to trade for small parts. Cs need a banger. Not a guard.

  • tyler

    I hope that DA is as smart as he claims and trades KG. This team is not winning the NBA title so what is the point of keeping overpaid old players and paying luxury tax. If the Celtics are not good enough to win the title what is the point of paying so much. Time to rebuild. This is now year six of the three year window.

    Stop with this retiring a Celtic crap. Does that get you more wins, draft picks or young stars? That idea died 30-40 years ago.

    • Mannie

      Kg is not overpaid for what he does for this Celtic team and he is still playing at a very high level. 

    • kobe

      KG gets tickets sales, DA don’t get tickets sales, if DA trade KG his @/s/s is fired.

      DA is not smart he’s dumb

    • Danno

      And you’re saving money for what, exactly? Who do you think they’re going to Sign? Who did we sign thus year with Rays salary?

      This is a really dumb idea, no offense.

    • john

      You must be one of tghose fantasy fans.

  • kobe

    pathetic Cs fans want KG to trade with Bledsoe and Butler. Lol, you are truly are bandwagon.

    Why not trade KG for antawn jamison and steve blake

    • Rondo To KG

      How’s running Pau Gasol out of town going for you?

    • Jon with no H

      ha, literally no one has said they like this KG trade scenario.

      and why would jamison and blake be an equivalent trade? bledsoe and butler don’t suck

  • Quest

    What’s the hurry? Danny said he’d like to wait until Feb 21 to make final decisions. A lot can happen in the market until then and can see what this grp can do in the next few gmes before using his trigger finger.

  • frickenWaaaltaaah

    Trading KG for that deal would be pointless and dumb.

    Butler and Bledsoe are FA’s in summer 14. But KG’s deal ends in summer 15 and the C’s and Clippers both know he’ll retire if he declines significantly because it’s Kev. So the ‘saving money’ angle doesn’t make any sense at all. In fact it probably works out better for the Clippers, money wise.

    The Clips want to trade Bledsoe because they realize he wants a starting job somewhere and they won’t be able to resign him.

    C’s will have the same issue. Is Bledsoe a nice point guard? Sure. Is he a first tier, top of the NBA point guard? Maybe in that down the road who can say, but probably not.

    The Caron Butler part of the deal shouldn’t require any explanation. It makes 0.0000% sense for the Celtics.

    His contract ends when Pierce’s contract ends so the money thing is pointless. Butler is basically the poor man’s Paul Pierce and we have Paul Pierce. Butler is younger but not young; he turns 33 next month. The C’s already have a younger successor on the roster aka Jeff Green.

    So it’s a really dumb deal. The Clippers would be making the C’s take on a guy we don’t need to get a guy we can’t/won’t resign, and all we have to give up is Kevin durrrr.

  • KGino

    How are u guys even discussing that? KG for butler and Bledsoe… Hmm considering rondo and pierce play the same positions and are 3x better than those guys… Let me think for a second….

    Seriously you guys are screwed up in the head if you even feel a need to discuss that trade. It’s embarrassing, disgusting really.

    Hey idiots.. Retired players = expired contracts = $ to sign good free agents. In case you didn’t know.

  • Boston Man

    Anybody know why they didnt count that 3-point-goaltend at the end of the quarter?

    • LAF

      billy kennedy & eli roe. that’s why.

      • Mike C

        Officiating in this game was horrendos. I’m sure our guys have sore backs after this game, because the clippers were climbing over them for 48 minutes straight. How Griffin can constantly climb over the backs of players who have inside position for the rebound, and not get called for the foul is simply amazing.
        Felt like our guys dodged a bullet tonight by holding on for the win. Paul Pierce, what can you say… he truly is one of the great Celtics of all time. Good win tonight, regardless.

    • Brick James

      Because it was about a foot to the right and short.

  • Paul
    • Reggie35RIP

      Would make zero sense. We NEED big bodies, we can’t afford to give any up, especially not KG.

      Butler’s old and Bledsloe is pretty good, but we’re stacked at guard.

  • Mathieu

    I had a happy heart attack in the 4rth …. Those celtics are killing me :)

  • OlSkool1972

    The Clippers need to put the crack pipe down if they think they can get Garnett for Butler and Bledsoe.

  • Reggie35RIP

    Great (f@#$ing lucky) win. I had my face in my hands for most of the 4th quarter. I would’ve gone on a rampage if we lost that.

  • Me

    there no truth out there but pierce the only truth #34

  • Art

    I was ready to call for Doc Rivers resignation. Number one we’re seeing that he does not know how to coach Rondo under a team concept. Number two he does not know how to coach his team when they get big leads. Pierce and all saved the day yesterday, No KG trade. If Danny can get a high return, Rondo should be considered in a trade. Unless of course he’s considering a new coach who would know how to use Rondo.

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