Thursday, November 15, 2007

At 7-0

This has not happened in a long time. The Boston Celtics having the best record in the NBA and ranked Number ONE in the power polls. On a night where Poor Energy seemed a legitimate excuse for losing to the revenge minded New Jersey Nets, the Celtics took a tight, sloppy game and simply handed it to New Jersey in the 2nd half with the Allen brothers, Posey, Baby, and Scalabrine out on the dance floor. Forcing TO after TO, and blocking anything NJ brought into the lane, the Celtics knocked out the Nets decisively with KG and PP getting their due rest.

And in listening to a glowing Bill Walton, who still exhibits that Boston Celtics Pride, the Celtics are playing magnificent basketball with that exquisite passing. I know, if you are not a Celtics fan and a certified Boston sports hater, you are probably blowing chow reading this. I say too bad because I am eating this up after 20 years of suffering that I am sure has trimmed some years off the back end of my career as a Boston sports fan beginning with the 1967 World Series and accelerated by the sports call of one Johnny Most.

Bird, McHale, and Parish can walk through the door and remember how good winning Celtics basketball once was and can be. Although for Bird and especially for McHale, it is career limiting for them at this point. Maybe Ainge can hire them as senior consultants.

A guy I feel bad for is Antione Walker who is hopelessly pidgeonholed in Minnesota as the elder statesman. He will continue to go out and compete because he plays for the love of the game. His skills are limited but last night he played within himself and contributed to Minnesota's 1st victory of the season. On a team that figures to be horrible with a marginal coach, any Minnesota win is a blessing because most of their key components are Boston Celtics alumni. We'll see how the Gomes, Walker, and Jefferson lineup fare in the WC.

The Stephon Marbury - Isiah Thomas affair in New York is a disgrace. The Knicks would benefit more than any other team with an NFL style hard cap with no guarentee contracts. They claim to have the best 12th man in the league. It is too bad that positions 1 through 5 are overpaid pukes, though. New York, will have to burn off three or four of those horrible contracts and stockpile young talent. Getting rid of Steve Francis for Zachary Randolph was a good move for them but he can't be a team leader.

Charlotte is breaking out into a decent team these days with Jason Richardson, Meka Okafor, and Ray Felton.

I am impressed with the Atlanta Hawks who had an outstanding draft of Acie Law and Al Horford to go with Joe Johnson, Josh CHildress, and Zaza Pachulia. They will move up the EC ladder quickly. Heck they beat Dallas and Phoenix already and gave us a tough game for three quarters in Boston.

Miami has plummeted quickly and Riley has no clue what to do except hope Dewayne Wade can single handedly right this shipwreck. Shaquille O'Neal is less and less of a factor as the years go by. Alonzo Mourning, an amazing story, is finally slowing down. Mark Blount and RD are there to show up, play, get beat, and then go party in Miami Beach after the game. Riley looks horrible and this losing is obviously getting to him. The Miami sports scene is clearly a mess right now.

Detriot won a tough game by making all the plays down the stretch against Golden State. They are still highly competitive. I am looking foward to a matchup with them to see how the Celtics stack up with the best EC franchise over the past five seasons.

Indiana is falling quickly after a good opening 5 games. They don't have a lot of talent but they will nail any team that is flat.

Chicago is off to another terrible start but that seems to be in their DNA. Perhaps they are waiting to ambush Boston in the Windy City on a December night and call it the start of the NBA season. Honestly, I think Scott Skiles is a great coach and you would think they would get off to a better start than that.

Well I better go to work before I am fired. Talk to you soon.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Circle This Date,5143,695224569,00.html

He who talk bad about my Celtics shall pay. He says it is nothing personal. But my favorite team has not won the championship in 22 years. Well, deseretnews troll, I am taking this personal and have targeted Saturday, December 29, 2007 to take my frustrations out on the Utah Jazz. Nothing personal. I am going for that crown that Bill Walton has predicted we would get.

Now onto todays game:

I feel the Celtics have a tough matchup with the Toronto Raptors this afternoon. The sad thing is that Bostonians will not pay much attention to this game due to Super Bowl 41 and a half.

The preseason contest at Rome, Italy was an indicator that both teams will be playoff teams this year as the intensity level was already at mid-season. As FLCeltfan has already pointed out, the key matchups are Rondo-TJ Ford, Garnett-Bosh, and add in Bargani-Perkins as well as the benches and coaching and this has the makings of a good early season test for the Celtics.

Key will be defending the perimeter so the Celtics should take an outside inside approach to everyone except TJ Ford. TJ will beat with his penetration (Same could be said about Rondo, though). The Boston Celtics may not win this game.

Sunday, November 4, 2007 11:00 CST

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Good opening win

The Celtics were tight in the opening quarter but laid the foundation for a blowout W by playing tough defense and working on Goose Egg Arenas. Then with Pierce leading the way in the 2nd quarter, the Celtics established a double digit lead and steadily extended it. The ball moved on offense while Washington was consistently stifled. About the only matchup the Celtics lost was Brendon Haywood on Kendrick Perkins.

Rondo continues to impress me more and more as the traditional PG. He made a nice open look J in the 3rd qtr.

Things got sloppy in the 2nd half once the Celtics got a 25 point lead. Pierce dribbling into double teams. Tony Allen driving and getting stripped. KG came in and stabilized things a lot and prevented a potential Washington comeback.

Just listening to JB, Duke, and Jughead post game review. I thank all of them and they will get significant recognition sometime this year.

Also, Bill Walton pontificated on ESPN about how this night was magical in Boston and how the 22 year drought was finally over.

The 2008 journey has just begun.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

First 20 games

I, like Jeff over at Celticsblog tend to view the 1st 20 games of a season critical to which direction the teams will go. Injuries do play a key role. Last year I expected the Celtics to start well because they had a lot of bottom feeders at home. It all went wrong the 1st night against Oklahoma and they struggled to find wins even before the injuries hit. Last years team was a complete bust.

This offseason came the remarkable remake in Boston. All those young assets and draft picks were turned into Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett. House and Posey quickly walked through that door. The rest of the east got stronger top to bottom while quite frankly, the west got weaker overall. So it will be a balanced battle in the East but Boston should quickly establish themselves as a contender.

Nov 2 vs Washington 8:00 pm ESPN, CSN (Must win opening night)
Nov 4 at Toronto 2:30 pm (tough battle but the C's prevail)
Nov 7 vs Denver 7:30 pm (Control the pace - limit TO's - W)
Nov 9 vs Atlanta 7:30 pm (Young team - Must Win)
Nov 10 at New Jersey 7:30 pm NBA, YES (Send message - W)
Nov 13 at Indiana 7:00 pm FSIN (This could bite us - Should be a W but)
Nov 14 vs New Jersey 7:30 pm YES (I'm sick of Joisee - Beat em again)
Nov 16 vs Miami 7:30 pm SUN (Perkins breaks Blounts nose - W)
Nov 18 at Orlando 6:00 pm NBA (This maybe a designated game)
Nov 21 vs Golden State 7:30 pm FSBA (Whoa Nellie gives us a tough time but keep the pace slow and get a W)
Nov 23 vs LA Lakers 7:30 pm KCAL (Must W - Lakers will stink this year)
Nov 24 at Charlotte 7:00 pm (Historically not a friendly place to us - L)
Nov 27 at Cleveland 7:00 pm NBA, FSOH (Another toughie - L)
Nov 29 vs New York 8:00 pm TNT, MSG (Must blow these bastards out)
Nov 30 at Miami 8:00 pm (Depends on D Wade)
Dec 2 vs Cleveland 12:30 pm FSOH (Home Win)
Dec 5 at Philadelphia 7:00 pm CSNP (Road Win)
Dec 7 vs Toronto 7:30 pm (Home Win)
Dec 8 at Chicago 8:30 pm WGN (Show down goes to the Bulls
Dec 12 vs Sacramento 7:30 pm KXTV (Must Win)

I peg us to get to 14 wins and 6 losses - good for a 2 or 3 game lead in the Atlantic Division. There will be Fire Doc chants on the message board. If it is 12-8 and we are a close second, I will still be fine. 10-10 or worse is troubling because I see this as an easier part of the schedule.