Monday, April 28, 2008

No excuses for this!!!!

Celtics have gone south on us again by poor shooting and lack of athletism. The Celtics are having a lot of trouble matching the Hawks energy level on the road and they are not making shots, not finishing at the rim and not getting much in the way of coaching adjustments in stopping Joe Johnson or Josh Childress.

A lot must change or this series will be lost and then ........ well I do not want to go there, period.

Can the Celtics respond to the Hawks apparent superior athleticism and confidence? Even if the Celtics win Game 5 Wednesday, this series will be far from over. I'm sure that Garnett and Ray Allen did not sign up with Boston to lose the 1st round of the playoffs.

I think Coach Doc is a fine coach (a radical change in opinion for those of you who know me and bother to read my diary) but he must be feeling a bit snake bit when it comes to playoff basketball.

I hope Perkins doesn't get a suspension for stepping on the court during the Za Za - KG altercation. That would force Baby and PJ to play more.

In fairness, the Celtics played better but had trouble making shots for two critical stretches and once again Atlanta made their shots. The 4th quarter was awful for Boston. A ten point lead turned into another horrible set back. Celtics simply lacked good plays on both ends of the court and this does not bode well for future series. Again, I have to wonder what is going on here and what is holding the Celtics back from breaking through on the road. Are they mentally soft? I don't believe so because they won three straight games in Texas. I think Doc is having trouble with adjustments or it is something worse - the Celtics are not in good health and nobody bothered to the media.

I'm confused and worried now.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

What was that?????

OK, I have been hearing that the Celtics have been a bit sloppy the past month and perhaps tonight it caught up with them. Atlanta flat out kicked our ass tonight and that is really all that needs to be said here.

As I said on CSL postgame tonight, the Celtics were not much good in any phase of the game. They did not guard the perimeter, they did not hustle back on defense, they did not share the ball on offense (at least not as well as Atlanta), they shot the ball very poorly, they played passively, were smaller and slower than the Hawks.

Doc was very upset with the Celtics tonight and for good reason. More importantly, he must make some adjustments..... and perhaps plan to use Posey, House, Powe and BBD as the 4 backups. Heck I would use Tony Allen over Sam Cassell for defensive pressure.

The Celtics appeared to never get untracked in the 2nd half. Perhaps the delay due to the clocks threw them off for the night. I had hoped for a 4 game finish to save energy for the later rounds. But this cluster foul-up of a game might be the bad game the Celtics needed to get them going again and play at the Texas road trip level again.

Congratulations to Atlanta, and it sucks to be you Monday and Wednesday. Bye Bye and thanks for letting me vent tonight JB, Jughead, and Duke.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Games One and Two vs Atlanta

Boston has taken care of business at the TD Banknorth so far. They are clearly superior to the Atlanta Hawks at every position. Atlanta tries to hang in there by being physical helping to disrupt the Celtics. That foul in the 1st qtr by Josh Smith on Paul Pierce was BUSH LEAGUE. That should have been an F1 foul. The Celtics continued to punish the Hawks at both ends of the court in all phases of the game.

Tonight, Bibby was wirebrushed hard by the Celtics fans and deservedly so. He is being thoroughly outplayed by 2nd year sensation Rajon Rondo who is a rapidly rising star in this league. Atlanta was better off with Acie Law IV running the point. Perhaps Coach Woodson should consider starting Acie Law IV in Games 3 and 4.

The Hawks have athletic forwards - Josh Smith and Al Horford and a nice SG in Joe Johnson in their SL. They have Zaza Pachulia coming off the bench who can be effective. Perhaps they can give the Celtics trouble in Atlanta but I sincerely doubt they will win a game and make it back to Boston for a game Five. Atlanta pretty much brought everything they had to the table to try to win the game and snatch HCA from the Celtics. The NBA playoffs tell you what kind of team you have. Boston is clearly better in talent, experience, desire, and in poise than Atlanta. Atlanta is a nice team for the future but they should consider trading Mike Bibby this offseason.

The Celtics are doing a great job at hustling and giving up few easy baskets or even uncontested jump shots. Basically, this was a low stress game from the middle of the third quarter and on. I don't even think the lead was ever below 15 in the final frame. After Saturday's game, I will probably talk about the same thing as tonight. I notice there is less to talk about when the Celtics meet expectations and play well in accomplishing their goals. This is the playoffs and that means one game at a time and this blog will cover each game until a 17th Championship is won.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Exhibition Season II is here

The Celtics have gotten to the 60 win plateau for the first time since 1986, I believe. Everytime they get to 60 wins, they win the championship with the exception of 1973 when Havlicek seperated his shoulder against the Knicks. I don't see this team losing either of the 1st two rounds. In fact, I see them going 4-0, 4-0 against the likes of Atlanta and Philly/Cleveland/Washington. Detriot in the third round is when the playoffs get interesting for Boston but I think the Celtics are a better team than Detriot. That leaves the finals with the Western Conference survivor. And Boston has beaten everyone at least once rather badly so they would have the psychological advantage in a potential NBA finals.

The next two weeks of the NBA season will be spent getting confidence going with Sam Cassell and PJ Brown and Doc Rivers will establish a nine man rotation. Tony Allen will be getting more PT to see if he has anything to offer. He was a gifted athlete but his knee injuries have caused him to lose confidence on drives to the basket. He can get after it on the defensive end pretty good and makes some good passes off his drives. He makes too many dumb turnovers.

My best guess is the Celtics will lose against Charlotte and Milwaukee and win the last five games to get to 65 wins and HCA throughout the 2008 playoffs. Doc Rivers will then get his 1st playoff series win (and his 2nd, 3rd, and hopefully 4th) this year.

I guess Doc Rivers has shut this critic up for a long while.