The Celtics have gotten rid of their morning walkthrough, but that doesn’t mean we have to. Here are a few Celtics links, and maybe even an NBA link or two, to help wake you up and get you focused for the day.
A. Sherrod Blakely, CSNNE – “As hard as Boston fought to get back into the game, the early hay maker landed by the Nuggets clearly affected the C’s down the stretch. ‘My mom always used to tell me, ‘It ain’t how you start the fight, it’s how you finish,’ ‘ said Kevin Garnett. ‘If you can withstand the first blow — hopefully it ain’t [an MMA superstar] Kimbo Slice blow . . . you withstand it; you take it and you keep throwing punches and hopefully something happens.’ When asked whether Denver’s early dominance was a Kimbo Slice blow, Garnett responded, ‘Very much so. You saw we shook that off, got some ice water thrown in our face and continued . . . but we could never get the momentum back.’”
Steve Bulpett, Boston Herald – “‘I just think it’s very difficult that even after the score’s tied, you’ve been trying so hard to get back in the game you run out of gas,’ Rivers said. ‘We scored 105 points and shot 53 percent and lost the game, and we’re a great defensive team. We just were not (in this game).’”
Julian Benbow, Boston Globe – “‘You’ve got to put out a lot of energy,’ Daniels said. ‘It’s a very tough game. You can’t dig a hole for yourself. They’re a great team. We just had to fight it out. We just dug ourselves a hole too deep and had to put out a lot of energy.’ Before the Celtics set out for the West Coast, Rivers told his team he wanted to see if it could sweep all four games on the trip. After wins over the Kings, Lakers, and Blazers, the Nuggets spoiled the plan but clawing back to lose by only single digits took away some of the sting. ‘We know we’re playing better basketball,’ said Pierce. ‘And except for one or two quarters [yesterday], I’m happy with the way we fought.’”
A. Sherrod Blakely, CSNNE – “Pierce believes the thumb will improve between now and Boston’s next game, Tuesday against the New York Knicks. But for now, ‘the hardest thing is catching and gripping [the ball] . . . that’s everything you do with the basketball,’ Pierce said. ‘Basically, I try to play off instincts. My instincts are shoot the ball, but it’s not the same shot,’ he continued. ‘Even my free throws feel weird. But like I said, I feel I have to help in other ways.’”
Zach Lowe, Celtics Hub – “Sunday’s game pitted the league’s second-most efficient offense against the league’s stingiest defense. They say a good defense always beats a good offense. They are stupid. Denver torched Boston, and it didn’t use anything fancy to do it. The basic screen/roll was enough to shred the C’s defense. Few point guards run it better than Chauncey Billups, but the C’s, especially early, didn’t defend the screen/roll with their usual precision and vigor. Here’s one example (in slow-mo) from that dismal first quarter:[...]”