I was unable to sleep Monday night. I was busy thinking about the opportunity the Celts pissed away. Despite consuming double digit beers on my couch, I woke up this morning feeling much better than I thought I would. I fully expected to turn on sports radio and hear all the schmucks in the area calling up, mentioning the Bruins, and how they choked, yada yada yada.
Well, Boston did not disappoint me. The classic fans who were nowhere to be found when the Celts hit a rough stretch at the end of the season– finishing 27-27 in their last 54 games– suddenly became experts on this team, and how it’s going to fare moving forward. I fully expected the negativity, but it still pissed me off. Everyone needs to CALM THE F*CK DOWN! Yes the Green lost last night. Yes, it sucked and it was painful–but for god’s sake, let’s not lose our minds here.
Orlando played out of their mind last night (outside of Vince “A-rod” Carter, who was once again absent in a big game). They did everything they needed to do to keep this series going. I’ll be honest, I was impressed when the game went into overtime, and the Magic answered. I figured Dwight was ready to go back to doing movies (awesome trailor by the way for “Just Wright” staring Howard and Queen Latifah, seriously, looks like a classic). I figured Matt Barnes was ready to go back to the slums and sling the crack rock, but no, they answered.
They hit a couple lucky shots in the overtime, and ended up on top. That is not the point of this entry. You will see all the highlights in the coming days of why the Celts will choke, and comparisons to the Bruins, etc. I am here to tell you that there is no way its going to happen. Hockey is not basketball, and these C’s are not an overacheiving Bruins team that was running on fumes a little over a week ago. Below are 10 reasons the Green will end this series Wednesday night in Orlando.
10. The Green will not shoot that badly from 3-point land again – Yes, Ray Allen was money down the stretch and in overtime, but they still shot around 30 percent from 3 from the game, and nobody outside of Allen hit one all game.
9. Rondo will return to form – Rondo had an off game last night. He was not controlling the tempo, he did not play great defense, and he did not put pressure on the Orlando defense. He is allowed one stinker in the last 10 playoff games because he has been our MVP, but mark my words, he will not throw up another 9 point, 8 assist game. I would expect no less than 17 points and 13 assists next game (accompanied by him once again taking Jason Williams’ manhood).
8. Perk will play better defense – I don’t know if his knees are killing him or what, but Kendrick Perkins just wasn’t as effective on Howard last night. Glen Davis probably played the best D on Howard, and we barely even saw Perk in the 4th quarter. He will come back to show everyone why he is the best post defender in the league.
7. Jameer Nelson will not get to the paint that easily again – Nelson had his way with the Celtics on the perimeter, and knifed into the lane whenever he wanted. Whether he was pulling up for bull shit 3′s (that bank 3 in overtime was just complete horseshit) or drving into the lane off balance and throwing the ball up in the air for Howard, Nelson dominated. Rest assured, Doc will not let that happen again. Look for Nelson to be bottled up by Tony Allen and Rondo, who will only give Nelson looks from the perimeter.
6. Nobody Sweeps in David Stern’s Conference Finals – I’m typically not one of those guys that buys the rumor that the NBA is fixed, but last night got me thinking. When Pierce got mauled more than 2 times going to the basket without a call in the 4th, and when Howard was not issued a technical after getting
in a skirmish with KG, you have to wonder. Sterney doesn’t want to miss out on some precious revenue back in Orlando.
5. Tony Allen will not revert back to 2006 TA again – Allen looked like he did back when the C’s were in the lottery last night. Dribbling off his foot like an idiot, and commiting stupid fouls that sent Orlando to the line. He needs to get back to bringing the energy and slicing to the basket.
4. Orlando has Vince Carter - If anyone knows Vince Carter, they know he is miserable when the lights are at their brightest. That’s why he has never taken a team to the Finals. He is lazy, soft, and a selfish ball player. He doesn’t do anything tough and disappears when his team needs him most. Hell, J.J. Redick got more time than him last night…nuff said.
3. Speaking of J.J. Redick, no way he keeps up this pace – Reddick has been the most consistent players for Orlando in this series. He has knocked down open jumpers, gotten to the foul line, and played good defense. Redick is a solid bench player in the NBA, no more, and he will not continue to hurt the Celts on the offensive end. Plus when I was in college I used to work with a kid who went to Duke and said JJ loves banging fat chicks…..just a little tidbit.
2. KG will not hit a wall again - KG started 5-5 from the field and looked great, but then he hit a wall. He missed 8 of his last 9 shots and looked generally tired in the overtime. This is probably because Perk was out for so long and Garnett got so worked up over his skirmish with Howard. Anyway, he will get back to what he has done over the last 2 weeks. A solid 16 point 9 rebound effort, and the best pick-and-roll defender in the league.
1. Pierce is going to close this out – Pierce can’t be happy with how he finished last night. Puking away that final possession in regulation, and missing 2 wide open 3′s in the overtime. I know he had 32 points and kept us in this game, but knowing the captain, he is going to be dialed in and ready to give a big F*ck you to the Orlando faithful.
This one ain’t comin back to Boston. On a side note, does anyone else want to shoot themselves when they hear Mark Jackson say “mama there goes that man.” We get it buddy–you’re from New York and grew up playing at Rucker Park, but it gets old when you say it 10 times.
Notebook: Rajon Rondo was limited by muscle spasms in Game 4, but told reporters he is feeling better tonight…Rashard Lewis has been battling a stomach virus all series long, and will take intravenous fluids before Game 5…Magic coach Stan Van Gundy expects J.J. Redick to continue to contribute and play big minutes…Celtics assistant coach Tom Thibodeau will likely be offered the head coaching job for the New Orleans Hornets sometime soon.