Highlights – Celtics don’t show up for 3 quarters then make epic comeback attempt, Knicks don’t impress, Keep the Gang for one more try
Celtics don’t show up for 3 quarters then make epic comeback attempt: If you ever wanted to watch a team get dominated in every facet of the game, the Celtics showed it to you on Friday night. They couldn’t shoot, weren’t switching right on defense, and generally had no flow either defensively or offensively. They shot 32% from the field and had a 20 point deficit heading into the 4th. But then the script flipped and the Celtics showed the heart they have shown all season by going on a 20-0 run. They cut the lead down to 4 points behind Bradley (who decided to show up for the series in the last quarter) and Green. But in the end the Celtics ran out of gas and the Knicks were able to squeak out a win. The Celtics went down with the type of heart we’ve seen them have for the past 6 seasons, and ended the season with a 4th quarter effort that was in no way embarrassing.
Knicks don’t impress: With all the talk of how the Knicks were now making the leap to Championship contenders, this series should put a halt in that thinking. They were impressive in the first 3 games of the series, but then came out of the last 3 looking like immature punks. Wearing funeral garb to a home game that they eventually lost was both ridiculous and moronic as it only served to put the unearned spotlight on themselves. They then proceeded to let a team that was down by 20 in Game 6, make a 4th quarter run that scared even the most confident Knick fans. In the end they are celebrating a Round 1 victory. Round 1 is not where Champions are made, only tested. And in the departments of intelligence and heart the Knicks failed.
Keep the Gang for one more try: A majority of pundits are saying that the Celtics and Danny should part ways with both KG and Pierce and officially start the rebuilding process around Rondo, Green, Bradley and Sullinger. This seems to be a good thought process in that those are some young chips that a team could start to build a nucleus around. Also the 27 million Pierce and KG will be earning next year would put a pause on any GM’s thought process when looking at a 36 and 37 year old. The Celtics could buy out Pierce for $5 million which would spur KG to retire and open up some cap space for the C’s. But this would only open up some cap space for what I consider a weak free agency class. The Celtics are not going to get Dwight Howard, and Al Jefferson is restricted. The list of free agents under that has some other notables, but nothing compared to 2014′s free-agent class. What the Celtics should do is bring the whole gang back for one more attempt. A healthy Rondo and Sullinger will add some key pieces to what was a depleted team down the stretch. Green has emerged to look like a border-line All-Star, and Bradly will be one more season removed from surgery. KG and Pierce could play 25 minutes during the regular season and rest up for what would hopefully be a long playoffs. The Celtics would then have the added experience and youth that most teams dream of. KG and Pierce could also continue to instill in the young guys the Celtic Pride that has come to define this current team. Lastly the contracts of Pierce and KG would come off the books for 2014, when there would actually be some decent free agents. JET, Bass and Lee could all be used as trade bait to maybe bring in one more big, or kept if nothing shows up. Overall the Celtics have some options, but I’m hoping they bring it back for one more run.