I know that Ray is suffering from bad bone spurs in his ankle, Pierce is chasing around Igoudala with a strained MCL that must be more painful than I can imagine, and Bradley’s shoulder has been dislocated so much that its basically an exception now when it doesn’t pop out during a game. And all of these injuries can be used by the Celtics as excuses for their bad play. But the Celtics have shown that they are able to handle the injuries and play great in this series, like in Game 3. So it is confusing at times to see them play both Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Games 2 and 4 both showed this to an extreme degree. The Celtics started off very good in both games, leading by 9-0 in Game 2 and 12-0 in Game 4, but in both games the Celtics all but disappeared in the 3rd quarter.
The TNT announcers basically called the series after halftime in Game 4, saying that the Celts were a lock to win the game. But after an embarrassing 2nd half, the Celtics are tied 2-2, and the whole series is in question.
The problem in my opinion is definitely the offensive consistency of the Celtics. At times they seem to be able to score at will. But then at other times they seem lost on offense (they went almost 7 minutes without a field-goal in Game 4). Many have pointed out that the game has changed whenever KG has been double teamed and played the Sixers have played him more aggressively. For some reason the Celtics haven’t been able to effectively counter that defense.
The shooting has been the most inconsistent thing for the Celtics. Brandon Bass has rode the suck to good roller-coaster for the past 4 games in terms of shooting. Ray Allen and Pietrus have also been inconsistent behind the arc. Throughout the regular season these 3 were some of the most consistent shooters for the Celtics.
Now the issue for the Celtics is basically how to get these guys shooting more consistently. Does Doc need to run more screens for Ray to get him more shots, or maybe just have Rondo be more aggressive and drive and dish to the open man. One thing is sure, if the outside shooters are able to hit their shots, then the Sixers will be less likely to double KG effectively.
I guess that’s why the Celtics are still the favorites of this series. It’s more in their hands to lose, then its in the Sixers’ hands to win. The Celtics just need to figure out how to handle the surprisingly resilient Sixers. It’s probably good that the Celtics have Doc in their corner, as he is considered one of the best tactical and motivating coaches in the game. And right now that’s what the Celtics need.
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- Celtics show Heart – Beat Knicks in must win Game 4 by a score of 90-97
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