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Sweet Caroline

10.19.08 at 1:28 pm ET
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Thoughts of the Boston Red Sox are never far from the minds of fans at the Garden. During a second quarter timeout, “Sweet Caroline” blared through the speakers as a message reading “Game 7’s have become a tradition in Boston” appeared on the Jumbotron. Celtics jerseys will always reign supreme in this building but there are a noticeable number of Red Sox Nation members showing their support for the defending World Series champions today.

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Celtics Go Small to Start Second Quarter

10.19.08 at 1:23 pm ET
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Up 30-18, the Celtics started the second quarter with an undersized lineup of Gabe Pruitt, Eddie House, Tony Allen, Glen Davis, and Leon Powe. Powe, playing the five spot,  quickly earned his share of bruises by single-handedly taking on the Nets under the basket on two consecutive possessions.

Rivers subbed Bill Walker in for Pruitt around the seven-minute mark. The PG got his first rest after playing 16 minutes (6 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists). House shifted to the one and and Allen to the two, giving the Celtics more size on the perimeter.

Read More: Bill Walker, Boston Celtics, eddie house, Gabe Pruitt

First Quarter Notes

10.19.08 at 1:09 pm ET
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Paul Pierce and Gabe Pruitt played all 12 minutes and the C’s built a 30-18 lead. The subs were: Leon Powe (for Kendrick Perkins), Tony Allen (for Ray Allen) and Baby Davis for Kevin Garnett.

Garnett had the best run getting eight points and five rebounds. He worked over Yi Jianlin on defense and dealt with massive rookie Brook Lopez on defense. Pierce also played quality minutes, going for five points, three boards and three assists.
Jessica’s going to take you through the second quarter, so check out her stuff right here.

Pruitt Watch

10.19.08 at 12:58 pm ET
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So far young Gabe Pruitt has been doing exactly what Doc Rivers wanted him to do. He knocked down two 3-pointers and left a nice dish for a KG slam.

Of all the intriguing guys the Celtics have down their bench Pruitt might be the most worth watching. It’s no secret that Eddie House is a not a pure backup point guard. Eddie’s better at it than people give him credit for, and his unique ability to knock down perimeter jump shots is perfect for the Celtics second unit. But if Pruitt can develop into a legit backup point that would allow Doc to play the two of them together in spots, and that would obviously allow House to do what he does best.

There’s no question that Pruitt can play in this league. The question is whether he can play for a team with championship aspirations.

In an unrelated note: Perk is a beast.

Perkins in Foul Trouble

10.19.08 at 12:51 pm ET
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It took a little more than four minutes for Kendrick Perkins to get two fouls. The other night, Mike and Donny were talking about how winning a championship might help guys like Perk avoid ticky-tack fouls. So far in preseason that has not been the case. He got his second the way he usually gets his second: by stepping out to set a screen.

Somewhat interestingly, Kevin Garnett stepped out a bit on the previous possession, and… no call.

Rondo Knows How to Work a Crowd

10.19.08 at 12:42 pm ET
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Rajon Rondo got to do the honors of thanking the crowd for showing up and he offered a “Let’s go Red Sox” much to the crowd’s delight. It was noted in the locker room before the game that Rondo has added a little playfully sarcastic edge when he talks to reporters.

There is nothing the press likes better than sarcasm, since we’re such bitter humans. What I’m trying to say is, the kid is really finding his comfort zone.

Live From the Garden

10.19.08 at 12:30 pm ET
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Because that’s just the kind of aggressive media start-up that we are, we’re tag teaming this afternoon’s huge preseason game. Be sure to check out my colleague Jessica Camerato’s blog.

After today there is only one more exhibition game left before the season starts next Tuesday. That means time is running out for some of the youngsters to make an impression on Doc Rivers and the staff. We’ll be keeping an eye on Gabe Pruitt, specifically, who is starting for Rajon Rondo.

We’ll also be watching the Nets with a bit of interest today. They’ve assembled a bit of a quirky roster with some youth but also some solid veteran role-players like Eduardo Najera and Bobby Simmons. Those are the kind of players rebuilding teams forget to include sometimes. They are the kind of players who can dole out life lessons, and more importantly, show the proper way to make a defensive rotation.

Doc expects the Nets to be a pain in the ass kind of team this year, and while he didn’t say it, the parallels to his old Orlando team seem pretty strong: A star scorer, plus promising youth, plus veterans who don’t put up with any crap and you might have a team that sneaks into the playoffs.

Tip-off is coming soon. Thanks for spending part of your Sunday with us.

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