|Celtics-Raptors Game Blog First Quarter||11.10.08 at 5:36 pm ET|
We are live at the Garden for tonight’s game between the Celtics and Raptors. This is an intriguing matchup for a number of reasons. The Celtics, as we know, play great defense. The Raptors are a very efficient offensive team. Something shall give tonight. Also to watch, the point guard duel between Rajon Rondo and Jose Calderon and the big man matchup between Kevin Garnett and Chris Bosh.
Jess and I will be bringing you all the action, so click through for all the off-the-cuff observations, intentional and unintentional comedy and a few insightful points, as well.
FIRST QUARTER WRAP: Toronto 23-18.
Another slowish start for the Celtics but they showed signs of picking it up late in the first quarter. Jermaine O’Neal has 10 points and is playing his best game as a Raptor. Ray Allen and Paul Pierce kept the Celtics in it offensively with eight and six points, respectively.
Toronto 10-for-23 FG, 13-10 rebounding edge.
Boston: 5-for-16 (7-for-7 from the free throw line.
Take it away, Jess.
– The Ray Allen and Jason Kapono matchup reminds me of a pickup game I played in years ago when the guy guarding me said: I won’t play defense if you don’t.
– Leon Powe’s two free throws just tied the score. Check eei tomorrow for more on Leon who is rapidly becoming a name in this league.
– That was vintage Celtics there. KG had a nice pass to a cutting Ray Allen, which opened a lane and left Paul Pierce open for a 3-pointer. 16-14 Toronto and the C’s are fortunate to be down just two. In case you were wondering, Bill Walker is in uniform and Patrick O’Bryant is in a suit jacket again.
– Good move by Allen to get to the basket, but there again, he had to create that move himself. There is no flow from the starters offensively.
– Toronto: 7-13 from the floor. Boston 3-for-14.
FIRST TIMEOUT (Toronto, 12-7): Here we go again with the slow starts. The Celtics have no movement on offense. The theory here is that they have been trying to establish Garnett in the post much more than they did last year. That’s fine as far as it goes, but that is limiting the rest of the options. The Celtics were at their best last season when they were playing a free-wheeling style.
– Jermaine O’Neal is resurrecting his career right before our eyes.
– Toronto is cross-guarding (copyright Jeff Van Gundy) with Jermaine O’Neal guarding Kevin Garnett, while Kendrick Perkins guards him at the other end. Let’s see if anyone gets lost in transition.
Which is not the same as being Lost in Translation. That would involve Scarlett Johansson and obviously be much much better.
– There’s a good atmosphere in here tonight. Let’s see if the slow starts continue. Asked Doc before the game if there was something he could put his finger on and he said, “starters.” It’s up to them to figure it out.
– Something to watch for tonight: The Raptors shoot about 50 percent from 3-point range, but they don’t take a high volume of 3′s. There’s a sweet spot for them and it’s between 12-15 attempts. Any more than that and they are pressing.
– How do we know it’s a big game? Lucky. Stilts.
That is all.
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