|Game 2: Third quarter update||05.06.09 at 10:03 pm ET|
And now for some defense. Having blitzed Orlando with a red hot first half in which they built a 16-point lead, the Celtics lead is up to 86-64 after holding the Magic to just 5-for-15 shooting in the third.
The fireworks came late in the quarter after Eddie House dropped a 3-pointer on Rafer Alston and Alston whacked House in the back of the head. The two squared off and were assessed double technical fouls. It was clear the officials didn’t see the play as it developed, but they reviewed it after the quarter and let the call stand.
The Celtics are doing all this despite Paul Pierce playing just 10 minute due to foul trouble. No matter. House picked up the slack for the captain, scoring 11 points and making all five of his shots. He’s 9-of-10 for the game.
Lost in all that was Rajon Rondo recording another triple double. He capped it off with a thunderous dunk right through the heart of the Magic defense. The Celtics have 12 minutes to finish off the split.
|Game 2: Second Quarter Update||05.06.09 at 9:14 pm ET|
The Magic wanted to play this game from outside … and paid the price. The Celtics have built a 15-point halftime lead thanks to aggressive play at the basket, outscoring the Magic 32-14 in the paint. They have also outshot the Magic 56% to 41% from the field.
Kendrick Perkins leads all scorers with 14 points (6/7 FG) and has been called for just one foul. Ray Allen, who had a quiet night in Game 1, has added 13 points. J.J. Redick is the high scorer for the Magic with 11 points.
Most importantly, the Celtics have controlled this game without Paul Pierce. He has played just five minutes (3 points) after banging knees with Hedo Turkoglu early in the first quarter.
|Game 2 update: First quarter||05.06.09 at 8:34 pm ET|
In a complete role-reversal the Celtics have come out and taken it to Orlando in the opening quarter with a 26-21 lead. Rajon Rondo racked up eight points, there rebounds and four assists, while Ray Allen scored eight points to go with five rebounds and Kendrick Perkins–who has more than held his own against Dwight Howard–has five points and five boards. The only downside for the Celtics is Paul Pierce who picked up two quick fouls and also banged knees with Hedo Turkoglu. He was limping noticeably while he was on the court.
The Magic are being bailed out by J.J. Redick. Yes, that J.J. Redick who drained three 3-pointers and scored 11 points. Rashard Lewis, meanwhile, is just 1-for-4 from the floor and Orlando is shooting 32 percent.
There were two interesting subs by Doc Rivers. First, he brought in Brian Scalabrine for Big Baby Davis just two minutes into the quarter. Davis appeared unhappy with the move and he and Rivers had a 15-second chat on the sideline when he cane out. The other sub was when Doc called on Stephon Marbury to replace Pierce. That forced the Magic to guard three guards (hello, Chicago) and forced Turkoglu to chase Marbury around.
Also: McLovin is in the house. Repeat: McLovin is in the house.
|Van Gundy: Vermont to Lowell to the NBA||05.06.09 at 7:47 pm ET|
Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy has been criticized by some players for being too uptight on the bench during NBA.
He was anything but just 90 minutes before Game 2 of his team’s Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Celtics on Wednesday night at TD Banknorth Garden.
Van Gundy reflected on his first head coaching job, a Division 3 gig with Castleton State in Vermont, just two years out of the University of Vermont. He would move onto UMass-Lowell, where he coached for four years, and had the privilege of mentoring Leo Parent, the Division 2 player of the year in 1988.
“Leo Parent was the best Division 2 player in the nation,” Van Gundy said. “Even though it was tough at times, he could carry a team for his level, he was maybe the best player I’ve ever coach relative to the level he was playing on. Read the rest of this entry »
|Game 2 pregame: Rajon Rondo||05.06.09 at 7:39 pm ET|
What was Rajon Rondo’s reaction to the news that he had been named to the NBA’s All Defensive Team Second Team? A shrug, basically. “I take pride in my defense,” he said. “It’s nice to be recognized.” It was his only individual goal, Rondo said, but still it didn’t really faze him, as almost nothing does. He did, however, advocate for Kendrick Perkins who did not get a spot on either the first or second team, despite receiving a first place vote. “I thought Perk should have been on one of those teams,” Rondo said.
A couple of other highlights from Rondo:
On gaining weight: He said that he weighs 179.2 pounds, up from 163 when he entered the league, which he attributes to growing up, working out with trainer Bryan Doo and eating healthy. Rondo said he spent more time in the weight room last summer than he has in the past. Rondo said that the trainers have told him he’s quicker than he was last year, but he doesn’t really believe it.
On the quickest players in the league: “Besides myself?” he asked. “Derrick Rose, T.J. Ford and Tony Parker. Oh, Devin Harris. He might be the quickest with the ball.”
On the place he got booed the most in college: “Kentucky.” Wait, you mean where you played in college? “Yup. Tough crowd. I guess I just played bad.”
On his game: “I haven’t shot the ball well. I’m still getting rebounds, still getting assists. I’m just missing shots. They’re the same shots I took in the first five games.”
|Lee warming up, not expected to play||05.06.09 at 6:02 pm ET|
Wearing a face mask to guard his fractured sinus, Magic guard Courtney Lee was shooting around prior to Game 2. It had been uncertain if Lee would travel to Boston. He is not expected to play on Wednesday night.
|Garnett, Rondo receive All-Defensive honors||05.06.09 at 2:22 pm ET|
Celtics forward Kevin Garnett was named to the NBA All-Defensive First Team for the 2008-09 season. The former Defensive Player of the Year received 35 votes (13 First Team).
Rajon Rondo was named to the All-Defensive Second Team with 23 votes (4 First Team). Kendrick Perkins received four votes, including one First Team bid. Dwight Howard was the leading vote-getter.
2008-09 NBA ALL-DEFENSIVE FIRST TEAM
Dwight Howard, Orlando
Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers
LeBron James, Cleveland
Chris Paul, New Orleans
Kevin Garnett, Boston
2008-09 NBA ALL-DEFENSIVE SECOND TEAM
Tim Duncan, San Antonio
Dwyane Wade, Miami
Rajon Rondo, Boston
Shane Battier, Houston
Ron Artest, Houston