|Third Quarter Wrap: Celtics vs. Heat||02.03.10 at 10:07 pm ET|
The Celtics led by as many as seven points in the quarter, but every time they began to put some distance between them and Miami, the Heat came right back. With the score tied at 74-74, this game looks like it will go right down to the wire.
Rajon Rondo scored eight of his team-high 20 points in the quarter, while Dwyane Wade matched Rondo with eight of his own.
The action came midway through the quarter after Wade got knocked the floor on a long rebound. The Heat players felt that Kendrick Perkins had fouled Wade and Jermaine O’Neal and Rafer Alston got called for technicals.
Turnovers have once again been a problem for the Celtics. They have 14 after three quarters.
|Preview: Celtics-Heat||at 10:37 am ET|
Taken on its own a Twitter update that reads: Man when it rains it pours!!! Yall find out what I mean soon!!!! could mean just about anything, besides a comical over-use of exclamation points. Taken with Aldridge’s nebulous report that Pierce “may have a broken foot,” suddenly one little Tweet takes on a whole new signifigance. Attempts to blame Williams in particular, and Twitter in general, for causing a firestorm are off the mark.
No doubt someone told Aldridge something at 4:51 p.m., but the fact that the doctor attending to Pierce had not yet examined the medical records, and the fact that the tests were not even completed, should have given him pause and allowed the process to play out as it should have in the first place. There are still many questions regarding Pierce’s health, but until he speaks on the matter, everything should be taken with a huge grain of salt.
CELTICS (30-16, 4-6 last 10)
Points Per Game: 99.1
Points Allowed: 93.7
Differential: +5.6 (3rd)
Offensive Efficiency: 107.5 (13th)
Defensive Efficiency: 101.6 (1st)
Pace: 91.6 (22nd)
Injuries: Marquis Daniels (Thumb)
HEAT (24-24, 4-6 last 10)
Points Per Game: 96.8
Points Allowed: 96.4
Differential: +.4 (15th)
Offensive Efficiency: 106.6 (16th)
Defensive Efficiency: 106.1 (12th)
Pace: 90.7 (28th)
|Preview: Celtics-Heat||01.06.10 at 10:32 am ET|
Paul Pierce has been around for so long that it’s sometimes easy to take him for granted. He popped up on various All-Decade teams, particularly those teams that were put together by careful observers who look more at production than hype. There is no question that his role on a championship team helped his standing, but take a moment to stroll through his career numbers on basketball-reference.com. Pierce has been a model of offensive efficiency and a more complete player than he is usually given credit for.
The Celtics have missed him over the last five games while he dealt with a knee infection following surgery. Would he have been a difference-maker in their losses to the Clippers and Golden State? The guess here is that he probably would have helped them win at least one and probably both, simply by settling things down in the fourth quarter of chaotic games.
Before the team headed for Miami, someone asked Pierce if he thought Eddie House or Ray Allen would make a better team rep in the 3-point contest. Pierce rather nonchalantly suggested that he would make a better candidate and he’s right. The man has been killing it from beyond the arc all season. It’s a minor point in the grand scheme of things, but yet another indication that one of the great players in team history is often criminally overlooked, even in his own town. Read the rest of this entry »
|Sounds of the game… Celtics 112, Heat 108 OT||03.18.09 at 11:52 pm ET|
Everyone assumed Wednesday’s game between the short-handed Celtics and Miami Heat at the Garden would be a showcase of an NBA MVP candidate. And it was.
While Paul Pierce is almost certainly not going to beat out guys named Kobe or LeBron or even the Heat’s Dwayne Wade, who was a late scratch Wednesday with a right hip flexor, the Celtics captain showed exactly why he is still one of the most feared players in the league.
He scored 36 points and hauled in 11 rebounds and, with the help of Rajon Rondo’s 27 points and 10 assists, led the Green to a gutsy 112-108 OT win against Miami.
“It almost came down to that we had Paul and they didn’t have Wade,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. “When Paul was making all the shots, I thought that last shot he took was in too so, it’s a good win for us, right now even when you get what we’re going through is good. I thought a lot of guys, obviously Paul and Rajon, was terrific.”
Pierce looked like the Pierce of 2006-07 when he HAD to be the guy taking all the big shots at the end of games. Like his three-pointer with 2:27 left in regulation to give the Celtics a 96-95 lead. Like his jumper with 1:49 remaining to give the Celtics a 98-97 lead. Like his jumper with 1:23 remaining to give the Celtics a 100-99 lead. Pierce was 6-for-8 in the fourth quarter, scoring 16 of his team’s 25 points
“When he does that, it’s unbelievable,” Kendrick Perkins said in wonder. “He’s hitting shots, crazy shots. I knew they were in trouble how he came out. When he comes out like that, he’s in attack mode. I was like, ‘Somebody is in trouble tonight.’ He came out just feeling it. He carried us tonight, he and Rondo.”
Pierce was more humble.
“We just needed a win any way we can get it, right now at this point, it seems like bodies are going down left and right, to get our spirits back up,” Pierce said. “We know that we are injured, we know that we are losing guys every other day, but just to get back on the winning mindframe, is big for us, especially when you are going into San Antonio in a couple of days later. So, this was a big game for us, hopefully on this road trip, we get a couple of bodies back, if not we continue to grind these games out until these guys get better.”
And the captain isn’t about to let his team’s spirits get down, even after losing Ray Allen to a bum elbow and Leon Powe for two weeks with a banged up right knee.
“They’re up,” Pierce said. “That’s the one great thing about this team. We’ve never been down, we’ve never look at one another, point the finger at one another, and we understand that we just have to keep working. We’re a team that doesn’t make excuses, that doesn’t cry over spilled milk. The situation is what it is and we have to go out there and put our hard hats on and our work boots on and continue to work regardless of who’s out there.”
Jermaine O’Neal has seen this all before. He wasn’t surprised by the show Pierce put on against his Heat on Wednesday.