|Game 4: Halftime Update||05.10.09 at 9:24 pm ET|
The first half of Game 4 has been dictated by foul trouble. The tone was set early when Glen Davis was benched 46 seconds after the tip with his first personal. By the end of the first half, 29 fouls had been called and 25 free throws were taken.
Paul Pierce (18 points) scored seven straight points in the second quarter to lead the Celtics before being whistled for his third. Rashard Lewis (11 points) is the high scorer for the Magic.
Ray Allen still struggles on the offensive end. He has attempted just four field goals (4 points) and is 0-for-2 from three-point range.
There are two match ups to keep an eye on in the second half — the longtime battle between Pierce and Turkoglu as well as the emerging duel between Perkins (8 points, 9 rebounds) and Howard (9 points, 10 rebounds).
|Game 3: Final Wrap||05.08.09 at 9:58 pm ET|
The Magic were in control the entire night as they defeated the Celtics, 117-96, to take a 2-1 series lead in Orlando. The Celtics got off to a slow start and found themselves down 54-41 at halftime. After cutting the lead to single digits, they failed to take advantage of Dwight Howard’s five fouls. Even with the Magic’s big man on the bench, the Celtics were never able to put together a threatening offensive run. Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 27 points (14-14 FT). Ray Allen shot just 3-for-13 (8 points). Rashard Lewis led all scorers with 28 points. Game 4 will be played on Sunday at the Amway Arena.
|Game 3: Halftime Update||at 8:33 pm ET|
Just as the Magic have a tendency to do, the Celtics fell into the trap of outside shooting in the first half of Game 3. Rather than attack the paint like they have done successfully so many times, the Cs are settling for jumpers. They’re not making them either. The Magic are outshooting the Celtics 56% to 41% from the field, while the Celtics have attempted 11 three-pointers and made just two.
The surprise of the night so far is the performance by Anthony Johnson. The Celtics were expected to gain an advantage with the suspension of Rafer Alston but it’s Johnson who is leading the Magic offensively. He has hit a game high five field goals (5-7 FG, 11 points).
None of the Celtics, on the other hand, have posted in double figures. Rajon Rondo scored a team-high nine points.
Foul trouble will be the key to the second half. Brian Scalabrine already picked up four personals and Glen Davis has been called for three. None of the Magic have more than two fouls. They shot 13-for-16 from the line.
|Magic get backcourt help||at 2:02 pm ET|
The Orlando Magic suffered a blow when starting point guard Rafer Alston was suspended for Game 3 against the Boston Celtics following his actions against Eddie House. But their backcourt will have help, head coach Stan Van Gundy told the media after Friday’s shootaround. Shooting guard Courtney Lee, who has been out of the lineup with a fractured sinus, will be back in the available tonight. He will not start. Lee is averaging 8.4 points per game and shooting 45% FG in his rookie season.
|Game 2: Final Wrap||05.06.09 at 10:38 pm ET|
The Celtics didn’t need Paul Pierce (15 minutes, 4 PF) to take care of the Magic in Game 2. The Cs won, 112-94, in a game that ended with Stephon Marbury, Mikki Moore, Tony Allen, Bill Walker, and Gabe Pruitt on the court. Eddie House led all scorers with 31 points (11/14 FG) in 27 minutes. J.J. Redick was ejected from the game. Check back later for more from both locker rooms on Green Street …
|Game 1: Final Wrap||05.04.09 at 10:34 pm ET|
Despite fighting back from an 18-point halftime deficit, the Celtics efforts fell short. The Magic took Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, 95-90. Paul Pierce led all scorers with 23 points. Dwight Howard (16 points, 22 rebounds) scored just seven points in the second half. More postgame reaction on Green Street from the locker rooms …
|Game 1: Second Quarter Update||at 9:01 pm ET|
There was a glimmer of hope when Stephon Marbury began playing like the Marbury of old. He drove on Dwight Howard, pulled up for jumpers, and scored eight points in nine minutes. That was the only highlight of the second quarter for the Celtics.
With Paul Pierce sidelined by three fouls, the Celtics shut down on offense. They settled for outside jumpers, stopped penetrating, and got lost in the Magic’s passing game. Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo shot a combined 2-for-14 in the first half. Kendrick Perkins shot 1-for-5 as well. Even though their bench contributed (15 points), that could not compensate for their inability to stop the Magic from getting easy shots (52.4% FG).
At halftime … Magic 54, Celtics 36
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