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Boston coming to town

Essentials

  • Teams: Boston Celtics (6-4) at Detroit Pistons (1-9)
  • Date: November 18, 2012
  • Time: 7:30 p.m.
  • Television: FSD

What to look for

After losing at home Friday night to the Orlando Magic, the Detroit Pistons will try to shake off the defeat and add a second victory to their win column when they take on a Boston Celtics team tonight that is sure to be somewhat fatigued after playing against the Toronto Raptors at home yesterday.

The tricky thing about back-to-backs in the NBA is that they can often result in scheduling losses because they force head coaches to go deep into their benches to buy some time for the starters to rest during the course of the games in order to have some gas left in the tank to perform to their usual standards late in the fourth quarter.

Doc Rivers on the other hand seems to have an entirely different philosophy this season with respect to the rest he’s afforded to his big guns.

On the back end of back-to-backs, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Rajon Rondo are actually playing more minutes than what they typically average during the season. This could be attributed to the fact that Rivers is still trying to figure out his rotation (which he is), but also given that it’s a little early in the season he can get away with it for now.

The Celtics have won two out of their three games when playing on consecutive nights, and their opponents have been at Washington (win), at Milwaukee (win) and at Brooklyn (loss). Thus, the Pistons should probably expect to see Boston regulars tonight, although with a slight twist.

The departure of Ray Allen from the Boston Celtics was seen as a betrayal, but also was going to benefit them a little — according to Ainge and Rivers — because they now had younger guys playing shooting guard that didn’t need to always have plays called for them. That made sense in theory, but when looking at the Celtics’ offense this year, it looks a little different. The emphasis for ball movement is still there, and Rondo does an exceptional job of directing traffic and finding players, but there is less misdirection involved; and the offense looks a little more simplistic.

Consequently, there are times where it looks quite plain and less sophisticated in comparison to last season, and thus one would be tempted to say it’s worse, but it’s actually the contrary. Their offensive efficiency has improved and so has their field goal percentage. The adjustment has been a slight one, but one that should be obvious: Rondo utilizing the ball just a bit less, while Garnett and Pierce are using it a bit more.

The end result is that they are getting more opportunities to create offense either for themselves or for teammates; whether it be in the pick-and-roll, on the low block or simply in quick isolation plays.

On defense, the Celtics are nowhere near their level of effectiveness from seasons past, which could be attributed to the fact that Rivers is still mixing and matching his rotation. But there is another factor at play here: Garnett isn’t the same guy.

By the time the postseason rolls around and there is more rest time, perhaps then KG will look like a defensive beast, but asking him to do so for 82 regular season games has now become a thing of the past.

The Celtics like to be aggressive on defense and get into the face of players with the ball, and once the ball goes to the wing, they tilt their entire defense towards the ball-handler to clog all driving lanes. When properly executed, it looks like a zone defense.

There are three ways to beat this: the first one involves having either Kobe Bryant or Carmelo Anthony on your team, because they can take one dribble and elevate over the defender for a jump shot, the second one requires a movement creating action like a hard dribble towards the defense or pick-and-roll and then passing the ball to force the defense to rotate until it reaches the open man camped out on the weak side or the last one, a pinpoint cross-court pass from the strong side to the weak side that flusters the defense.

The Pistons do not have great wing passers, nor do they have Melo or Kobe, so their best bet is to go towards the defense and then share the ball on the perimeter for an open shot or even better, go right at Kevin Garnett. Indeed, the Big Ticket now has trouble closing out and recovering on mobile stretch big men; thus he can be attacked off the dribble — paging Dr. Monroe — to get inside the paint where Boston lacks shot blockers and allows opponents to convert 67.8 percent of their shots at the rim (26th in the NBA).

The Pistons will have their hands full tonight, but it’s important that they try and take advantage of a team that has not yet set its rotation and that is also vulnerable early on in the season defensively as well as on their backboards.

Read about the Celtics

Celtics Hub.

36 Comments

  • Nov 18, 20126:22 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    excited!!!!!

  • Nov 18, 20126:36 pm
    by gmehl

    Reply

    Just a thought but what do you guys think of a Calderon for Maggette swap?? I mentioned this earlier in the off-season but most people shot me down when i brought it up. Both guys are on expiring 10mil deals so it would be a semi lateral move in a sense but i feel for us having Calderon to show Knight the finer arts of playing PG could be worth a look at. Calderon has had a 16 assist game and an 18 assist game today. I will admit that i don’t know how Maggette would fit in for Toronto but i thought it was just worth a mention. If Stuckey can get back to his normal self then Maggette does become irrelevant because of there similar styles. Thoughts??

    • Nov 18, 20127:02 pm
      by J.M. Poulard

      Reply

      I highly doubt Colangelo makes such a move, because he seems to think that he can get something big package return with Calderon. He’s been in trade discussions for past two seasons roughly but never moved. I’m convinced Colangelo believes he can get a borderline great perimeter player for Jose.

  • Nov 18, 20126:41 pm
    by FUCK FRANK'S PROCESS

    Reply

    Hey what do you guys think about getting ALEC BURKS. according to hoopshype there is a ‘source’ saying the jazz are making him available. I think it would take Daye and middleton or a 2nd round pick.
     

    • Nov 18, 20127:37 pm
      by Bullshit Trade Police

      Reply

      I’m gonna have to issue you a citation.

    • Nov 18, 201210:15 pm
      by domnick

      Reply

      alec burks for daye seems good

      • Nov 18, 201210:19 pm
        by Patrick Hayes

        Reply

        It certainly doesn’t seem good for Utah. Burks was a lottery pick just last year. He was way, way more value than Daye right now.

  • Nov 18, 20126:41 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    why? So Frank can play Calderon more minutes than Knight based on his merit system

    • Nov 18, 20126:50 pm
      by gmehl

      Reply

      Hey there are a lot of people out there that think Knight might not be the answer at PG so i thought it was worth a mention. Having Calderon show Knight the ropes (properly) for just this season until he expires could be just what Knight needs.

      • Nov 18, 20127:00 pm
        by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

        Reply

        we need to down size when it comes to vets taking over given minutes over the youth of this team…

        Maggette takes minutes from English and Middleton

        Prince takes minutes from Jonas

        Maxiell takes minutes from Drummond 

  • Nov 18, 20127:13 pm
    by Delray313

    Reply

    The problem is the pieces in place dont fit right bynum stuckey maggette the same jj max both are just ok nothing special. tay should be on the spurs or lakers. drummond needs to start so he can get use to frontline talent because he will be a beast for years to come. we do need a better back up pg to help knight because bynum sucks for real dribble dribble shoot miss. Stuckey should have a consistent jumpshot by now but no.

  • Nov 18, 20127:22 pm
    by frankie d

    Reply

    you can tell that frank has borrowed some of his offense from the year he spent with the celts.  
    like the celts they run their pick and roll, most of the time, it seems, from the wing, instead of from the top of the key, the way many teams do.  personally, i don’t think it works for the pistons because they don’t have a guard who can make quick decisions on the pick and roll, so the threat of making that very fast, dangerous pass to the dive man, from the wing, is just not there most times.  so what usually happens is that knight or bynum end up ignoring the dive man and tossing the ball cross-court for the open 3.  and since the pistons don’t really have a dangerous 3 point shooter in the line-up, a pick and roll that results in a hurried pass for a long jump shot is something just about any defense will be glad to give the pistons.
    i will admit, however, that knight appears to be looking much better on the pick and roll, actually making the nice, easy pass to the dive man, or at least looking for him and causing the defense to account for him.  the last few years, defenses literally ignored the pistons’ dive man on the pick and roll because they knew that none of the pistons’ guards could or would ever make that pass.  they’d just double the guard and jam the play, not worry about ben wallace or kwame brown or any of the big guys who might set the pick.
    its a joke, but tracey mcgrady is the only guy the pistons have had since chauncey who had a clue about what to do.  that is why his ability to efficiently run that simple play stood out so much.
    knight does seem to be getting better at it, slowly but surely.  i hope he continues his progress.  he seems to have the making of a really good pick and roll guard, he just needs more reps and probably a bit of fine-tuning  by the coaching staff. 

  • Nov 18, 20127:56 pm
    by FireCoachL

    Reply

    Celts 6 point lead. Can’t stand the sight of coach L. Here comes Bynum..

  • Nov 18, 20128:02 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    the Celtics commentators are hilarious 

    • Nov 18, 20128:48 pm
      by Stuckey and Whoever

      Reply

      If you dont listen to Blahahaha your not a fan. 

  • Nov 18, 20128:12 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    competing at the cost of not developing our future talent is gonna haunt us this year

  • Nov 18, 20128:19 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    the more Drummond gets it in the post the more he will learn to attack that rim quick

  • Nov 18, 20128:20 pm
    by D_S_V

    Reply

    Hey I was wondering if anyone could tell me what’s the best way to buy lower level tickets at the Palace for cheap? Stubhub seemed to have some decent prices, but was wondering if I’m missing something.

  • Nov 18, 20128:23 pm
    by Corey

    Reply

    Stuckey is looking useful on the 2nd unit. Having another ball handler out there instead of just Bynum helps. Short on 3 pt shooting with that lineup, though. Maybe they should bench Bynum for english or Middleton. 

    • Nov 18, 20128:53 pm
      by Stuckey and Whoever

      Reply

      Stuckey can be a James Hardin of this team if they use him right.  Im not hating how they are using him, and slowly they are letting Drummond stay in longer. They need to let him play with Monroe more, cause that is the biggest issue with the Front court.

  • Nov 18, 20128:37 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    Knight just tries to hard…. its not a lack of skill or ability he just tries way too hard to be special

    • Nov 18, 20128:51 pm
      by Stuckey and Whoever

      Reply

      Knight needs to be a poor mans Rondo, but he already has 4 turnovers.  I like how coach pulled him on his last one right as he was yelling at the ref.  Bynum, your turn!

  • Nov 18, 20128:59 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    Drummond played really Good defense on KG… that surprised me

  • Nov 18, 20129:12 pm
    by Corey

    Reply

    Maxiel is rocking… I just hope JoD remembers the 3 years he was out of shape because he wasn’t in a contract year.

     

    • Nov 18, 20129:16 pm
      by gmehl

      Reply

      Hey even a monkey learns after its first couple of mistakes

  • Nov 18, 20129:18 pm
    by gmehl

    Reply

    Hey is anyone else thinking how we are going to manage to lose this one?? We are up 10 with 3 minutes to go in the 3rd and dominating. This is when Monroe needs to go give me the ball and everyone else get the f**k out the way.

  • Nov 18, 20129:22 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    third straight game Drummond has done that

  • Nov 18, 20129:45 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    Monroe is such a beast

  • Nov 18, 20129:49 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    when teams arent making shoots we are a dominate team

  • Nov 18, 20129:51 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    PUT DRUMMOND IN! Good Win

  • Nov 18, 20129:54 pm
    by acr

    Reply

    Nice win.

  • Nov 18, 201210:06 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    its crazy this is kind of a false win,

  • Nov 18, 201210:10 pm
    by EMBRACE THE PROCESS

    Reply

    rondo generating garbage time assist

  • Nov 18, 201210:21 pm
    by domnick

    Reply

    good win… i hope we can win the next game! lets start some streak!

  • Nov 19, 20126:39 am
    by sebastian

    Reply

    I must give credit, when due. OUR Pistons balled, last night!
    Stuckey was quicker, more decisive, sharper.
    Singler played great. Finished strong at the hoop. Spread the floor. A straight-up tough game.
    The Moose was loose. Much like Stuckey, more decisive and sharp.
    Maggette played well.
    Maxey trade value has never been higher, after last night’s effort.
    In his only two wins, L. Frank has defeated, two top coaches: Doug Collins and Doc Rivers. I still would like to see more Moose and Dre and where is English. But, I must admit Singler is the only “decision” that is saving Frank, this morning.

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