Friday, October 31, 2014
Brad Stevens wants effort, and great execution from his guys. Stevens is big on saying "OUR" team, and "OUR" system. After Boston's game, and win of the season. The Celtics nailed all of Brad's points, but can it last all year?
(1) Sprint to set OUR defense.
(2) Execute OUR defense with multiple efforts to completion.
(3) Be TOUGH with the ball.
(4) Play unselfishly with pace and space to get great shots.
(5) Dominate effort plays.
Boston's three-headed monster defensively on the perimeter started the season off well with the sprinting, and effort on the defensive end. Rondo's defense wasn't questionable. Bradley, and Smart put great pressure on the ball. The trio hope to build off of their collective success moving forward. Sometimes you need some players to lead by example, and to lead with the coaches voice.
Everything that Stevens stands for his based on the defensive end. The Celtics won a banner behind defense, and at the end of the day it wins championships. I think you can control your defensive schemes more in the NBA today, than you can offensive schemes. So many players score in isolation, and coaches like Mike Brown expect their scoring stars to bail out the offense.
Stevens has the right attitude, and hopefully it translates now, and int the future. So far it seems to be working with the young squad.
Thursday, October 30, 2014
KG's third return to Boston came with little tribute. KG looked pretty solid out there, but the Celtics controlled the game from the second quarter and on. KG witnessed Gino time, and you know he wanted to look up and laugh at the big screen.
“Listen, I was so upset I didn’t even get the really, really deep Gino in my system,” Garnett said. “My low moment for the night, you know what I mean? Gino is a big part of me and I didn’t even get to celebrate it. I’m still a huge Gino fan.”
Garnett had a lot of nice things to say about Stevens, Smart, and the city of Boston.
"It’s always special coming back here into Beantown," Garnett said. "It's very hard to focus, had to go to yoga this morning ... get my meditation right, stay level. There's a lot of energy in the building. It's always good to come back here. I love Beantown. I’m always bleeding green, y'all know what it is."
Garnett said of Stevens: "[Boston's] schemes were very clever. They do unorthodox things, like sticking a big in the corner, having the bigs roll, put lot of pressure on the smalls. My hat goes off to Coach Stevens and his schemes."
And on rookie Marcus Smart: "The kid is very impressive. This is my first time seeing him live, playing against him and stuff. He and Rondo and Avery [Bradley], that’s going to be a [good unit]. I can’t wait to watch some of the games. They played great tonight. They seemed to have a nice chemistry together. I hope they can be consistent with that."
KG was also kind to his old running mate Rodno, "Rondo was classic. I don’t know what he said, he was 89, 83 percent? That’s a hell of an 82 percent." KG said of Rondo. It was always nice knowing that KG had Rondo's back no matter what. They both shared a great bond that I will never forget.
It was an emotional night for the city of Cleveland, and for the homegrown star. The night didn't end as planned, but it's just one game in a long 82 game season. James finished with 17 points on 5-of-15 shooting. He also committed eight turnovers and never looked comfortable in his return. He pressed all night, and the chemistry was off, but the Cavs have time to fix things.
Carmelo Anthony scored 25 points and buried a baseline jump shot with James in his face with 25 seconds left to give the Knicks a 92-87 lead.
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
Life, is certainly, full of surprises, and that keeps thinking interesting. Rondo's fast recovery was a surprise, and the greatest surprise was an opening night return from Rondo. The season has started off on the right foot, and Rondo's expected best season every has started off nicely. Rajon Rondo threw a turnover on the first possession, and I was nervous for him after that. He, and the Celtics calmed down, and they had the Nets up against the wall.
The pace of the game was Rondo, and the Celtics just played old school basketball putting up 121 points, and scoring 3 30 plus point quarters in a row. One thing that caught my eye was the Rondo and Zeller connection in the second quarter. It's what Rondo needs. Rondo led the balance attack behind Olynyk's (19 points, six rebounds), Jeff Green (17 points, six rebounds), Jared Sullinger (13 points), Avery Bradley (13 points), Evan Turner (10 points, six rebounds, five assists), Marcus Smart (10 points) and Marcus Thornton (10 points).
The Celtics are ranked as one of the worst teams in the game, but they came out looking like a real team, after their first win of the season. Rondo has started his career year out the right way, and I'm thankful we have 81 more to go.
Kelly led all Celtics with 19 points on 8-for-14 shooting to go with six rebounds and a pair of assists. Kelly had some banner moments with chippy moments with KG. Kelly seems like a legit big in the NBA, with a great deal of confidence so fart this season.
The Celtics put together a complete team effort in game one of 82 game season. The Celtics needed this first win, because the schedule doesn't get any easier after this game. Avery Bradley finished with 15 points, in 30 minutes.
Rondo, starting the season less than five weeks after surgery on a fractured hand, flirted with his 30th career triple-double. He finished with 13 points, 12 assists and 7 rebounds over 30 minutes. Rondo looked great, and the new minutes pattern that Stevens has set into place makes a great deal of sense. Checkout Rondo's brilliant performance.
Rajon Rondo returned after missing every preseason game, and after missing most of camp. Rondo looked like a guy who hasn't missed a beat. Rondo had a near triple=double in 30 minutes of work. Rondo finished with 13 points, 12 assists, and 7 rebounds in the Celtics 121-105 win over the Nets. It was a balanced attack all the way for Boston. Kelly Olynyk led the way with 19 points, in 29 minutes. Boston's bench scored 44 points with Smart, Turner, and Thornton scoring 10 points apiece.
The Celtics looked epic in game 1 of the season. They look like a legit playoff team, and Rondo is simply why. Rondo only played 30 minutes, but with some more time on the floor. Rondo would have easily had a triple-double. Jeff Green had a nice line with 17 points, 6 rebounds, and 3 assists. The Celtics looked like a team, with a great 28 team assists. The Celtics also had 12 turnovers compared to the Nets 20. The Celtics proved that they can play, and I can't wait for more. Stay tuned for more.
Kobe and Dwight go at it, and a superstar is born in New Orleans, and the Lakers take a big hit opening night
The NBA's opening acts Tuesday night didn't disappoint. Anthony Davis seems to be the next big thing, and after his near triple-double, and after an opening night win. The league is a buzz about the big man. Davis and Asik combined for 40 points, 34 rebounds and 14 blocks, and New Orleans beat the Orlando Magic 101-84 on Tuesday. The Rockets should be pretty upset that Dwight, and Aski didn't work. Because the Pelicans might be hard to beat this season if these two continue this. Davis was one block shy of the triple-double, and that's not the normal triple-double in today's NBA. Usually it's dimes, and boards that lead to triple-doubles.
As for Asik's old teammate Dwight Howard. Howard had an issue with a former teammate of his own. Howard grabbed a rebound and Bryant got in his face, trying to stop an outlet pass. Howard threw elbows to clear space, and one may have connected with Bryant's chin. That then led to Howard and Kobe jawing at one another. As you'll see below.
The Lakers lost 108-90, and the Lakers also had a bigger loss when their top choice in this years draft Julius Randle broke his leg. The Lakers said that he broken his tibia. Randle will undergo further evaluation, and the Lakers said they would provide an update on his status Wednesday.
As for the first act of the night. The Spurs, and Mavs put on a show in a 101-100 thriller that saw the champs win by one point. The game showcased two of the best teams in the game. This Dallas team could shock some people. They have a lot of weapons.. So keep an eye out for them.
Rondo was pretty witty, and sly with his first forecast about a possible return opening night. His second response with reporters Tuesday was even better, by my standards at least. If I was gambler.. I would say that Rondo will be out there opening night with Sully, Bradley, Kelly, and Green in the starting lineup. It's only right that Rondo starts the first game of the season. This is his year, regardless of Boston's overall record. Of course winning games, and making the playoffs would be great and ideal. But the reality is that many believe that the Celtics are one of the worst teams in the NBA. Rondo, won't lose any sleep, or any nap times thinking about the critics picks this season.
"When I wake up from my nap, I’ll let [reporters] know. Around 4:30," said Rondo. "If I sleep really really well tonight, and [Wednesday] afternoon with my nap, I’ll let you know how I’m feeling."
Classic Rondo, in my book at least. This is supposed to be Rondo's year,and regardless of ESPN counting Rondo out. Maybe Ainge's belief means more, that's if he's genuine, which I feel he is right now.
"I can't wait to see him play. He just has a lot to prove," Ainge said. "I just see it in him. He's really dying to get out there and play. I'm excited for him."
This season for me is about Rondo, and frankly not about the Celtics record. Of course you can measure Rondo on the record, and that goes along with Rondo this season in some regard. Winning games means Rondo is doing his job, but in all honesty. Rondo doesn't have the talent around him, and this season will be about a lot of moral victories. If Rondo can somehow take this team into the playoffs. Then I think he's the best point guard in the game. How can you argue that?
Quotes are from ESPN Boston
Monday, October 27, 2014
Rondo suffered a left hand injury on Sept. 25 that was thought to be serious enough to where he would miss the start of the season. So, far Rondo at best will miss the first game, or first few games on the 2014-15 season. Rondo has provided some hope for Celtics fans.
"Probably 79 [percent] right now," said Rondo. "That's pretty high. I mean, I feel good. It's just contact is a completely different thing. If I land on it or if I get taken out of the air and have to brace myself, it's still different, so I don’t know yet.”
Brad Stevens said Rondo will check with doctors Tuesday, and I'm sure will find out by game time.
"It's going to be about how he feels," Stevens said. "So if he goes through the next couple days without pain and he feels really good and the doctors give him clearance, he'll be good to go. There's a lot of 'ifs' there. I'd say he's somewhere in the realm of questionable, but all signs have been moving forward."
Saturday, October 25, 2014
Now in his second season as the Celtics coach, the expectations are higher for Brad Stevens. Brad looks more at home, and his confidence on the sideline seems there after the Celtics posted a solid preseason record. Brad Stevens, and the Celtics will be tested early on in November, and with Rondo in question at the start of the season. The road will be rough for Boston.
The Celtics start off the season going up against 13 potential playoff teams. With some championship-caliber opponents like Chicago (twice), Oklahoma City, Cleveland, and San Antonio. Stevens isn't showing any signs of being overwhelmed this season, and with looming schedule. The true test happens when the season tips.
"We're just going to have to play really well," shrugged Stevens. "But we can't get too high or too low. That's going to be huge early on.
"It's something that, ever since we had that full staff meeting in the middle of September, right when we had that, we knew it. We can't get too high or too low. We get a big win, we're going to have to stay the course, because there's a lot of tough ones coming. We get beat in a close game that we play really well in, we gotta analyze it for what it is."
Play really well could be an understatement. November could determine Boston's season in some ways. They play some other teams that dream of winning an NBA title. The Celtics head to Texas for their second, and third game of the year. They'll play the Rockets first, and Dallas to wrap up the mini Texas trip. They follow that trip with last years number one team in the East the Pacers, and another playoff team the Raptors. Boston will need to be in survival mode to keep their heads above water. I think a 4-10 record would be okay for the Celtics. I see Boston beating the Nets opening night, and the 76ers as well. The other two wins may come from the Suns and Memphis.
Brad Stevens will be tested, and Ainge believes that internal belief matters for the Celtics this season.
"It doesn't really matter what I believe in how good the team is or what our weaknesses may be," said Ainge. "It really matters what they believe internally. I think it's really important, not only each game, but during each season, you're going to have ups and downs, you have to find ways to get out of them quickly. You can't have long ruts in games, or you are going to come out on the wrong end of the stick.
"It's the same with the season. You gotta find your way to get out of it and I have all the faith in the world in our coaching staff that they will give them the tools to fight their way out of it. It'll be interesting to see how the players respond. And how they respond together. There's a lot of new faces, and a lot of things we don't know."
Will learn who this team is early in the season, and that will help Rondo and the guys navigate the rest of the way.
This is supposed to be Rondo's career year. It didn't start on the right foot, when Rondo broke his left hand before training camp. Rondo had surgery just 4 weeks ago, but Rondo is determined to get back by the first game.
"He’ll go through the whole practice today," said Stevens. "It’ll just be a matter of, again, how big that pad is. I think that’s the biggest thing moving forward. It’s really about getting hit or not. So, seeing how he feels after this, then we’ve got Saturday and Sunday off, so Monday [or] Tuesday we should know more [about his game availability]."
"It's not my call, that’s the way I look at it," Stevens said Thursday. "When [team trainer] Ed [Lacerte] tells me that someone is ready to play, that’s the go-ahead to let them play. And I wouldn’t rush it. I would not be up here and say, ‘We really need this person on Tuesday night.’ It’s just the way it goes. I’m the son of a doctor, I get it. I realize I don’t know a lot when it comes to medicine. I let them do their job and they do a great job."
Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge said he knows Rondo is anxious, but the team won't hesitate to put him on the floor once he's cleared medically.
"I think he’ll fit right in," Ainge said Thursday. 'I think Rajon is in a great spot, mentally and physically. I can’t wait to see him play. He has a lot to prove; I see it in him. He’s just really dying to get out there and play. I’m excited for him, [that] he’ll probably be able to come back quicker than he thought originally."
I'm glad, like most fans are that Rondo will get out there soon.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
This has been Sully's team, or until Rondo returns. Sully has only begun in my book. Sully needs to remain consistent on the boards, and in the scoring department. If he can rebound 12 boards a game, and if he can score 16-18 a night. That's what you want if your Boston.
Thanks to CLNS for the video!