Tuesday, February 08, 2005
Celtics (L) vs Bucks (W): 97-121 - The Bubble Bursts. Post-trade let down?
You kind of had to see this one coming and why not tonight. We haven't played well in Milwaukee (lost 9 of last 10) . Add the fact that a popular Celtic player, with the longest tenure on the team, was just traded out of town and seeing this let down coming could have been done by Ray Charles (god rest his soul).
The C's are generally a tight knit group and even though they've gotten better with accepting that there's a business side of basketball decisions, saying goodby to a friend is still never easy and always draining, to some degree. The team was also on a roll of late and this seemed like perfect timing for a letdown that most would have figured was coming, as the C's still lack that everynight consistancy. Mark Blount helped hold true the human epithet that "for a friend, I'm willing to purposely dress stupid", by dawning a headband in honor of his traded friend.
Now I could bore the heck out of you with a bunch of game recap details, but let's face it. If you've seen the score already, you know we got housed. Let's make it less painless and just do an overview, shall we?
Former Celtic Mike James continued to kick the Celtics butts everytime he sees us, regardless of the uniform he's wearing. He was largely unconscious from outside tonight. Came out and hit his first 4 3pters and never looked back from there. He owned the C's tonight and this game stopped being anything more than a "let's evaluate the guys who don't play often now" around mid way through the 3rd.
Ron and Ellen LaFrentz were in attendance for tonight's game and thier son Raef gave them quite a show in the first quarter. He hit 3 3pters and kept the Celtics the game for the only quarter they were really in it. While we're on the topic of parents, Zaza Pachulia's Mom was also in attendance and he had a good game as well. Now that everyone's parents are proud of them, let's move on.....
When Doc Rivers called timeout at 5:55 left in the half and the Cetlics trailing 57-42, this was the picture in front of him:
- The Bucks were out running us.
- PP had missed a dunk.
- Blount had committed a turnover by falling over while dribbling.
- The Celtics sent 2 Bucks players to the line by fouling them on shots that had no earthly chance of ever going in.
Is the picture becoming clearer yet? The Bucks shot over 60% FG and were near perfect at the line 23/25.
We, on the other hand, were completely flat. With the exception of Raef early, our shooters couldn't hit sand if they fell off a camel. No energy and when the camera panned across the Celtics bench just before the half time buzzer, the looks on players faces were varied states of pathetic. Most just stared off into space (hoping to think of something more pleasant probably). The others had looks that, to me read: "What the hell just happened here?".
At the Half: 78-46
Ok, so let's not drag this out. There was really only one thing of importance that really happened in the 2nd half. That would the the Perkins Ejection.
The incident occured at 1:27 left in the 3rd with the Bucks decimating the Celtics 95-59. Desmond Mason went to the rim strong and was greated by an aggressive Kendrick Perkins. The foul was hard, but on the arms, below the elbows. The problem came when a falling DMase grabbed onto on of Perkins arms in an effort to not fall to the floor. He started to steady himself and Perkins took exception to him hanging on him and shook him free. The two chested up but were seperated, along with teammates, without any punches being thrown.
Perkins was assessed a Flagrant 2 and was ejected. Ricky Davis and Desmond Mason also recieved regular techinal fouls.
I cannot lie: Dumb move by Perk,IMO, which was likely out of frustration at the butt whooping we were engaged in. He should have kept his head and will have to learn from this one. He's gonna sit one more game guaranteed, plus I'm guessing the league will slap him with a $5,000 fine for this one.
He's got a slight enforcer mentality, but needs to make his timing better on statements, me thinks. This one will be called by someone in the media tommorrow as "thuggish", "immature", "unsportsmanlike". I have no doubt.
Nobody came to play for any extended period of time tonight and therefore I'm not bothering with a Player of the Game. If you can think of anyone you feel was worthy, feel free to mention them. I'm going to go to sleep and wake up hoping tomorrow is a better day.
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