C’s Late Rally Falls Short

9 03 2009
Boston's Ray Allen goes up for a jump shot over Hedo Turkoglu of the Magic in the Celtics' tough loss versus Orlando yesterday  (AP Photo/Winslow Townson).

Boston's Ray Allen goes up for a jump shot over Hedo Turkoglu of the Magic in the Celtics' tough loss versus Orlando yesterday (AP Photo/Winslow Townson).

By: Brendan Tyman

Until an hour before game time, the Boston Celtics decided to start Stephon Marbury because Rajon Rondo was out after spraining his ankle in the win over Cleveland Friday night. This did not work out as the Celts committed nine turnovers in the first 12 minutes en route to an 86-79 loss at the hands of the Orlando Magic.

After the 1st quarter, the Magic imposed their will and showed that Boston has too many bodies missing. Orlando raced to a 51-33 lead at halftime. The first half was the worst half of basketball the C’s have played since the 2006 – ’07 season.

Add Glen Davis to the list of players out with sprained ankles and knees as he got injured in the third quarter.

Despite the awful play in the first half and losing more players to injury, the Celtics fought their way back into the game in the final frame. They were down 82-79 when Ray Allen (32 points and nine rebounds) missed a trey in the final minute.

Paul Pierce added 16 and Leon Powe finished with 12 points and 7 boards despite fouling out in the final seconds.

The NBA’s version of Superman, Dwight Howard, led the Magic with 18 points, 15 rebounds, and 5 blocks. Hedo Turkoglu (a Celtics killer) tallied 16 and Rashard Lewis dropped 15 points.

News surfaced that Kevin Garnett will not be able to play until Sunday at the earliest. Rondo is hoping to be back in the next game at Miami on Wednesday. It is still unclear when Davis will be in uniform again as he was walking on crutches after yesterday’s defeat.

They cannot afford to keep losing any more of these players coming down the stretch.

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Overcoming Adversity

7 03 2009

Leon Powe and Kendrick Perkins of Boston battle the Cavs' Zydrunas Illgauskas for the loose ball (AP Photo/Winslow Townson).

Leon Powe and Kendrick Perkins of Boston battle the Cavs' Zydrunas Ilgauskas for the loose ball (AP Photo/Winslow Townson).

By: Brendan Tyman

The Boston Celtics were without Kevin Garnet (strained knee), Tony Allen (thumb surgery), and Brian Scalabrine (concussion) to begin the game against the vaunted Cleveland Cavaliers. Yet, they found a way to come away with the 105-94 victory at a rocking TD Banknorth Garden.

This game felt like a playoff atmosphere as the crowd went crazy when LeBron James (5-for-15 from the field) missed a dunk in the opening quarter. There was some chippy play in the second half  with the C’s leading 54-48, when Glen Davis received a flagrant-2 foul on Anderson Varejao. Zydrunas Ilgauskas got a technical foul for going after Davis. James and Ray Allen matched each other’s technicals.

Despite a foul discrepancy (James and the Celts were both 9 of 12 from the line) that would have Phil Jackson crying and the bench being even more thin due to the loss of Davis, Boston increased their lead into double digits on multiple occasions (86-72 and 98-83) in the final frame.

Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 29 points. Leon Powe came up big with a double-double (20 points and 11 rebounds). Perkins and Davis each had 10. Allen finished with 17 points. Rajon Rondo came back from a twisted ankle in the 1st quarter to add 10 assists.

Mo Williams dropped 26 points and James added 21 for Cleveland.

Boston dominated Cleveland in the paint and had 31 assists compared to the Cavs’ 17. The one reason the Cavaliers stayed in this game was the large difference in free throws.

On Sunday, the C’s will go play Dwight Howard and the Orlando Magic. Boston, Cleveland, and Orlando are fighting for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.