By Matt Hafele
The Celtics finally returned to the Garden last night to face the new-look Cavaliers. Coming into the game I thought it would be close but also thought the Celtics would pull it out. The Celts started out great and even though Pierce struggled all night, Garnett and Ray were there to carry the load with 18 and 22 points respectively.
Rondo also played a big role, and although he only had 8 points, he added 5 rebounds, 8 assists and 3 steals. Those are the types of games Rondo has to have. Iíd much rather see him end a game with 8 assists instead of 20+ points. Powe and Big Baby were huge off the bench after Perkins got in early foul trouble. The Celtics managed to jump out to an early lead in the first quarter and were able to hold onto it throughout the game.
King James suffered an ďinjuryĒ in the second quarter, but was able to somehow return to the game after halftime. It initially looked like it couldíve been serious, as LeBron was wincing in pain on the sidelines, but Iím thinking there was a lot of acting involved since he was back in the game to start the second half. If he actually hurt himself seriously Iím sure the Cavaliers would have take a little more caution with him.
It was nice to see the Celtics come home fresh and get a big win. Hopefully they can put together a nice little run during the next month and a half before the playoffs to keep that all-important No. 1 seed in the East. They got some help last night as Utah was able to top the Pistons in comeback fashion last night, so Boston upped itís lead to three games (four in the loss column) over the Pistons for the Eastís top spot.
|Delonte doesnít look like himself without Celtic green|
Delonte West and Wally Szczerbiak returned to Boston after being involved in the trade that sent them to Cleveland (from Seattle) before the deadline. Delonte put forth a nice effort against his former team, and seems to fit in nicely with the Cavs.
Wally struggled from the field all night and it was almost comical watching him trying to run through screens to keep up with Ray Allen. Wally had an off shooting night but I think heíll work out in Cleveland. He should be able to get plenty of open shots while he is on the court with LeBron.
A couple of milestones were reached during the Cleveland game as well. First LeBron reached the 10,000 point plateau, and then Garnett pulled down the 11,000th rebound of his NBA career. Both are impressive (especially seeing as how LeBron is only 23) and attributable to the skills and effort they display every time they step foot on the court. If KG hadnít been out for a month Iíd say he would be right in the MVP race with LeBron.
Scalabrine thought of the day
Have you ever wondered if Scal is the same way off the court as he is on it? I was thinking during last nightís game, while he was on one of his high-five rampages, if he brings the same charismatic gratitude home with him. When his kid is at home learning how to walk, do you think he is constantly clapping and waving a towel while shouting words of encouragement? If his wife comes home from the grocery store is he the first one out of the house to congratulate her as she steps out of the car? Iím willing to bet that these types of Scalabrine moments happen everyday. Sure, Scal canít pull down a rebound in 15 minutes of action or fix the water heater thatís been acting up lately, but who else is going to be there rooting you on every step of the way, no matter the situation? Thatís right, the one and only Brian Scalabrine. And how does he do it, you ask? One word: Yoga.