Archive: May, 2012
The 76ers have their hands full with the Celtics Big Three, but they also realize that they can’t fall asleep on Ray Allen in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Celtics at the Wells Fargo Center.
Yes, Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo and Paul Pierce combined for 74 points in Wednesday’s 107-91 win over the Sixers that gave the Celtics a 2-1 series lead in this best-of-seven matchup.
There were any number of things that happened in the Celtics’ Game 3 victory over the Sixers Wednesday at Wells Fargo Center that can’t be repeated again in Friday’s Game 4 if the Sixers are going to send the series back to Boston tied up heading into Game 5.
For starters, if a team finishes with 107 points – Boston’s total in its 16-point win in Game 3 – it has to be the Sixers and not the Celtics. The Sixer didn’t allow more than 92 points in any of their previous seven games, with their opponents averaging 82.3 over that span.
The Celtics dominated the 76ers, 107-91, in Game 3 to take a 2-1 lead in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The Inquirer's John Mitchell and the Boston Globe's Dan Shaughnessy report from the Wells Fargo Center.
The 76ers have to feel good, not only about splitting the first two games of their Eastern Conference semifinal at Boston, but doing it without their leading scorer having a breakout game.
Lou Williams, second in the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year voting, who led the Sixers with a 14.9 regular season scoring average, has only averaged 8.5 points per game in the first two against the Celtics. Williams is shooting 7 for 24 in the two games.
“The first game they did a good job of trying to get the ball out of my hands,” Williams said following this morning’s shootaround in preparation for Game 3 tonight at the Wells Fargo Center. “The second game they played me honest and I still wasn’t able to get over the hump so hopefully tonight they play me honest in our building and I can have better success.”
During the first two games of the Eastern Conference semifinal against the 76ers, Boston Celtics forward-center Kevin Garnett, who turns 36 on May 19, has looked like the KG of old.
Garnett doesn’t log the minutes he once did in his younger days, but in the two games he is averaging 22 points and 11.5 rebounds.
After exploding for 29 points and 11 rebounds in the Celtics Game 1 win, Garnett scored 15 points while adding 12 rebounds in Game 2. More telling, he only took 12 shots in the Sixers 92-91 win in Game 2, making seven.
The one constant in the 76ers Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Boston Celtics is that there has been no answer for Kevin Garnett.
On a night that began with Garnett picking up two first quarter fouls, he stayed out of foul trouble the rest of the way and torched the Sixers in helping the Celtics take a 2-1 lead in this best-of-seven series.
Garnett finished with 27 points and 13 rebounds and he shot 12 for 17 from the field in Wednesday’s 107-91 win at the Wells Fargo Center.
Today’s game with the Celtics is gigantic for the Sixers in terms of taking total control of this series against a battered, bruised and frayed Boston team.
Sixers fans shouldn’t buy into the hype that the rest of the nation is about this series – the Sixers can definitely win it and move on to the Eastern Conference finals against, dare we say, uh, Indiana.
Despite the close nature of the last two games in Boston, it’s evident that the Sixers basically lost Game 1 more than the Celtics won it. In short, they should be playing with a commanding 2-0 lead.