Smack / Mar 11, 2010 / 4:06 am

Hungry Grizzlies Attack in Boston

Rudy Gay, Dime #25

Too old. Too slow. By now it sounds like a recording for the Boston Celtics, but there’s a new problem beginning to surface that may be the real reason why this team is looking like a fake contender. Forget age and speed — these Celtics aren’t as hungry as they were in ’08 and ’09. During last night’s 20-piecing at home at the hands of the Grizzlies, the Celtics looked a lot like the UConn men’s team when they went through the motions before quitting in the Big East Tournament; maybe it’s something in the New England water … Rudy Gay (28 pts, 8 rebs) is exactly the kind of motivated thoroughbred giving Boston problems. The defining play came late in the first half, when Rudy picked off a pass in front of Paul Pierce and went galloping coast-to-coast. Pierce gave up the chase after a couple of steps, and Ray Allen (17 pts, 0-6 3PA) could only offer a feeble swipe at the ball as Rudy blew past them for a hammer dunk. Next possession, Rudy drained a three to push the Memphis lead to 22 going into halftime. The whole night was full of lazy D and careless errors from the Celts, while the Grizzlies out-hustled them on the glass (48-29) and took good shots … During the game, one of the most loyal and optimistic Celtics fans we know e-mailed us this: “Pierce might be close to Michael Finley status. Really banged up and his body isn’t responding like it used to.” … That said, it’s not like the Celtics stink. At 40-23 they’re tied with Atlanta for the third-best record in the East (though ATL swept the season series), and in our latest NBA Hit List Power Ranking, we’ve got Boston hovering around the top 10 … The Pistons are hustling and giving effort — they’re just not very good in the first place. As the Jazz were running away from Detroit in their own gym, announcer Greg Kelser was getting pissed. “They’re dipsy-do-ing, having a great ol’ time, yukking it up. AT YOUR EXPENSE!” Kelser snarled. He was right. Deron Williams (18 pts, 12 asts) was dropping Harlem Globetrotter dimes on the break and the guys on the Utah bench were acting like high school kids as the Jazz dominated the second quarter to pave the way for a double-digit win … During that first-half run, Ronnie Price threw down a sick two-hand dunk over Austin Daye. No matter the circumstances (Price had a head start on a breakaway), it’s never a good look when somebody a foot shorter than you catches you like that … But the highlight of the night came from J.R. Smith. As the Nuggets were trying to put a scrappy Minnesota squad to bed in the fourth quarter, J.R. got behind the defense — while literally everybody on the Wolves was staring at Chauncey Billups (25 pts) with the ball — and caught an alley-oop that he turned into a 360 cram. It technically took a couple more buckets from Nene and a Chauncey three to shut the door, but that dunk stole a lot of Minnesota’s heart … Before that, Denver was getting all they could handle from a team that had Darko in the starting lineup. After like 5 teams in seven years, Minnesota might finally be the right spot for Darko (12 rebs, 6 pts). Kurt Rambis obviously likes him — Rambo gave Darko Kevin Love‘s minutes against Dallas earlier this week because he wanted him to guard Dirk — and there’s no bright media spotlight or pressure to perform on a young small-market team where K-Love and Al Jefferson are expected to carry the front line … Speaking of Dirk, he didn’t have to do much (12 pts, 3-16 FG) to keep Dallas’ win streak going at 13, because they were playing the Nets. That’s about as close to a Big Dance 1-vs-16 matchup as you’re going to get in the NBA, but Jersey was actually right in there until deep into the fourth quarter. Since Dirk was cold, Jason Kidd (20 pts, 9 asts, 4 stls, 5 threes) hit the daggers to seal the win … Other stat lines from Wednesday: Kevin Durant scored 29 points in OKC’s win over the Hornets; Manu Ginobili dropped 28 on the Knicks in a Spurs win; Tyreke Evans posted a triple-double with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists as Sacramento beat Toronto; Dwyane Wade went for 27 points (15-17 FT) and 8 assists as Miami got past the Clippers; and Stephen Jackson posted 24 points, 10 boards and 3 steals to lead the Bobcats past Philly … Did you hear Matt Harpring seething at the fact that Jason Kapono didn’t get a minute of PT in that Sixers game? We know you’ve gotta look out for your brethren, but Harpring sounded like Jimmy Boeheim chastising the media … We’re out like Kapono …

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  • BRUCE

    The Fall of Boston, one and done!

  • That’s What’s Up

    PROTEGE ????????

  • BRUCE

    Kobe-led Lakers is following Boston path. Tony Montana said it best, “We are not hungry anymore.”

  • ToAn

    @BRUCE ..if you are saying that Big Baby is not hungry anymore, then you have no idea what you are talking about. he IS always hungry

  • Coop

    Jerry Sloan doesn’t care about black people

  • b

    boston is only as good as KG’s leg… Memphis beating boston is just Gay… pun intended, no dis Rudy

  • sh!tfaced

    LOL@ToAn… Now we all know why the Celtics added Mike Sweetney on their preseason roster.

  • ToAn

    @sh!tfaced….yeah, the hungriest player in the whole league. he really wants it
    http://i34.tinypic.com/s2elps.jpg

  • mules

    no mention of Thad Young posterizing Tyrus?…filthy

  • Celts Fan

    It’s not even just the old and slower ish either. We’re a jump-shooting team and have no one besides Rondo and TA that really attack the basket, and both aren’t real threats to shoot, so you can sit back and dare them to shoot while trying to stop the drive. I guess Nate too. Our best low post scorer is Rasheed (both he and KG are waaay too quick to shoot 20 footers, but at least Rasheed uses more than one post move. KG only does that fade-away.)

    I’ve been to over 200 games over the past 12 years and last night was the earliest we ever left. Bounced after the 3rd quarter. The window’s closed, the victory lap’s over. We can’t stay with the (contending) younger, athletic teams and just aren’t good enough to beat LA or Cleveland in a 7 game series. The record’s great, til you realize we’re 2-8 against the top 3 in the East and just feasting on lesser teams (who we’ve been really struggling with lately too!) It’s gonna be a bumpy ride the next few years…

  • Celts Fan

    *BUT I’d do it all over again knowing all I know. No complaints, saw this coming a mile away. No less awkward now that it’s hear though…

  • rell

    @Celts Fan
    I keep having to remind myself at least we got on championship because this is getting ridiculous. I was watching the game last night on TV and had to change the channel because I just couldn’t watch it anymore. I can watch a 20 point beating as long as we are trying but now it seems like the Celts are just going through the motion. I didn’t watch the Wizard game in the 2nd and 3rd quarter for the exact same reason. I started watching the game again in the 4th when Boston made the run. Boston started to play defense in the 4th and it look like they were actually trying.

    Boston main problem in their inability to rebound. At halftime last night the Griz out rebounded Boston 28-14. That is horrible. Pierce is also struggling both offensively and defensively. He can’t keep anyone in front of him. Pierce have been outplayed in 2 of the last 3 games. Thornton had 24pts and 11 rebounds against him and Gay had 28 and 8.

    Other teams right now are hoping that Boston is their 1st round opponents. I don’t see us beating the Bucks, Bulls, Heat, Raptors, or Bobcats in the 1st round. If we end of playing the Bucks we have the potential to win no more than 2 games.

  • rell

    * I keep having to remind myself at least we got a championship because this is getting ridiculous.

  • http://Dime Celt4life

    Doc should start the bench,all except rondo and ray! The finger will soon start pointing at Doc. He should shake up the line up for a humbling wake up call!

  • Roman

    Celtics fans didn’t see this coming. You guys talk so much smack, and think your team can dominate anyone in the league. Young guns exposing these old mofo’s- I love it.

  • Roman

    Celtics fans didn’t see this coming. You guys talk so much smack, and think your team can dominate anyone in the league. Young guns exposing these old mofo’s- I love it. And you guys are cool with one championship. One and done i guess is cool now.

  • http://dime eyes

    It’s not Doc. Blame the GM. The pick up of the Big 3 was short term success. Now you have to actually do some work. Doc deserves a lot of credit for all he’s accomplished with this team.

    The acquisition of Marquis Daniels,Rasheed Wallace, & Michael Finley. Did nothing to solve the glaring problems. Also youth was needed to balance out this team. Again Nate Robinson is a scorer. I know at his size he should be a Point Guard because of his liability. Yet he’s still a scorer. He won’t magically turn into a PG. Like Rasheed wont all of sudden get in shape. Sugar been the same since he got here. Rondo plays way to many minutes a la Nash. He needs a rest. It was fun while it lasted.

    There are so many players for cheap that could help this team it’s sad. Yet this team is so vet dominated it wont work. YOu need some legs to keep the old ones fresh. It goes to show you how important Garnett’s Defensive presence & health were to this team. Both the Magic & Celts aren’t as good as last year. It’s sad when age catches up to you. Any player you draft that can’t contribute is a waste for the most part. Gabe Pruitt/JR Giddens/Bill Walker/Tony Allen/ That could have been a legit second unit had the scout dept done their job. A coach has to play with his cards.

    Paul Pierce/KG/ & Ray need to go to Phx or Den to experience the fountain of youth. If not it’s over. Even work out with Grover. They have the skills to play at least 2 more. Their bodies are singing a different tune. Training staffs are the most overlooked. Yet most important in health of players & teams. If players miss time you can’t win. Plain & simple.

  • LakeShow84

    SMART Celtics fans know whats up.. like i said that team traded they soul and got what they wanted.. a Championship..

    As far as actually LASTING?? a dynasty maybe?? Everyone was thrown on this team at once while they were all over 30.. And some of the unsung heroes from that championship run were gone the very next year, namely Posey and PJ Brown.. then you lose Powe who was CONTSTANTLY hustlin and its hard for those 3 to adjust.. the SMALL 3 i mentioned handled a lot of the dirty work..

    I will say if KG was healthier that team would still be dangeorus.. KG MADE that D what it was.. he cant put it on his back anymore..

  • http://Dime Celt4life

    Roman that’s 17 chips we have not just one. I agree we should not have traded or released such young talent. Boston is not known for grooming (IE- Billups, JJ,)and we get rid of great talent. Still the foundation is strong and we will bounce back!
    LOL! The cavs will still win it all though!

  • http://www.sactownroyalty.com Willis

    In other news, Tyreke Evans was stupid last night.

  • Claw

    How is Darko getting KLove minutes? KLove double doubled and had 4 assists AND Darko is going overseas next year. Maybe develop the players you have and that have more talent? Rambis is an idiot. Was smart enought to take the Wolves job because I don’t think the Lakers were handing that team over to him.

    Tyreke’s first triple double, so who will be 2nd place for ROY?

  • rell

    @Roman

    On this board you rarely hear Celtics fans talk smack. The only time you hear Celtics fans talk smack is when all the haters come out and start talking smack about Boston. On dime, you may hear 1 or 2 Celts fan talking smack and that’s it.

    One and done is better than having no championships at all. I am happy that Boston won that championships 2 years ago especially after the Pitino’s year, the playoff drought after Bird retired, and the Reggie Lewis/Len Bias death that suppose to help keep Boston on top after Bird retired. I came a Celtics fan 2 years before Bird retired and the ’06 championship was the 1st one since I became a fan. So yes, 1 and done is cool with me because it is better than none.

    @eyes
    Doc do have to take some blame. It is partial his fault that some of the players Boston drafted didn’t develop. Since the big 3 came, Doc never gave none of the young players(Walker/Pruitt/Giddens) any significant playing time. The games that Pierce and Daniels were out Doc should have given those minutes to Walker and Giddeon. Instead he choice to play Scalabrine and Tony Allen. Bill Walker have already had two 20+ points games with the Knicks. If Walker was given significant minutes with the Celtics he could at least be a better contributer than Scal and Tony Allen.

  • http://Dime Celt4life

    Roman Not Smack just loyal to the team (even when we lose)I’ve also said we should be giving playing time to whom ever is not scal. He’s a great lockeroom guy always seems to make the smart play but he can’t cover one on one which we really need right now. T Allen has been playing his a$$ off need to point that out. Again start the bench and see if we can relight that fire. even in a loosing effort I would like to see any effort!

  • ab_40

    walker pruit and giddens arn’t really talented. doc knows that. be real. and walker is a 3 guard with a 4 player skill set at 6-5. doc likes skill players he’s all athlete and while he has skills he’s not that skilled to get 25 mpg on a veteran laden team.

    Boston. man sheed came and they took they’re all content now like those old detroit teams. yeah we’ll get em in the playoffs. and doc isn’t a yay sayer that believes that. unless the celtics put together a significant run over the next two months I’m not sure if they can ‘switch it on’ in the playoffs.

  • http://Dime Celt4life

    I’ve been a fan since the ML Car days so nobody knows loosing like I know Loosing! We’ve fallen on hard times but not out of it yet.

  • rell

    @Lakeshow84

    How did we sell our soul? Do you think that a nucleus with Rondo, Pierce, Perks, Gomes, Jefferson, West, and Telfair would have got us a championship? We might not even made it to the playoffs. The draft pick we gave to Seattle turned out to be Jeff Green and the draft pick we gave the Wolves turned out to be Nikola Pekovic, Wayne Ellington, and Flynn. It is not like the TWolves is winning and Al Jefferson isn’t injury prone. If we had the opportunity again I would do that trade again in a heartbeat.

  • rell

    @ab_40
    Are you telling me walker shouldn’t be given a opportunity ahead of Scalabrine and Tony Allen? They were give significant minutes when Pierce and Daniels were out this offseason.

  • JH

    Boston has issues…but what team doesn’t? Even the better teams do.

    Cavs – Shaq’s injury & age/Jamison’s Knee/D.West and his legal problems.

    Spurs – Tony Parker’a hand injury/Duncan – still productive but much more vulnerable.

    Orlando – Vince Carter – a step slower/Lack of offensive post presence.

    Lakers – Questionable bench play & a habit of “Kobe Watching”.

    ATL – Lacking a solid PG: Mike Bibby is 2 steps slow, Teague aint there yet, and a SG playing PG only works for brief periods of time.

    Denver – Limited rotation + the wild card that is “JR Smith”.

    Jazz – Boozer & AK47 are always injury concerns & they haven’t had a shot blocking/paint protecting big man for years.

    Dallas – How old are Kidd and the Matrix? but you have to like their new lineup. I wouldn’t be surprised if they steal the #1 seed.

    My point is…there isn’t a perfect NBA team and the talent level is so high that anyone can lose to anyone on any given night…yes, even against the Nets.

  • silky

    anyone watch the washington state-oregon game last night?

    wow!

  • mrgnh

    Damn anyone see Tyreke’s over the backboard and one last night? Now that was outta hand! Dude’s freethrow was a clinical brick though.

  • sh!tfaced

    Celtics fans talking lots of smack? Hell, we even criticize the Celtics ourselves. But yeah, LakeShow kinda got it right, we sold our “soul” for a ‘chip. One and done. It’ll be an interesting next few seasons…

  • sh!tfaced

    @ToAn… Damn. And I thought Sweetney was big as a rookie then…

  • the cynic

    i really enjoy watching the celtics get crushed

  • Roman

    All you Celtics fans dont get your panties in a bunch. I dont care if you have 17 championships, you only got one in this decade. Stop riding on what you did back when Russell was playin. What you dont get also, is that Boston is so called elite, so you should be gunnin’ for a championship every year. But you guys are not cut out for that. Real is real, you guys are old and gettin ran on by the Grizzlies, Bucks, and Nets- damn!!!!!!!!!!! Maybe we wouldn’t come down hard on you if team wasn’t such douchebags. Just shut up and take it like a man.

  • LakeShow84

    Damn Roman lol

    Honestly i want the Celtics to make it back to the Finals.. and it wouldnt be unheard of.. Grit and wisdom can win the day if everyones on the same page.. and if KG gets a little healthier and Pierce holds up his end of the bargain (dude been talk ever since the Finals MVP) then the Celtics could surprise us.. They CAN beat Cleveland, we’ve seen that.. if they get matched up with a young stud up and down team like Atlanta its a wrap, well most likely.. like i said if they stretch it to 7 you never know.. gimme 4-5 experienced, grissled, veterans over the young studs in a game 7 all day..

    @ Rell

    You broke the bank for a old superstar.. and you did it on a fluke deal.. just sayin..

    And dont even say it wasnt a fluke deal.. Boston got a chip out of it, has Minnesota even SNIFFED the playoffs??

    I keep hearing stuff about this Al Jefferson foo..

  • LakeShow84

    You guys never know..

    Playoffs is about matchups.. If KG can get a WEEBIT healthier and Pierce can back up his yak (dude been ALL TALK since his Finals MVP) then you never know.. Playoffs is all about matchups.. Boston CAN beat Cleveland with what they have.. they just got ambushed with that lineup last time around.. They CAN beat Orlando, VC is unpredictable in the playoffs.. if they get hot you never know.. Especially with all the veteran heads on that squad.. they know when money time is.. it remains to be seen if they waiting to “turn it on”..

  • LakeShow84

    In other words.. PLEASE MAKE IT BACK CELTICS..

    I WANT KG AND PIERCES ASS ON A PLATTER.. WITH A SIDE OF RIVERS AND RONDO..

    But who knows with THE LakeShow.. Dallas is looking good.. Denver or Dallas will go 7 no doubt..

  • sh!tfaced

    Our team maybe douchebags, but the fans aren’t. Unlike the Lakers, their fans are such douchebags like Roman. Take it like a man. LOL. No offense, LakeShow…

  • Roman

    @sh!tfaced: I’ll talk to you on Sunday after Lebron and Comp, tap that .ss