You Don’t Get Extra For Winning By More: Orlando at Boston, Game 1

They can win by 1, they can win by 30, it counts the same. And for a team on the road against the defending champions? I think Orlando will still take it.

  • J.J. Redick was in a position over the past two years to give up on his career. He could get lazy. He could get complacent, bitter, and cranky. But instead, he just worked. And worked. And worked. And tonight? 12 points, 3 of 5 shooting. But that’s not waht counts. Don’t think this was just a bad night by Allen. J.J. Redick played terrific defense on one of the best shooters in the game.
  • The Celtics offense for Ray Allen is pretty much driven by one concept. Run the old cagey son of a gun off fifteen screens, often ending with Davis grabbing and moving, and let him shoot wide open. Redick was slippery and simply never stopped running. He didn’t get annoyed with screens and give up like some of the Bulls did. He just worked his way there and bugged Allen. You can’t stop Allen, but you can annoy him and force him to drive. Which is especially helpful if you have Big Beastly Jesus down low.
  • Rondo just played terribly. Bad turnovers. Bad decisions. Bad shot selection. I’m pretty sure he listened to the Bad Boys soundtrack on the way to the arena and planned a vacation to the Badlands. The unfathomable ridiculousness of the ‘let it dribble until Alston dives on it’ play should be an indicator that the Celtics comeback was more the product of bizarre circumstances than “veteran savvy.”
  • The popular story will be the inability of the Magic to maintain their composure. I’ve watched a bunch of Magic games and seen them blow a few leads. This was a cruise control situation, not a choke job. The Celtics came back on the Lakers in the Finals last year as a result of concentration, defense, and playmaking. the Celtics came back in this game because Orlando was thinking about victory martinis at Cheesecake Factory.  They quit pushing themselves, quit using their superior athleticism, talent, and skill, and just trusted their hot streak. And you know? It was STILL enough.
  • Get ready for Dwight Howard to have 3 fouls by 8:00 2nd quarter in Game 2.
  • Everyone constantly screams about the Magic not getting Howard the ball more. The Celtics pulled the same approach on Howard the Blazers used on Yao in the two games they held him in check.  Front, double, and flash a perimeter player to the passing lane. If you have the option of throwing over three guys with a man waiting behind him, or throwing it to a wide open guard at the top of the key with an open shot AND the lane?  You pass to the open man. We’ll have to see if the Celtics try and play him more man up after Perkins’ limited success.
  • In Portland-Houston, I knew Portland had no one they could put on Ming. The Celtics have NO ONE they can put on Lewis. They need to somehow meld Gen Davis and Eddie House.
  • Glen Davis continues to play brilliantly. I’ve finally accepted that he just really is that good of a spot up shooter mid-range. Props to the kid for working on developing a niche.
  • Even better might be his ability to absorb a block and still put the ball in. That takes a ton of strength and he’s done it against Tyrus Thomas, Joakim Noah, and Dwight Howard in the last week.
  • If Ray Allen hits a shooting slump, who can the Celtics turn to for a must-need bucket? Pierce is still struggling.
  • He did look much healthier tonight and like he finally got some sleep.
  • Rafer Alston needs to practice that runner religiously. Because he’s going to have opportunities at it. And if he can hit it, it’s going to give Howard lob opportunities.
  • Turkoglu is going to tattoo his name on this series with big shots. Turkish MVP has got Alligator blood.
  • If Stan Van Gundy would stop picking a good player to bury arbitrarily (regular season: Redick, postseason: Gortat), he would have a pretty killer 8 man rotation.
  • If Doc Rivers could coach by doing more than just saying “Play hard!” he might recognize running Marbury and House was killer tonight. Unlikely.
  • If Pietrus shows up in this series? Eddie House is nullified and the Celtics backcourt advantage is mitigated a bit.
  • Well, they lost Game 1 to Chicago in Boston and won. What happens inf they lose Game 2?

Matt Moore

Matt Moore is a Senior NBA Blogger for's Eye on Basketball blog, weekend editor of Pro Basketball Talk on, and co-editor of Voice on the Floor. He lives in Kansas City due to an unbelievably complex set of circumstances and enjoys mid-90's pop rock, long walks on the beach and the novels of Tim Sandlin.