Stop me if you’ve heard this before. Kobe Bryant hit a dagger shot to beat the Boston Celtics at the Garden. What an asshole. Welp, let’s just have a look
It’s only fitting. In a year when Kobe has been maybe the worst basketball player ever, in a game where he started like 0-8, you KNEW he was going to make a big shot before the night was over. Literally zero doubt in my mind. And there it was. The dagger that ended the comeback bid. Again I say, what an asshole.
See, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen this. In fact, you know all that hatred and uneasy feeling you have as a Celtic fan when Lebron comes into your arena? Where do you think that started?
Now in terms of the game, puke city. What a terrible terrible loss for the Celts during a time when they had been playing their best basketball. What a weird night, let’s review.
– MARCUS! MARCUS! MARCUS!
And he didn’t die! This guy is an animal. He brings another level to this team when he’s healthy, and by the looks of things, he’s feeling great. Also, on a night that the Celtics played really bad defense, Smart was the second best defender (106 rating) on the team. I wish he hit that wing three, but he was a team high +6 in just 10 minutes of action. As he continues to get into game shape and gets some minutes under his legs, he is going to be a crucial part of this team’s success moving forward.
– When you play the Lakers, it brings you on a pretty interesting journey. Sometimes, you find yourself openly rooting for your biggest enemy. Sometimes, despite all the heartbreak that he has caused you, you can’t help it. Sometimes, the villain wins. Last night, I openly rooted for Evan Turner. As in truly believed he was going to be the key to pulling this game out. Multiple times I found myself *gulp* wanting him to have the ball in his hands on our most important possessions. I mean, what we saw from him was as if he traded basketball skills with someone else.
8-15 20 points 4 rebounds 8 assists and just 1 turnover. Almost every shot he took was a great decision. He drove to the basket and basically didn’t attempt a shot outside of 10 feet. For all of his faults, he is probably the best Celtic at creating his own shot, and maybe only Isaiah is better at getting to where he wants to go on the basketball court. We’ve experienced Good Evan Turner the last few games, and we all know the tides will turn soon, so enjoy it while it lasts.
– Ho hum, another 20+ point effort from Isaiah. He was efficient (7-13), he moved the ball (7 assists) and he got into the lane (9FTA). If not for his effort in the 3rd quarter, things could have been even more out of hand. I thought Thomas played with great pace, and when he hit that transition three, you knew he was comfortable offensively. If he could just cut down on the turnovers (had a brutal one in the 4th quarter), then we’d be cooking.
– I thought it was interesting to see that the Celtics outscored the Lakers in the paint, despite getting absolutely nothing from their frontline. A final tally of 52-46, this just goes to show how aggressive our guards can be at attacking the rim. No one is saying that this Lakers team has Wilt Chamberlin or anything, but it’s always weird when you have a split like that with no low post presence helping you.
– The world was blessed with James Young’s presence yesterday. Getting minutes over RJ Hunter, which shocked me, Young was pretty effective. Maybe it’s because his jumper gets me super basketball drunk, but I liked what I saw from him in his 7:50 of action. He was aggressive and was looking for his shot, which are things I want from my 20 year old project.
– The Celts did assist on 60% of their makes, so they were sharing the ball. Normally when they play like that things turn out well, the only kryptonite being exactly what we saw last night. Horrific defense.
– Let’s start there. What a pathetic defensive effort, from top to bottom. The best way to explain what we saw is with a common football expression. The Lakers imposed their will on the Celtics. The Celts were reactionary. Normally this team’s defense causes havoc on other teams. We saw the w the 29th ranked offense in the NBA carve them up like they were the Warriors or something. Does 34% 60% 47% 54% look like good defense to you? Me neither. The biggest culprits? The backcourt.
Isaiah Thomas: 120 defensive rating
Avery Bradley: 115 defensive rating
Marcus Smart: 106 defensive rating
Evan Turner: 119 defensive rating
That is nauseating. The Celtics let Jordan Clarkson look like a freaking God. They couldn’t stop Lou Williams! Or Nick Young! Or even D’Angelo Russell! Just a pathetic effort. There was bad communication coming off screens, slow rotations, and the Celtics simply did a poor job of making their presence felt.
Brad Stevens says of his team’s defense tonight, “I just didn’t think they felt us enough.”
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) December 31, 2015
– You know who didn’t have that problem? Julius Randle. Man was it embarrassing to watch the Celts try and defend him. Talk about being an aggressor, Randle was the blueprint. He caused the Celts all kind of problems and it’s a shame because some people wish he would have been a Celtic. None of our big men really had any idea on how to guard him, it was mostly just a try to not foul and hope he misses situation.
– For as long as I live, the Celtics will have rebounding problems against the Los Angeles Lakers. Always. We all remember the struggles of the Big 3 Era, well, they continued even to this day. The Celtics just cannot stop giving up offensive rebounds to this team. Naturally they lost the rebounding battle 52-45, but 13 offensive rebounds is frustrating. Why does this bother me? Because going into last night, the Lakers only avg 42 a game with just 10 offensive rebounds per game. If the Celtics could have just held them to their average, maybe we are having a different discussion.
– Someone will have to explain to me in a game like that, how one would think continuing to shoot that many jumpers is a good idea. The Celtics shot just 43%, and went 7-27 from three. TWENTY SEVEN. Jae took 9 himself, which is wayyyyyyy too many. It was as if the Celts learned too little too late that they could just take it to the basket every time. That third quarter especially.
– Really going to need Sully to step it up. One time OK, but this front line was a joke and he was quiet. Oh and he missed two FTs. I’m not above giving his minutes to KO if things don’t bounce back shortly.
– Obviously the Evan Turner foul on Kobe in the fourth quarter. What are you doing. Right after you made a great play too. God dammit you are the worst.
– For the record, I am firmly with the camp that is a bit disappointed in the Garden last night. Can you respect who Kobe is and what he has done for the game of basketball? Sure. But last night was a little over the top from many of those wearing green and white. I think a lot of it has to do with this weird trend we are seeing today in professional sports, where these legends are going on these farewell tours. I most certainly did not cheer for Jeter/Rivera on their bullshit, and I didn’t even really cheer Kobe last night. To me it boils down to today’s culture of being nice to everyone. I hate the Lakers. HATE. I forever will. Kobe was my generations Jordan, and to get there he had to cause me many sad times. He is our bitter rival, so it annoyed me to see the way people were sucking his dick last night. What’s next, cheering Lebron? Puke.
Yes, that was bad. But, remember, the Nets lost too, so now those two teams are closer together which is what we need at Celts fans. They can right this wrong by taking both against BKN, so don’t get too down on this loss. A large portion of people will probably jump ship, because again the Lakers are awful, but if you are going to drop a game during this stretch, this was one one to do it on. Whatever.