The last four games have been nothing for the Celtics to hold their heads high about. Rajon Rondo’s consistently solid play hasn’t even been enough to rally his aging-but-experienced starters.
Hello again, NESR fans! It’s been a while since I last brought you my insight on the Celtics due to a four-day break between games, a rest one would see as being helpful to this veteran team. Unfortunately, it didn’t make much of a difference as the Celtics lost four straight, dropping games to the Indiana Pacers, Dallas Mavericks, Chicago Bulls, and the Pacers again to fall to 4-7 on the season. So far the major problem has been that their star players have not shown up, particularly Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, who have struggled nearly the entire year. Pierce has scored a total of 30 points in the past three games, and Garnett struggled with only eight points and seven boards against the Bulls Friday. Even when the two scored 21 each against the Pacers last night, Ray Allen and Rajon Rondo went cold and managed only seven and six points, respectively.
As stated in my last piece, this was a very important test to see how the C’s match-up against some of the better teams in the NBA, and unfortunately they failed it abysmally. Whether it was the scoring of only 25 points in the first half against the Pacers, falling apart defensively at the end of the Mavericks’ game, or not playing competitively until the second half versus the Bulls, it’s seemed as if something can go wrong for the Celtics it does. Garnett was vocal about how the team can play better, that they “will get it” and turn this season around. How can they perform better, you may be asking yourselves?
“My frustration starts with the man in the mirror, I definitely gotta do better and I’m going to get better,” Garnett said. Pierce relayed nearly the same message, saying, ” I have to play better for us to win ballgames, and I realize that.” The season is young, so there is plenty of time for the Celtics to turn their game around. Despite the reassurances of KG and the captain, there are still many questions about this team, namely the “Big 3,” moving forward. Do they have the ability to win anymore? Are they past their prime? Are they turning into the other “Big 3″ that the Celtics had, a group that was kept together too long and lost their competitive edge? Does Garnett have anything left in him? Does Pierce? Can Rondo manage to carry the C’s the rest of the season with his teammates appearing to get worse as each game passes? It may not be time to press the panic button quite yet, but fans should start considering it if this continues through the next couple of weeks. Ahead, the Celtics have the Oklahoma City Thunder, Toronto Raptors, and Phoenix Suns. Hopefully the Celtics can turn it around, and turn it around fast.
- John Calabro