After Monday night’s loss to the Bulls in Chicago, the Boston Celtics (23-52) were officially eliminated from the postseason.
Nobody expected the Celtics to make the postseason since they are undergoing a transition and their best player, Rajon Rondo, was out for half of the season. Rondo has also been unable to play in back-to-back games because he is resting his surgically repaired knee. Like their defeat on Monday night, the Celtics remain competitive until the fourth quarter when they lack execution on both ends of the court with young players. The Celtics are also without a scorer they can isolate or run pick-and-rolls in the final stretch.
Rondo made his debut as the color commentator on Monday. While Rondo was quiet at times early in the game, he did provide some interesting comments. Rondo noted that Bulls guard “Kirk Hinrich is one of the most physical guards in the NBA.” Hinrich is a solid two-way player who can defend on-the-ball while shooting from the outside. Over his 10-year career, Hinrich shoots at nearly a 38% clip from beyond the three-point line. Cedric Maxwell debated this notion when he sat with CSNNE’s Mike Gorman in the second half. Maxwell said there are more talented defensive guards in the NBA such as the Miami Heat’s Dwayne Wade. Rondo also told a story about how he and Bulls center Joakim Noah came to an understanding after spending a decade with the two competing against each other through AAU, college basketball, and in the NBA. Both players played in the same conference (SEC) in college with Rondo at Kentucky and Noah playing for Florida. They are both highly competitive who can produce baskets for themselves and their teammates. The Celtics point guard also said that one of Brad Stevens’ plays worked because the Bulls love to tag cutters. This is all part of Rondo’s knowledge and recognition through game film.
Here are the tweets:
— Boston Celtics (@celtics) April 2, 2014
This is a tweet from the Celtics with a picture of Brad Stevens and a few Celtics players with Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia and designated hitter David Ortiz. The Celtics and Red Sox both visited the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Tuesday. Players such as Brandon Bass, Jerryd Bayless, and Kris Humphries were all in the picture with a wounded warrior. Both teams are in the Beltway region as Celtics took on the Washington Wizards on Wednesday night and the Red Sox are in the midst of their opening series against the Baltimore Orioles. The Red Sox also visited the White House on Tuesday morning to celebrate their 2013 World Series championship.
In words of brad Stevens Dayton has to hit “singles not home runs” chip away at the lead.
— Jared Sullinger (@Jared_Sully0) March 29, 2014
It’s nice to know that Celtics players are not tuning out Stevens and the coaching staff as the 2013-’14 season is coming to a close. The Celtics have played hard throughout this tough season. Sullinger tweeted a message from Stevens as he was watching the Dayton-Florida game on Saturday evening. The top overall seed Florida advanced with a 62-52 win, but Sullinger was rooting for Dayton since Sullinger was raised in Ohio. The Celtics forward played for Ohio State, who coincidentally was upset by Dayton in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
In a side note: On March 28th, the Celtics observed a moment of silence for the Boston Fire Department before their game against the Toronto Raptors. Then in last Sunday’s loss to the Bulls, the Celtics wore black warm-up shirts to honor the Boston firefighters. My prayers go out to the families of Lieutenant Edward J. Walsh and Michael R. Kennedy as well as all of the Boston firefighters who risk their lives everyday.