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Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« on: January 01, 2013, 10:25:37 PM »

Offline FLCeltsFan

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Memphis Grizzlies (19-9) at Boston Celtics (14-16)
Wednesday, January 2, 2013
7:30 PM ET
Regular Season Game #31, Home Game #15
Radio:  WEEI, WMFS
TD Garden

Probable Starting Matchups
Point Guard
Rajon Rondo vs Mike Conley

Shooting Guard
Avery Bradley  vs Tony Allen

Small Forward

Paul Pierce  vs  Rudy Gay   
Power Forward
Kevin Garnett   vs  Zach Randolph   


Jason Collins  vs  Marc Gasol 

Celtics Reserves
Jared Sullinger
Brandon Bass
Jeff Green
Courtney Lee
Jarvis Varnado
Kris Joseph
Leandro Barbosa
Jason Terry

Avery Bradley (shoulders) out
Chris Wilcox (thumb) out
Rajon Rondo (hip/thigh) questionable

Red Claws
Fab Melo

Grizzlies Reserves
Jerryd Bayless
Marreese Speights
Wayne Ellington
Darrell Arthur
Hamed Haddadi
Josh Selby
Tony Wroten

Quincy Pondexter (MCL)  out

Team Connections
Tony Allen played for the Celtics from 2004-10 and was a member of the 2008 NBA Championship team
Darrell Arthur, Josh Selby and Paul Pierce attended the University of Kansas
Jason Collins played for the Grizzlies during the 2007-08 season
Jared Sullinger and Mike Conley both attended Ohio State
Chris Wilcox and Zach Randolph both played for New York during the 2008-09 season
Leandro Barbosa and Jerryd Bayless were teammates in Toronto from 2010-12.

Game Notes
The Celtics welcome old friend Tony Allen and his Grizzlies to the Garden as they try to get back on track after a 1-3 road trip.   The Celtics have lost 3 in a row to Western Conference teams and return home hoping to turn that trend around.  The Celtics have played well at home with a 9-5 record while the Grizzlies are just 6-6 on the road. 

 The big news for the Celtics is that Avery Bradley is expected to make 
his season debut in this game.  Doc has said that if he is ready, he would start him and I'm optimistically putting him in the starting lineup.  That allows Jason Terry to come off the bench where he is more comfortable. 

The Celtics are still trying to find their identity and after 3 terrible losses on the West coast they face a Grizzlies team that is also searching for answers.   Both  teams have lost 3 of their last 4 games.    The Memphis Grizzlies have  turned in three straight efforts of fewer than 90 points for the first time this season.   Both teams have been very inconsistent and so it's anyone's guess how this one will turn out.

Rajon Rondo sat out practice on Tuesday and is questionable for this game and will more than likely be a game time decision.   The Celtics should get a boost from Bradley's return and hopefully his on the ball defense will help the Celtics sagging team defense.   The Celtics are 2 games under .500 and are just half a game ahead of the Sixers for the 8th seed in the East.  They need to find answers and turn their season around soon.   Hopefully it will be in this game. 

Key Matchups 
Kevin Garnett vs Zach Randolph
Jason Collins vs Marc Gasol
The matchup between the Celtics bigs and the Grizzlies bigs will be key in determining the winner.   The Grizzlies are strong where the Celtics are weakest and that is in the middle.  I expect KG to cover Gasol and Collins to cover Randolph because he is so physical that he'd be a tough cover for KG. 

Rajon Rondo vs Mike Conley
 Rondo is listed as questionable with the hip/thigh bruise that he suffered in the Clippers game.  Hopefully he will be able to go.  Conley is a good PG and is averaging 2.44 steals a game and could give the Celtics problems, especially if Rondo can't go.  `

Honorable Mention

Paul Pierce vs Rudy Gay
 Gay is a very good young player and Pierce will need to play him aggressively on the defensive end as well as make him work by being aggressive on the offensive end.   

Keys to the Game
Defense - The team that works hardest on defense will be the team that wins.  The Grizzlies are a good defensive team and will limit the Celtics' easy looks.  The Celtics will need to match their defensive intensity if they want to win this game.  In the Celtics wins they are holding teams to 89 points per game.  In their losses, they are allowing 101 points per game.  When they bring their defensive intensity they win and when they don't they lose.  It's that simple. 

Rebound - Rebounding is very important in limiting fast break points and second chance points for Memphis.  The Grizzlies are very good at getting second chance points off of offensive rebounds and putbacks with Randoph and Gasol playing inside.    The Celtics must be aggressive in crashing the boards.  The team that wins the battle of the boards usually wins the game.   

Take Care of the Ball - The Grizzlies are among the best in the league in forced turnovers and steals and they are also very good at scoring off those turnovers.  The Celtics must take care of the ball and avoid careless passes and lapses in focus or the Grizzlies will make them pay.  Rondo must especially concentrate on his passes and ball handling as Conley averages 2.4 steals a game.   

Be Aggressive for 48 Minutes - When the Celtics are passive and settle for jumpers and don't swarm on defense they end up in trouble. 
The Celtics need to come out strong and play aggressively until the final buzzer.  They can't allow the Grizzlies to build a lead because their defense will make it difficult to come back.   

Rondo and Avery
Avery Bradley's return should give the team a boost, but if Rondo can't go, it could cancel out any benefits they get from Bradley's presence.  Hopefully both are ready to go and will play well. 

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2013, 10:32:13 PM »

Offline j804

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Let's go on a run baby....Go C's
"7ft PG. Rondo leaves and GUESS WHAT? We got a BIGGER point guard!"-Tommy on Olynyk

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2013, 10:33:14 PM »

Online Who

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It feels like Memphis has been struggling lately. I keep seeing them struggling on the scoreboard updates over the last few weeks. Dropping off after their hot start perhaps.

Still, I think their bigs of M.Gasol and Z.Randolph will be too much for the Celtics here. Not optimistic about Boston's chances of picking up a result.

Pretty worried about Rondo and Pierce trying to defend Conley and Gay too. Pierce has really been struggling lately on the defensive end. Rondo was terrible (on defense) against Sacramento. If he is in that bad shape, I'd rather see Rondo sit out a few games and live with the results.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2013, 10:43:02 PM »

Offline Celtics18

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The prospect of getting Avery back, but possibly losing Rondo is depressing.  That kind of deflates the whole thing for me a little bit.  The point was to have our ultra--speedy, pesky back court back.  Who knows how long this Rondo thing will linger. 


DKC Seventy-Sixers:

PG: G. Hill/D. Schroder
SG: C. Lee/B. Hield/T. Luwawu
SF:  Giannis/J. Lamb/M. Kuzminskas
PF:  E. Ilyasova/J. Jerebko/R. Christmas
C:    N. Vucevic/K. Olynyk/E. Davis/C. Jefferson

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2013, 11:11:06 PM »

Offline 33_Larry Legend_33

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How bad will we get out-rebounded??  I LOVE Randolph's game - he's a throwback player that I truly enjoy.  Reminds me of Wayman Tisdale, but he boards better.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2013, 11:40:43 PM »

Offline jpd985

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Bradley will be rusty and will need time to get back up to speed. Couple that will the Memphis bigs I don't expect the night to end well for the Celtics.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2013, 03:52:24 AM »

Offline j804

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I can't wait to see Bradley pick up Conley full court...the Garden will go nuts on the first pocket he picks 8)
"7ft PG. Rondo leaves and GUESS WHAT? We got a BIGGER point guard!"-Tommy on Olynyk

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2013, 04:20:43 AM »

Offline Smutzy#9

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Ima turn my speakers down when bradley steps on the court for the first time cz the gardens gonna go NUUUUUUUUUUUUUTS

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2013, 08:13:10 AM »

Offline azzenfrost

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Might cancel an appointment just to watch this.
I moved the cheese.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2013, 08:28:36 AM »

Offline Yoki_IsTheName

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Love Mike Conley's game but GIVE HIM HELL AB!

Will definitely wake wake up early for this. (I sleep during the day)
2019 CStrong Historical Draft 2000s OKC Thunder.
PG: Jrue Holiday / Isaiah Thomas / Larry Hughes
SG: Paul George / Aaron McKie / Bradley Beal
SF: Paul Pierce / Tayshaun Prince / Brian Scalabrine
PF: LaMarcus Aldridge / Shareef Abdur-Raheem / Ben Simmons
C: Jermaine O'neal / Ben Wallace

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2013, 09:28:06 AM »

Offline alajet

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AB vs TA. An interesting match-up this could be.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #11 on: January 02, 2013, 05:42:31 PM »

Offline crimson_stallion

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Call me crazy, but I'm predicting a win tonight. 

I genuinely believe that one of our three biggest issues is defense in the backcourt.  While Bradley may struggle offensively until he finds his groove, I think defenisvely he will be ready from the get-go.

Also like us, Memphis don't have a very big backcourt with both Conley and Allen being 6'4" or under.  Even if Rondo is out, I think Terry + Bradley match up well with Conley + Allen.

I also think Sullinger is going to match up well with Randolf. Similar sized guys, both are bulky and strong but neither is especially tall or athletic.

Likewise if Green can play strong defense on Gay like he did against Durant then I think we match up extremely well with this team.

If I were Doc I would start:


I think that's our best lineup for matchup up with the Grizzlies starters, and I think Barbosa/Lee/Green/Bass are find against Memphis' bench.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #12 on: January 02, 2013, 06:30:42 PM »

Offline timobusa

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heres to hoping we get a win tonight.

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #13 on: January 02, 2013, 06:53:27 PM »

Offline GreenFaith1819

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Welcome back, AB! Let's get a W, BOS!

Re: Grizzlies (19-9) at Celtics (14-16) 1/2
« Reply #14 on: January 02, 2013, 06:59:56 PM »

Offline D.o.s.

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I think ZBo is going to feast on our bigs, but I see the Celtics winning, especially if Rondo plays.
At least a goldfish with a Lincoln Log on its back goin' across your floor to your sock drawer has a miraculous connotation to it.