Author Topic: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18  (Read 5501 times)

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Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« on: December 26, 2018, 09:48:32 PM »

Offline FLCeltsFan

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  at 
Boston Celtics (20-13) at Houston Rockets (18-15)
Thursday, December 27, 2018
8:00 PM ET
Regular Season Game #34, Road Game #18
TV:  TNT
Radio: 98.5 Sports Hub, ESPN Radio
Toyota Center



Probable Starting Matchups
Point Guard
vs
Kyrie Irving vs James Harden

Shooting Guard

vs
Marcus Smart vs Eric Gordon

Small Forward
vs  
Jayson Tatum vs Danuel House

Power Forward
  vs 
Marcus Morris vs PJ Tucker

Center
vs
Al Horford vs Clint Capela 

Reserves
Semi Ojeleye
Terry Rozier
Daniel Theis
Brad Wanamaker
Robert Williams
Guerschon Yabusele
Gordon Hayward
Jaylen Brown

Injuries
Jabari Bird (personal) out
Aron Baynes (hand) out

Two Way Players
PJ Dozier

Head Coach

Brad Stevens



Reserves
Austin Rivers
Michael Carter Williams
Marquese Chriss
Gary Clark
Vincent Edwards
Gerald Green
Isaiah Hartenstein
Brandon Knight
Nene

Injuries
James Harden (calf) questionable
Chris Paul (hamstring) out
James Ennis  (hamstring) day to day
Carmelo Anthony (not with team)  out

Two Way Players

Vince Edwards
Danuel House

Head Coach

Mike D'Antoni 

Game Notes
The Celtics travel to Houston for the first of two games with the Houston Rockets.  They will meet again in Boston on March 3.  They split the series last season with each team winning on their home court.   The Rockets have won 6 of their last 7 at home and 7 of 8 overall.  This begins a 3 game Western road trip for the Celtics that will also take them to San Antonio and Memphis. 

Both teams have won 2 in a row including a win on Christmas day with the Celtics beating the Sixers and the Rockets beating the Thunder.  The Celtics are 9-8 on the road while the Rockets are 11-5 at home.  Both are 7-3 in their last 10 games. 

Th Celtics are 5th in the East, just 1 game behind 4th place Sixers and 4 games behind first place Raptors.  Houston is in 7th place in the West and they are also 4 games back of the first place Nuggets.   The Rockets are 7-4 vs Eastern Conference teams while the Celtics are 5-6 vs Western Conference teams. 

The Celtics are still missing Aron Baynes, who is targeting MLK Day for his return.  The Rockets will miss Chris Paul, who is out with a hamstring injury.  James Harden injured his calf on Christmas day but that didn't stop him from finishing that game with 39 points.  He is listed as questionable for this game.  James Ennis is day to day with a hamstring injury. 


Key Matchups

vs
Kyrie Irving vs James Harden
With Chris Paul out with the injury, James Harden has  moved to the point guard spot. Both players are coming off big games on Christmas day. Harden is averaging 32.2 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 8.4 assists per game.   Harden is rumored to have a calf contusion so is listed as questionable.  I have a feeling he will play but if he doesn't, Austin Rivers should see the majority of his minutes.  If Harden plays, I can see Smart guarding him rather than Kyrie.  We all remember Smart getting into Harden's head in the past and will probably do it again.

vs
Marcus Smart vs Eric Gordon
Gordon is averaging 15.3 points, 2.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists.  As I said, we may see Smart covering Harden and Kyrie on Gorden.  Neither Harden or Gordon is a lock down defender and so we may see another big game from Kyrie in this one. 

Honorable Mention
Al Horford vs Clint Capela
Capela is averaging 17.1 points, 12.5 rebounds, and 1.97 blocks per game.  He is also their rim protector.  Al said he felt good after his 30 minutes playing against Embiid on Christmas and should be up to the task of guarding Capela in this one. 


Keys to the Game

Defense -  Defense is always a key to every game.  Defense wins games.   The Rockets are 19th in the league in scoring at 109.3 ppg.  The Celtics are 12th, averaging 111.6 points per game.  The Rockets are 26th with a defensive rating of 111.2 while the Celtics are 3rd with a defensive rating of 103.4.  The Celtics absolutely need to play hard nose gritty team defense.
 
Rebound -  In order to score, the Celtics need the ball and to get the ball, they will need to crash the boards as a team.   They can't allow the Rockets to own the boards, which will limit the Celtics fast breaks as well as their second chance points. Houston averages 41.7 rebounds while the Celtics average 46.1 rebounds per game.   Much of rebounding is effort and when the Celtics put out extra effort on the boards, it usually carries over into the rest of their game.

Energy and Aggressiveness - The Celtics need to play physical ball and be aggressive on both ends of the court.    They have to come out and play hard from start to finish with no let up.  At times it seems that when the Celtics get a lead, they stop being aggressive.   They have to be aggressive and they have to play like the team that wants it more for 48 minutes.  They can't let the Rockets get a big lead in this one because they won't give it back.

Teamwork
- The Celtics team meeting addressed selfish play and not playing a team game.  They seem to have righted the ship in that area in their last two wins.  They have to continue to play team ball, making the extra pass and finding the open man for the best shot available. 

X-Factors
On the Road - The Celtics are playing the 1st game of a 3 game road trip.  They have to focus on the task at hand and not allow the distractions of the road and a hostile crowd to take them out of the game. 

Officiating - The officiating is always an x-factor.  James Harden always seems to get more than his share of free throws.  The Celtics can't let star calls in his direction take away their focus.  They have to play through whatever calls go against them.  Hopefully the refs will call the game evenly and it won't be an issue but you never know. 

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2018, 09:49:51 PM »

Offline Phantom255x

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FIRST!!

Letís extend the winning streak to 3   8)

Also very interesting to see whether Harden plays or not. Is he avoiding the matchup with Smart?  ???  :laugh:

But this is a big test of consistency. Letís follow up the big win over PHI with another strong performance the next game.
"Tough times never last, but tough people do." - Robert H. Schuller

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2018, 09:50:05 PM »

Offline FLCeltsFan

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TP to Phantom255x  for being the first to post in the game thread!!!! 

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO Celtics!!!!!

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2018, 10:08:25 PM »

Offline hpantazo

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Let's see if Harden has the guts to show up and battle with Smart. Go Celtics!

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2018, 10:37:55 PM »

Offline nickagneta

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Time for another big win against another very good team. Go Celtics

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2018, 10:41:20 PM »

Offline trickybilly

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Destroy these Rockets.
"Gimme the ball, gimme the ball". Freddy Quimby, 1994.

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #6 on: December 26, 2018, 10:44:02 PM »

Offline Ogaju

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GO CELTICS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! TP FLCF....... GO CELTICS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #7 on: December 26, 2018, 10:53:58 PM »

Offline Jiri Welsch

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Lets get a W!!!

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2018, 04:00:32 AM »

Offline LatterDayCelticsfan

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Best matchup of the regular season!!!!
We have the Timelord and Spacelord. Now we need the Soul Lord, Power Lord, Reality Lord, and Mind Lord

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2018, 06:29:30 AM »

Offline hodgy03038

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Go Celts. Need a big win. Although I fear them less than Philly we need to make sure another ex-Celtic (Green) doesn't torch us. Marcus on Harden takes 6 offensive charges. Let's Go!


Flop tough guy

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2018, 07:30:37 AM »

Offline Surferdad

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Let's see if Harden has the guts to show up and battle with Smart. Go Celtics!
Should be a great match-up.  I'll take Kyrie guarding Gordon.

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2018, 11:11:37 AM »

Offline apc

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@espn_macmahon
Source: Rockets guard James Harden is expected to play vs. Celtics. He's listed as questionable due to a left calf contusion.

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2018, 02:42:29 PM »

Online rondofan1255

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go c's

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2018, 04:31:09 PM »

Offline RodyTur10

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The Houston defence is atrocious. Destroy them!

Hint: don't make it a shooting contest.
George Carlin ó 'That's why they call it the American Dream, because you have to be asleep to believe it.'

Re: Celtics (20-13) at Rockets (18-15) Game #34 12/27/18
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2018, 05:55:25 PM »

Offline KG Living Legend

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 Some pretty to see that 20 and 13 record. Let's make it 21-13!

 

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