Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Game Four: Magic vs Celtics Recap (Celtics 3-1)

"We know that we were down 3-0, and we didn't want to go home [for the season]," Howard said. "It starts with me and Jameer. Me and Jameer showed our leadership by playing hard. We've got to be the leaders for this team. It's not about points, but just showing everybody, 'Hey, follow us and we'll lead the way.'"

Dwight Howard had 32 points and 16 rebounds, and Jameer Nelson made back-to-back 3-pointers in overtime to lead the Orlando Magic to a 96-92 victory over Boston on Monday night to avoid a four-game sweep in the Eastern Conference finals.

"At some point, somebody is going to come from 3-0 down and win a series. The only thing I knew for sure was it would start by winning Game 4," Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said. "I figured that one out. You have to win Game 4. ... This was a must-win."

Paul Pierce had 32 points and 11 rebounds, and Kevin Garnett had 14 points and 12 boards for Boston. Ray Allen hit consecutive 3-pointers in overtime, but Pierce missed two tries in the final minute as the Celtics failed to complete the sweep.

"They don't want to leave. We're going to have to throw them out," said Celtics forward Glen "Big Baby" Davis. "It's just like somebody renting a house."

"There were a couple of plays down the stretch offensively that we botched, plain and simple. We're kicking ourselves. We had a great opportunity," Allen said. "There's no need to panic. We like the position we're in. But it's a lesson: We have to take care of the small things and we'll get to where we want to be."

"I know they [the Celtics players] heard it. They had no choice but to hear it," Celtics coach Doc Rivers said. "I don't know if they believed it. We didn't play well, I know that. I hope that wasn't the reason."

"You never know what can happen," Magic guard J.J. Redick said. "We can be like the Red Sox, coming back from 0-3. You never know."

But Pierce missed a jumper with a chance to give Boston the lead, Nelson missed for Orlando and Pierce lost his handle on the ball in the final seconds of regulation to send the game into overtime.

Game notes
Sporting goods chain Modell's sent out an e-mail a few hours before the game advertising Eastern Conference championship gear -- if the Celtics won. ... Garnett was called for a technical foul with 9:22 left in the third quarter after shoving Howard. ... After 
Rajon Rondo left the game with his third foul late in the first half, he went to the locker room with muscle spasms. He returned for the start of the third quarter. He finished with nine points and eight assists. ... It was the first playoff overtime for the Celtics since having four overtime games against Chicago in the first round last year. - ESPN
I did not like the Celtics offense at the end of the game and in the Overtime.  I felt the ball movement stopped and it was too many isolations.  In the overtime, KG missed a wide open Ray Allen and settled for a contested jump shot that wasn't even close. Give credit to Orlando they seemed like they played harder then the Boston Celtics.
Orlando found an answer for Rondo (Early Foul Trouble), made their threes (10-28), and kept finding Dwight Howard on switches leaving him guarded by KG, Pierce, or Rondo.  Kendrick Perkins did not show up for this game at all.  It seemed the Celtics were like every other team Orlando played, no big men. 
Game 5 will be interesting to see how the Celtics can bounce back after letting this game slip, but it must be encouraging when Rondo doesn't play well and the bench only contributes 12 points.  Orlando will have to continue to shoot the ball well from downtown and the Big Fella will need to continue to be a wrecking force. - PBT


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