I don’t lie, playoffs ain’t easy. It was another thriller in Boston, but this time the Celts emerged victorious. And this is exactly why I wanted the Bulls to play the Celts in the first round. This series is simply invaluable experience for them.
Ray Allen didn’t look so creaky in game 2, flying around screens to get open and get the ball. He had 30 points with 5 assists and was active, active, active. Big Baby was another hero for Boston. I was happy he was shooting those 15-18 footers. The only problem is they kept falling. I also just love Kendrick Perkins. I wish he was on the Bulls. He’s already given Joakim Noah a fire we haven’t seen until now.
And how about Rajon Rondo? His ankle was grotesquely twisted, yet he came back even stronger. He had 19-12-16, for an incredible triple-double. But don’t forget his 5 steals and just 2 turnovers.
But here’s why the Bulls lost: they were killed on the glass and they were killed by points in the paint. Both of those were won by Boston by a tally of 50 to 36. The Celts had 21 offensive rebounds. Yes, it did seem that they got the majority of lucky bounces. But they were tipping balls and keeping possessions alive. They had 21 offensive rebounds. That is simply insane. And they got inside with penetration and converted down low.
For the Bulls, Ben Gordon was out there playing Sega. He had 42 points and made so many huge baskets. Noah played like a man possessed. Tyrus blocked 6 shots, but was a -21 in just 20 minutes. Brad Miller’s numbers looked better in game 2 — 16 & 9 and a huge block in the 4th — but he still looks out of sorts.
There was some criticism on the local postgame show because in both of these games Vinny has left the Bulls without a timeout at the end of the game. It would have been great to have one on that last possession, but I think that Vinny used them to stop runs effectively. There were a number of times I thought the game was about to break open for the Celts, and Vinny used the TOs to quell that. The Bulls were in the game right until the last second. Even if they had a TO there I doubt it would have mattered.
Game 3 on Thursday in Chicago…if you can handle it.