|Connelly’s Top Ten: USA Women, Red Sox Bore Astros into Submission||Preparing for Another Year of Rebuilding for the Celtics||Red Sox Bullpen Sleeper: Matt Barnes||The Case For Trading Clay Buchholz|
If Pau Gasol could pick one block of his season as his most important, he would probably pick Thursday night’s against Ray Allen that sealed the win for the Lakers in Boston. L.A. defeated the Celtics for the second time this year 110-109 in overtime in quite the nail-biter. There were some bad calls here and there, but overall, it was a very good game that just happened to see the Celtics on the wrong end of scoreboard.
The Celtics had a few different players that performed exceptionally well. Ray Allen led the way with 22 points just a few hours after he had been named to the Eastern Conference All-Star Team. Paul Pierce had 21 points and Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo each added 16. Garnett fouled out after a very controversial call on a loose ball, which, maybe if the call had gone the other way, we might have seen the Celtics win.
Eddie House got back on track with 16 points and Leon Powe had 10. The Celtics bench really could have used a bigger contribution from Glen Davis who only finished with two points (on his go-ahead jumper late in overtime) after his last few red-hot games.
For the Lakers, there should be no surprise when I say that Kobe Bryant led the way with 26 points and 10 rebounds. Pao Gasol was right behind him with 24 points and 14 rebounds. Lamar Odom added 20 and Derek Fisher had 13. Odom will be key for the Lakers while they try to fill the void left by Andrew Bynum’s injury.
The Celtics hopefully will not fall into another slump like they did after Christmas when the Lakers beat them in L.A. They have quite the road trip ahead of them and need to move past this loss and get back on track if they want to compete with Cleveland and Orlando in the East. The Celtics head to New York Friday night to take on the Knicks.