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Celtics Can’t Keep Up the Pace

Rasheed Wallace gets called for a technical foul in the 2nd (AP Photo/Darron Cummings).

The trouble against the Hawks hopped the plane with Boston as the Celtics lost consecutive games for the first time this season, losing to the Indiana Pacers 113-104.

You could tell it wouldn’t be the prettiest game when all five Pacer starters scored within the game’s first three and a half minutes. Kevin Garnett and Danny Granger led the way, each jumping out to an early scoring edge for their teams. It was a back and forth performance (biggest leads: Celtics 3 Pacers 5), with the Celtics’ first lead coming with 3:19 left in the 1st on Shelden Willams’ free throws. The 1st quarter battle would end with the Celtics up 27-26.

More of the same would be featured in the 2nd, though towards the end the Celtics would surge ahead, taking a 61-52 lead despite yet another Rasheed Wallace technical foul (for arguing a foul call in which Wallace barely contacted his man). Boston dominated 1st half free throw percentage (10/10 vs. 12/15) while Indiana was better from beyond the arc (6/11 vs. 1/4). The Celtics would also learn from Atlanta and hold a 29-13 rebounding advantage in the half.

The fun really started getting underway in the 3rd, when with 10:55 left, a Pacers shot went in, but didn’t come out; the net curled up and the ball remained stuck as if the bottom of the peach basket hadn’t been cut out yet. The Pacers later reclaimed the lead (81-79) with 38.9 seconds left, and led 84-79 at the end of the quarter.

The Celtics took the lead in the fourth quarter again, but quick technical fouls on Kendrick Perkins and Doc Rivers helped the Pacers push the lead back out. More back and forth action ensued, and the game ended on a bit of a funny note when, with 59.6 seconds left, Ray Allen’s three wedged itself between the rim and backboard, forcing a jump ball at half court.

The Celtics loss places the Hawks in the top seed in the East, and gives the Celtics their first consecutive regular season losses since March 15 and 17 (at Milwaukee and Chicago respectively).

C’s Stud of the Game: Ray Allen

I’m tempted to give it to Kendrick Perkins for a game-leading 13 rebounds, but Allen’s Celtics-leading 24 points is too much to ignore. He also led Boston in playing time and hit two of their three threes.

C’s Dud of the Game: Everyone Guarding Dahntay Jones and Danny Granger

Jones and Granger combined for 54 points. Enough said.

That’s What He Said:

“Granger has really been struggling from three-land this season, so I think the C’s would love it if the majority of his shots came from the perimeter.” – Marc D’Amico of Celtics.com, as the game began, on Indiana’s Danny Granger. Granger shot 6/9 from deep; boy was D’Amico wrong.

Game Notes:

  • Scoring Leaders: Danny Granger (IND 29), Dahntay Jones (IND 25), Ray Allen (BOS 24)
  • Field Goal Leaders: Danny Granger (IND 8/16), Ray Allen (BOS 8/18), Kevin Garnett (BOS 7/11), Dahntay Jones (IND 7/15)
  • Three Point Leaders: Danny Granger (IND 6/9), Brandon Rush (IND 2/2), Ray Allen (BOS 2/6)
  • Free Throw Leaders: Dahntay Jones (IND 11/15), Danny Granger (IND 7/7), Ray Allen (BOS 6/7), Paul Pierce (BOS 6/9)
  • Rebound Leaders: Kendrick Perkins (BOS 13), Shelden Williams (BOS 9), Brandon Rush (IND 8)
  • Assist Leaders: Earl Watson (IND 7), Luther Head (IND 6), Six others tied with 4
  • Steal Leaders: Danny Granger (IND 3), Four tied with 2, Brandon Rush (IND 1)
  • Block Leaders: Kendrick Perkins (BOS 2), Earl Watson (IND 2), Brandon Rush (IND 2)
  • Turnovers: BOS 14, IND 8
  • Foul-outs: Dahntay Jones (IND, 6:02 left in 4th)

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Discussion

3 comments for “Celtics Can’t Keep Up the Pace”

  1. Celtics Can’t Keep Up the Pace: The trouble against the Hawks hopped the plane with Boston as the Celtics lost co… http://bit.ly/4c5Iyc

    Posted by Sports of Boston | November 15, 2009, 1:14 am
  2. What’s going on here? This team bears no resemblance to the team that began the season looking invincible. Their defense has collapsed and they look like they have no real interest in competing. Rondo has played the last two games in a fog. House has forgotten how to shoot, and is embarrasing as a point guard. Rondo can’t hit a foul shot or a jumper. Three point shots? We can’t seem to defend them and we sure can’t hit them lately.

    I think their early success has gone to their heads. Right now they look old and slow. I hope Doc can light a fire under them before it gets to be a habit.

    Posted by Ken | November 15, 2009, 10:58 am
  3. yeah Ken I think they’re definitely tired, and as a result, a little more lazy.

    The Pacers with the win improved to 4-3…and the Celtics dropped to 8-3, which means theyve played FOUR more games this early in the season. that’s just ridiculous…

    Posted by KC | November 15, 2009, 1:24 pm

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