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Down 3-1 to the Miami Heat, the Celtics are on the brink of elimination and possibly the end of the new “Big Three” era. Clearly things haven’t exactly followed the blueprint in the playoffs for Boston, but why? One big problem is the production, or lack of production, from one big baby. Glen Davis has been virtually nonexistent in the 2011 postseason, begging the question “Where is Big Baby?”
“I’ve been nowhere to be found this whole playoffs,” said Davis after Monday’s loss to the Heat. “I need to find myself.”
The regular season brilliance of Glen Davis has definitely not translated into the playoffs and his disappearing act couldn’t have come at a more inconvenient time for Boston. In the regular season, Davis was one of the top candidates to win the Sixth Man of the Year Award. In 78 games, he averaged 11.7 points per, 5.4 rebounds and he shot 44% from the floor. All those numbers are down in the playoffs.
In 8 postseason games, he’s only contributing 4.8 points per game, 3.8 rebounds and his shooting percentage is down to 39%.
In the second round, Davis has scored an insignificant 14 points for a pathetic 3.5 points a game average. He’s pulling down a mere 2.5 rebounds per and he’s shooting an abysmal 29%.
Could it be that maybe he’s just not a playoff performer? Not at all. In the three seasons prior, Davis never shot worse than 41% in the playoffs (and that stat came in his rookie season).
In 2009, Davis took his role as the “Ticket Stub,” while filling in for the injured Kevin Garnett. He averaged 15.8 points a game and had the best shooting percentage of his playoff career at 49%. That year, the Ticket Stub took his intensity to a KG level and in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals against the Orlando Magic, he nearly killed a 12-year-old boy because of it. Davis drained a baseline jumper at the buzzer to give the green team a 95-94 win. Then like a bull in a china shop, he took off towards the Celtics’ bench, plowing a young Magic fan in the process.
In another Game 4, this time in last season’s NBA finals, the Ticket Stub moved on to a new nickname. After he and his sidekick Nate Robinson combined for 30 points off the bench, Robinson said the two were inseparable like Shrek and Donkey. The postgame comedy act came about after Big Baby did just what big babies are suppose to do; drool. With Robinson hanging on his back Davis let out a yell after earning a chance at a three-point play and a stream of drool came with it. In the game, Shrek scored 18 points, nine of them coming in the fourth quarter.
He’s had his playoff moments that’s for certain, but for some reason in 2011 Shrek has gone back to the kingdom of Far Far Away.
“I don’t know where I’m at,” Davis continued after Monday night’s game. “It’s my type of year. This is what I do. My years of big playing with the Celtics, playoff ball, this is when I play best. It’s not showing right now.”
The problem with Davis is that he’s not being active. He’s not playing like the energy player he was all year. His focus is clearly in the wrong place and when he should be taking charges and making all the hustle plays, he’s instead hanging his head and throwing up tough contested shots. Big Baby has made his name with his passion and desire to risk it all for every possession. His scoring came through that kind of effort. That’s what has been lacking in the playoffs.
“I’ve got to find Glen,” he said. “I don’t know where Glen’s at. I have no idea who’s playing right now.”
If he can find a way to slow things down and let the game come to him, he’ll find Glen along with it. Until then, maybe his 2011 nickname should be “Waldo.” Doc needs to wipe Davis’ mind clear and get him to stop focusing on his struggles. Then, we may see him stop trying to do too much. The only problem is we have only one game left for him to get everything back in order. If he doesn’t, we’re likely to see the C’s starting their summer a lot earlier than anticipated.
Follow Brian Moller on Twitter: @Brian_Moller