By By Travis H. Singleton, BASN sports writer
Updated: March 30, 2012
BOSTON,MA (BASN)—The Boston Celtics have played very,very well after the All Star break with a 13-4 record since the break. They are currently one of the hottest teams in the NBA right now coming off their wins against the Washington Wizards and the Utah Jazz.
The Celtics have shown that their is still something left in the tank with this team even with the age creeping up on them. Paul Pierce has been on a tear lately averaging over 22 points a game since the break and is showing that the truth still hurts. Pierce said ” I have my legs back and I’m ready and committed to making us a better team day by day”. With that being said you can see the confidence in him and the belief he has in his teammates.
The Celtics have the pieces to make a serious playoff push but the one thing holding them back is the injury bug this season. The season started off with the blow of Jeff Green out with heart problems and then Chris Wilcox and now Michael Pietrus with his neck injury. The Celtics have gotten a huge lift off the bench from Avery Bradley while Ray Allen has been out with his right ankle sprain. Avery Bradley has showed some promise in his game having a career high 23 points against the Washington Wizards if he can produce a good 8 or 10 points per game he can provide that bench presence to go along with Pietrus when he comes back from injury.
The Celtics know that this league runs on runs and they know any minute a team can get hot they want to go into this last month of the regular season of the “Big Three” era strong and positive and lay it all out on the line.
Kevin Garnett had a huge night for the Celtics going against the Jazz as he recorded 23 points and 10 rebounds as he was challenged and motivated by former Celtic he was traded for Al Jefferson. When KG and Al squared off you can tell their was some tension because, of that trade as the two were very physical during the game guarding each other elbowing and even got a double technical foul. KG said after the game ” Playing against young talent like Al is motivation for a old player like me, I just want to prove to myself I can still hang with them”. In the Celtics 94-82 win over the Jazz the Celtics had showed a lot of poise and growth from the bench and the starters as they hung in there after blowing an 18 point lead in the game. As a team you can build off of the letdown of letting a team back in the game to give you a rude awakening but, you have to make sure you stay on top of the team your playing and keep the chemistry of the team together.
The Celtics have been very sharp since the break and are playing some great basketball and they actually look like they are the team that can compete with the Bulls and the Heat.
The Celtics have a tough battle coming up this tomorrow that we will need to get familiar with in the month of April as they play the Miami Heat three times. This will determine if the team is playoff ready going up against the best in the east. The Celtics would be a tough out in the playoffs no matter who they play against and with the “Big Three” possibly breaking up this summer their is a certain will in the locker room from them to go out with a bang. I’m not mad at that Ainge didn’t get rid of anyone on the “Big Three” because, I feel like he should let them play it out and go for the championship this last time together. But with the Heat on Sunday coming into town the Celtics need to improve on their rebounding if their going to challenge the Heat. The Celtics have been winning a lot of games without rebounding the ball well and this is one of those games where they really need a Ryan Hollins or Brandon Bass to take over the glass. The Heat have been on a slump lately and are looking for the challenge against Boston to get back on track. The Celtics can make some noise in the playoffs but, they need to get a little healthier and also they will need to be well rested.
All the Celtics have to do to beat the Heat in this three game series in the month of april is play smart and also make runs early in the games to keep Miami on the ropes. Doc Rivers has shown is trust and faith in his players and isn’t going to stop that now as they push for the fourth seed in the playoffs if they can catch the 76ers for the Atlantic Division.
Check The Interviews Below
Al Jefferson Post Game Interview
1. Can you talk about you and Garnett?
It was really nothing.
2. Talk about the emotions coming back to Boston?
It’s always nice to come back to Boston and play it would be nice if I could get a win though.
3. Talk about the come back and what happened down the stretch?
It was tough we knew they were going to hit us with a couple runs but we fought back. It was just Boston being Boston they made shots and we had to keep playing hard to stay in the game.
Paul Pierce Post Game Interview
1. What’s impressed you with Avery Bradley?
Just his confidence in his game and we know his ability and he’s getting in game experience and he’s looking good.
2. Talk about the team trying to catch up to Philly in crunch time?
We just have to make sure we take it a game at a time and we will have to be together if we going to make a huge playoff run.
Kevin Garnett Post Game Interview
1. What has gotten into your game lately you look like your in the zone now?
I’m just motivated and I hear you’ll talking about how old I am and etc and I’m looking in the mirror trying to see what I can do better. It doesn’t take much to motivate me and I like playing against young talent because, it gets me going.
2. How was it playing Big Al tonight?
I was motivated that’s all
3. Kevin you have been to Minnesota more times since you left does it mean anything more since you have spent your career in that city?
I love the true fans and foundation but, as far as the organization I have nothing positive to say.
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