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Chicago Bulls (9-7) at Boston Celtics (14-4)
Friday, December 3
8:00 PM ET
Game #19,  Home Game #10
TV:  ESPN, CSN-C, CSNNE
Radio:   WEEI,  WMVP
TD Garden 
Referees:    Bill Kennedy,  Curtis Blair,  LeRoy Richardson 

The Celtics will welcome a couple of familiar faces when the Bulls come to visit the Garden.  Tom Thibodeau, who was credited with the defense that
led the Celtics to their 17th championship is coming back to the Garden for his second game as the Bulls' head coach.    Brian Scalabrine, who was a fan favorite in Boston for 5 seasons, has joined Thibs in Chicago but with the return of Carlos Boozer from his injury, Scal was on the inactive list for the last game.

In the first meeting between these two teams, the Celtics came out on top 110-105 in overtime.  The Celtics had 7 players in double figures in that game and were led by Ray Allen with 25.  Noah led the Bulls with 25 points and 12 rebounds and Derrick Rose added 18 points and 9 assists. 

The Celtics come into this game on a 5 game winning streak while the Bulls are coming off a 107-78 loss to Orlando.   The Celtics are 8-1 at home while the Bulls are 4-5 on the road.   The Bulls are healthy with no injuries to report while the Celtics are battling multiple injuries.  Both Nate and Rajon are battling foot injuries along with Rajon's hamstring continuing to be a concern.  Jermaine O'Neal remains on the sidelines along with Perk and now Delonte West joins them with the wrist injury.

The Bulls will be looking to avenge their previous loss to the Celtics as well as to bounce back from their embarrassing loss to the Magic in their last game.  The Celtics will be looking to continue their win streak as well as to remain dominant at home. 




Probable Starters

PG: Rajon Rondo..................................................SG Ray Allen

C:  Shaquille O'Neal

SF:  Paul Pierce ................................. ............PF Kevin Garnett

Coach: Doc Rivers

Boston Bench Mob
Marquis Daniels
Glen Davis
Luke Harangody
Nate Robinson
Von Wafer
Semih Erden
Avery Bradley

Injured
Kendrick Perkins (knee) out
Jermaine O'Neal (knee) out 
Delonte West (wrist) out
Rajon Rondo (plantar fasciitis) probable
Nate Robinson (foot) probable 



Probable Starters

PG:  Derrick Rose............................................. SG:  Keith Bogans

C:  Joakim Noah 

SF:  Luol Deng .................................................. PF:  Carlos Boozer

Coach:  Tom Thibodeau 

Bulls Bench
Omar Asik
James Johnson
C.J. Watson
Kyle Korver
Ronnie Brewer
Brian Scalabrine
Kurt Thomas
Taj Gibson 

Injuries
None

Key Matchups
  vs 
Rajon Rondo  11.4 PPG,  13.8 APG,  2.2 SPG
Derrick Rose   25.8 PPG, 7.9 APG, 0.9 SPG
This is one of the premier point guard matchups in the league.  There is a lot of discussion about whether Rondo or Rose is the better PG and in a head to head matchup, expect both players to do their best to make their case as the best.  Rondo is still struggling with his hamstring and the plantar fasciitis but in spite of the injuries,  he will be up for playing against Rose. 

  vs 
Shaquille  O'Neal  11.9 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 0.7 BPG
Joakim Noah   15.6 PPG, 12.4 RPG, 1.4 BPG
Noah leads the Bulls in rebounds and blocks and he plays with a lot of energy. In the first meeting between these two teams,  Shaq was injured and Noah played against an injured Jermaine O'Neal and came up with 26 points and 12 rebounds.

  vs 
Semih Erden   3.1 PPG,  1.9 RPG,  0.3 BPG
Omar Asik 2.9 PPG,  3.3 RPG,  0.8 BPG 
These two players were teammates on the Turkish National Team and will be facing each other as reserves in the NBA. 

  vs 
Doc Rivers (14-4) vs Tom Thibodeau (9-7)
After working with Doc for 3 seasons, Thibs is now coaching against him.  This coaching matchup is an interesting one to watch.

Game Notes
The Celtics will welcome a couple of familiar faces when the Bulls come to visit the Garden.  Tom Thibodeau, who was credited with the defense that
led the Celtics to their 17th championship is coming back to the Garden for his second game as the Bulls' head coach.    Brian Scalabrine, who was a fan favorite in Boston for 5 seasons, has joined Thibs in Chicago but with the return of Carlos Boozer from his injury, Scal was on the inactive list for the last game.

In the first meeting between these two teams, the Celtics came out on top 110-105.  The Celtics had 7 players in double figures in that game and were led by Ray Allen with 25.  Noah led the Bulls with 25 points and 12 rebounds and Derrick Rose added 18 points and 9 assists. 

The Celtics come into this game on a 5 game winning streak while the Bulls are coming off a 107-78 loss to Orlando.   The Celtics are 8-1 at home while the Bulls are 4-5 on the road.   The Bulls are healthy with no injuries to report while the Celtics are battling multiple injuries.  Both Nate and Rajon are battling foot injuries along with Rajon's hamstring continuing to be a concern.  Jermaine O'Neal remains on the sidelines along with Perk and now Delonte West joins them with the wrist injury.

The Bulls will be looking to avenge their previous loss to the Celtics and the Celtics will be looking to continue their win streak as well as remaining dominant at home. 


Keys to the Game

Rondo/Rose Matchup -  This is not only a key matchup, but one of the keys to the game.  Both point guards control the tempo of their team and both are key to their team's success.  Rondo is struggling with both foot and hamstring injuries and with Nate also nursing a sore foot, Rondo has to play through the pain and the Celtics need him to play at a high level. 

Rebound
- The Celtics have to rebound the ball.   When the Celtics win the battle of the boards, they usually win as that means that they are putting out the effort and energy needed to rebound and it transfers to every other part of their game.  The Magic figured out the importance of limiting the Bulls on the glass.  In the Magic's blow out win over the Bulls, they limited the Bulls to a franchise low 21 rebounds and held Noah to 0 rebounds and Boozer to just 2 rebounds.  The Celtics need to take heed and beat the Bulls in the rebounding battle.  

Defense - The Celtics must come to play defensively against the Bulls.  You know that Thibs will have the Bulls playing defense and the Celtics have to match that defensive intensity.   When the Celtics kick up their defense,  it also feeds their offense. 

Play in the Paint - The Celtics have been winning by outscoring opponents in the paint by large margins.  They have to continue to take the ball to the hoop and not just settle for outside shots. 

X- Factor
Home Court and Focus
The Celtics have said that they want to make the Garden a tough place for teams to play and so far, they have been doing that with an 8-1 record at home.  They need to continue to use home court to their advantage.  In order to do that, they have to come out focused and play for 48 minutes.  They can't expect to win a lot of games giving up 15-0 runs in the 4th quarter.  They have to keep their focus and play for 48 minutes. 

FLCeltsFan 12/03/2010 01:43:00 PM Edit
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2 Responses so far.

  1. Anonymous says:

    Boozer is back! Thats great to hear.
    Never want good players like him sitting on the sideline too long.
    Ready to see KG and him matchup. That should be the matchup of the night.
    Rondo and Rose is always awesome to watch.
    Hopefully Shaq bullies Noah in the post(I hate that guy, and he looks weird-and needs a haircut.lol)
    Dont want to see the Celtics start off slow like they did against Cleveland and Portland (and even Chicago last time they played).

  2. John says:

    Bill Kennedy tonight...we will lose

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