Celtics Look to Get Back on Winning Track Against Winless Nets

Boston Celtics (6-1) at New Jersey Nets (0-6)
Saturday, November 7
7:30 PM ET
Game #8 Away Game #4
TV: CSN HD, YES HD, LP 751, 752
Izod Center
Referees:   Mark Wunderlich,  Joe Forte, Eli Roe  

The Nets are traditional rivals of the Celtics as we think back to the 2002 Eastern Conference Finals where the Nets defeated the Celtics in a hotly contested 6 game series. The Nets have fallen on hard times and this season are just marking time until they can make a play for LeBron or some other big free agent in 2010. Their ownership and even location are up in the air at this point and that can't make for a very stable club.

Both teams are playing in the second of back to back games and both teams had to travel the night before. New Jersey played at Philly and
Boston played the Suns at home. However, older legs have a harder time in back to back games. If the Wolves game was any indication, this may be closer than it should be. The Nets have been depleted by injuries and may run out of players at the rate they are going. They had just 4 available players off the bench last night and then Courtney Lee left the game with a leg injury. I'm not sure about his status for tonight's game.

The Nets are still winless after a 3 point loss to Philly on Friday. The Celtics are no longer undefeated so now they can get on with the rest of the season. For the second game in a row, the Celtics allowed a team to shoot over 50%. The Nets are an ideal team to get them back on track.

ProbableStarting Matchups
Point Guard
[image] vs [image]
Rajon Rondo vs Rafer Alston

Shooting Guard
[image] vs [image]
Ray Allen vs Courtney Lee

Small Forward
[image] vs [image]
Paul Pierce vs Chris Douglas Roberts

Power Forward
[image] vs [image]
Kevin Garnett vs Eduardo Najera

[image] vs [image]
Kendrick Perkins vs Brook Lopez

Eddie House
Rasheed Wallace
Marquis Daniels
Shelden Williams
Brian Scalabrine
Lester Hudson

Bill Walker (knee) out
Tony Allen (ankle) out
Big Baby Davis (thumb) out

Josh Boone
Sean Williams
Bobby Simmons
Trenton Hassell

Keyon Dooling (hip) out
Tony Battie (knee) out
Devin Harris (groin) questionable
Jarvis Hayes (hamstring) out
Yi Jianlian (MCL) out
Courtney Lee (leg) questionable

Key Matchups
[image] vs [image]
Rajon Rondo 9.2 PPG 9.7 APG 2.8 SPG
Rafer Alston 7.8 PPG4.6 APG ,4 SPG

[image] vs [image]
Kendrick Perkins 9.2 PPG 5.5 RPG 2.3 BPG
Brook Lopez 16.2 PPG 7.2 RPG 2.2 BPG

Game Notes
• Celtics swept the season series 4-0 against New Jersey in 2008-09
• Paul Pierce led the Celtics with 19.0 points per game last season
• Devin Harris averaged 16.3 points per game against the Celtics last season in four games
• The Celtics are currently on a nine game winning streak against the Nets which marks their longest winning streak against the Nets since an 11
game winning streak that spanned the 1980-81 and 1981-82 season
• The Celtics are leading the all-time series 103-54 with the Celtics 55-24 at home

Keys to the Game:
Defense (first and always) 
Energy and Intensity
Hit Free Throws 
Don't Over Rely on the Three
Bench Play