Celtics Looking To Bounce Back, Tie Series

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Boston Celtics (0-1, 12-6) at Los Angeles Lakers (1-0, 13-4)
Sunday, June 6
8:00 PM ET
Staples Center 
Referees:  Monty McCutchen,  Mike Callahan,  Ken Mauer
In spite of all the talk about Phil Jackson being 47-0 when he wins the first game of a series, this series is far from over. The Celtics were out worked and out hustled in just about every category in game 1. The Lakers played like they wanted it more. But it was just one game and the Celtics have certainly been counted out after losses before only to come back and dominate. They lost game 1 in Cleveland and came back to win game 2. They were blown out on their home court only to come back and win game 4 and ultimately the series.

The Celtics defense didn't show up and neither did their ball movement or team play. And in spite of how poorly the Celtics played, they still had a chance to win it through most of the game. The officiating was very tight in game one and that favored the Lakers because the Celtics, particularly both Allens spent much of the night in foul trouble. Hopefully they will loosen up a little and let them play in game 2.

The Celtics have to come out with more energy in game 2 and not allow the Lakers to beat them to all the loose balls and rebounds. They must win the hustle game and be the team that wants it more. Most of what went wrong in the first game can be fixed by hustle, desire and energy in game 2.

Probable Starters
Point Guard: Rajon Rondo ---------------- Shooting Guard: Ray Allen
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Center: Kendrick Perkins

Small Forward: Paul Pierce ------------------ Power Forward: Kevin Garnett
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Probable Starters
Point Guard: Derek Fisher -------------------- Shooting Guard: Kobe Bryant
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Center: Andrew Bynum

Small Forward: Ron Artest -------------------- Power Forward: Pau Gasol
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Key Matchups
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Rajon Rondo vs Derek Fisher
Rondo had a very un-Rondo like game in game 1. Rondo must be aggressive on both ends of the court. He has to keep Fisher from hitting those back breaking shots that he has hit in so many games. He also must set the pace for the Celtics' offense and keep it moving. Rondo has to make Kobe work if he is going to guard him and he has to hit his shots when they give them to him.

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Pau Gasol out played KG by a lot in the first game. He made KG look old and slow as he tallied 23 points, 14 rebounds and 3 blocks. Gasol played 47 minutes and that shows how important he is to their attack. KG has got to be more aggressive on both ends of the court if the Celtics are to win this game.

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Paul Pierce vs Ron Artest
Artest played great defense but he also hit some big shots in game 1. Pierce was able to get 24 points and 9 rebounds but he was 0-4 from beyond the arc and had to work for everything he got.

Keys to the Game
Defense - Defense is the key to winning the championship. In game 1, the Lakers played it and the Celtics didn't. The Lakers were allowed to get to the rim way too easily. Second chance points were 16-0 in the Lakers favor. The Celtics also allowed the Lakers to shoot 49% while the Lakers held them to 43%. The Celtics must find their defensive intensity if they want to win this series.

- Rebounding is second only to defense as a key to winning. The Celtics were out rebounded 42-31 in game 1. The Celtics allowed the Lakers to get 16 second chance points, many on wide open tip ins. The Celtics must crash the boards and prevent the tip ins and second chance points for the Lakers along with giving themselves a chance for some second chance points. The Lakers also beat them 12-5 on fast break points. This can be reversed by beating the Lakers to the boards as well.

Run the Offense - In game 1, the Celtics didn't run their offense. There was too much dribbling and too many players that tried to go one on one. The Celtics are very hard to stop when they move the ball and run their offense. They have so many weapons that if they share the ball and find the open man, they can get good shots, even against good defenses.
The Celtics must move the ball and run their offense.

Bench Play - The Celtics bench must come through for them in this series. Tony spent much of the game in foul trouble. Sheed came close to a melt down.  Tony did a decent job on Kobe when he wasn't sitting out with foul trouble. They all must step up and play their best if the Celtics are to win this series.

Hustle - The Lakers out hustled the Celtics in just about every category. They beat the Celtics to loose balls, rebounds and all the 50-50 plays. The Lakers clearly showed that they wanted it more than the Celtics did. The Celtics have got to show more energy and hustle in game 2 in order to win.

Officiating and Desire
The officials called game 1 fairly evenly, but they also called it very tight. The Celtics couldn't play their brand of defense without picking up quick fouls. Hopefully, the officials will let them play a little more, which will benefit the Celtics. Also, the Celtics must show that they want it more by playing harder in this one. The Lakers showed in game 1 that they wanted it more. The Celtics must bounce back and show that they want this one more by playing harder and hustling to win all the 50/50 plays.