Celtics get crushed on the boards, continue to be inconsistent

After embarrassing the Washington Wizards 111-78 in an overall dominant performance in their final home game before starting a five-game road trip, the Celtics were severely outplayed by the Orlando Magic last night. The C's lacked their typical defensive intensity and were out rebounded 54-34. If you were hoping for the team to carry some of that positive momentum from the Washington win over to the game against Orlando, you were surely disappointed.

The rebounding situation is a concerning one. This team is at its best when it can control the boards and dictate the pace of play. If the C's can limit the number of shots their opponents get by finishing off good defensive possessions with a rebound, they can get out and run the floor and push the tempo, which plays into their strengths. Offensive rebounds undermine what this team is trying to do on the offensive end of the floor.

Against the Magic, though, Boston allowed 17 offensive rebounds that led to 26 second-chance points. Even when the Celtics got on a little bit of a role in their attempts to get back into the game, an offensive rebound and an extra possession for Orlando would kill any momentum they had:

According to NBA.com, the Celtics average 48.7 rebounds per game in their wins and only 39.1 in their losses. Now there were certainly other factors that contributed to a losing effort, but this stat says a lot about how this team needs to play in order to be successful. It also exemplifies how inconsistent the C's can be from game-to-game.

After winning in such a commanding fashion over the Wizards last Friday night, how could the same team come out and look so overmatched against an Orlando group that they should've beaten? Was it simply an off night? Or is this a sign of things to come in regard to the team's ability to remain consistent over the course of an entire season?

Photo Credit: Scott Audette/AP Photo
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