Number Theory: Quick Take-aways from Games 1 and 2
Marcus Morris should consider replacing the patronymic “SR” on the back of his jersey to a currently more appropriate and perhaps more marketable notation – “LV” for example.
That could be a recommended Speed Limit (in Roman Numerals) for Kyrie Irving’s flat earth … or it might represent a pending accomplishment.
You see, the Celtics’ rambunctious frontcourt swingman is just liable to set a new standard of Bob Beamon-esque proportions. He is on a pace to rack up 82 Foul Lane Violations for the season, since he’s managed to accrue one in each of the first two games.
He’s an Equal Opportunity Lane Violator, as well. He’s committed one at both ends of the floor, costing Aron Baynes a Q1 FT after having given Ben Simmons an extra crack at an and-1 in Q2 of the opener.
Have Commissioner Silver’s newest business partners set an over/under yet?
Another free throw-related anomaly has likewise occurred in each of Boston’s first two ballgames.
On the possession following a Jaylen Brown three-ball that gave the C’s their first and only Q4 lead last night, pesky Fred VanVleet converted a drive while drawing a foul on Marcus Smart. He then retrieved his own missed free throw which led to a Norman Powell jumper.
The Stevens Crew had pulled off a similar, momentum tilting trick on their penultimate Q3 possession Tuesday night. Gordon Hayward split a pair of FT attempts, missing the second.
Wanna take a guess as to which teammate slithered inside to tip in Gordo’s miss … I’ll give ya a hint, LV.
Good News / Bad News
Last season, by my count, the 55-win Boston Celtics accumulated just 64 more total conversions than did their opponents, less than one per game
But in the matter of “Striping” (the bonus you “earn” from subtracting missed FT’s from made 3FG’s), the C’s were No. 5 in the league at +195 points.
The Celtics have been on the “good” side of the Stripe ledger in both starts so far, +11 vs. the 76ers and +4 despite losing to Toronto. (The Raptors out-converted us 50 – 44.)
That’s the good news … the bad news centers (where else?) at the foul line
Each opponent has attempted nine more FT’s than the men in green. In 2017-18, the Celtics were No. 16 in the league, attempting 0.62 fewer FT’s than their opposition per game. Last season in their 55 wins, the Celts were 26 – 26 – 3 in the matter of attempting more FT’s; in their 27 losses, they were 9 – 16 – 2.
So, Boston was 26 – 9 when shooting more FT’s, 26 – 16 when shooting fewer FT’s, 3-2 when even in FT’s.
Pace Yourselves, Boys
Through four days and 25 games, possessions league-wide calculate to 102.3 a game, compared to last season’s 98.0. Scoring has likewise risen from 106.3 to 111.9 ppg. Only five of 50 team performances have recorded fewer than 100 points
The Celtics have registered 203 possessions in two games – Q1’s have been particularly fast-paced, 29 and 27 possessions, respectively.