In a make-or-miss league, “Follow-Up” the bouncing ball
Lost amidst the overall tepid reaction to the C’s “a win is a win” Monday evening on the parquet was the 19 – 6 pasting the boys put on the sprightly South Floridians in “Follow-Up” points.
That +13 on the “F-U” chart was the sixth time this season Boston could boast of a double-digit edge in Offensive Board Production, their fifth victory under such conditions – the lone loss at home to the defending champs.
On the flip-side of that coin, the Celtics have been bested by 10+ F-U points in nine separate ballgames. Perhaps surprisingly, Brad’s crew has managed to win four times under those circumstances – including the surmounting of an 18-point F-Unky obstacle against the Cavs the first week in February.
The squad’s most F-U-ed effort of the season occurred just a couple of weeks ago in Charlotte when Kemba’s Jordanaires posted a 24 – 2 advantage on the offensive glass en-route to a seven-point win.
BTW, that’s not a typo in the previous sentence – the team scored TWO put-back points on a night they missed 49 FGA’s … on the FRONT end of a back-to-back!!!
But enough of the “gallows” humor – primarily because the overall statistics show our Celtics to be a much more capable rebounding squad than their reputation (and too frequent lapses which create such a rep) might tend to imply. Let’s look at the up-to date per-game data for Boston, its opponents, as well as the current league average:
Boston: 9.9 O-Boards, 34.6 D-Boards (OR% .218)
Opponent: 10.3 O-Boards, 35.5 D-Boards (OR% .229)
League: 10.3 O-Boards, 34.8 D-Boards (OR% .229)
Live-ball Team Rebounds – Hoops’ Most Neglected Number
By my count, a Celtic player has rebounded an errant shot 3,475 times this season, opposing players have done so on 3,570 occasions – a deficit of 95 scoring opportunities.
But in their 78 games to date, Boston has been awarded possession of the ball (or occasionally two free throws following a Loose-ball Foul) 372 times by way of a “Team Rebound” compared to 337 opponent TR’s.
So, for the season, the Celtics’ actual rebounding deficit is a mere 60 caroms – less than one per game.
Including these “Live-ball” TR’s, Boston has 2,894 Defensive Rebounds on the season to the other guys 2,901 … opponents hold a 1,004 – 953 edge at the opposite end of the floor.
And in the matter of total “F-U” points on the season, the C’s tally of 978 falls just 47 shy of opposition output.
While it may not have always been visually appealing, the C’s effort in this “dirty work” component of play has been far from inept, as we’ve been tempted to suppose from time to time.