- HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors - http://www.hoopsworld.com -
Celtics still feel void from Rondo injury
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On April 25, 2013 @ 7:00 pm In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
The Boston Celtics will have to fix their offensive woes to get back in this series with the New York Knicks.
And it starts with defense.
“If we don’t get stops,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said, “then we can’t play because we don’t have ability to walk the ball up the floor under pressure and run our offense.”
Boston is a much better team pushing the ball in transition before the defense sets up, and that style of play can be traced to Rajon Rondo’s season-ending knee ligament tear Jan. 25 against the Atlanta Hawks.
Rondo’s injury left the Celtics without a true point guard and without a player who had complete command of the half-court offense. Rondo is the rare player who can dominate a game offensively without scoring.
He knows how to run the offense and how to keep the defense guessing and where to get Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett the ball to the Celtics are effective in half-court sets.
That’s all missing right now, and it’s obvious as the Knicks have stymied the Celtics’ offense and taken a 2-0 series lead. Game 3 is Friday (8 p.m. ET, ESPN).
Rivers long ago this season stopped lamenting Rondo’s absence.
“It’s who we are so I don’t worry about it,” Rivers said. “Listen, we are who we are. We can’t apologize for that. That’s what we’ve been left with. I think it’s good enough to win. So far, I haven’t gotten them in the right spots so I have to do that. We can play better and we have to play better.”
In the month after Rondo’s injury, the Celtics provided hope they could win without him. They went 14-4 in the first 18 games after his injury, and a forgettable meme began: not only could the Celtics win without Rondo, but they were better without him.
That is not true. The Celtics went 7-13 in the final 20 games of the season as Rivers saw problems. They started on the defensive end, where Boston allowed 103.8 points per 100 possessions.
Without Rondo, guard Avery Bradley handles the ball a majority of the time. But as Rivers points out, … [For more on Boston Celtics still feel void from Rajon Rondo injury, click here.]
Article printed from HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors: http://www.hoopsworld.com
URL to article: http://www.hoopsworld.com/boston-celtics-still-feel-void-from-rajon-rondo-injury
Copyright © 2013 HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors
Part of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group.