at Boston Celtics (3-3) at Chicago Bulls (4-2)
Monday, November 11
8:00 PM ET
Game #7, Road Game #4
TV: CSNNE, CSN-C, NBA-LP 754(C's)/755(Chi)
Radio: WEEI, WMVP
United CenterProbable Starters PG: Rajon Rondo..................................................SG Jason Terry C: Kevin Garnett SF: Paul Pierce ................................. ............PF Brandon BassCeltics Reserves
Avery Bradley (shoulders) outProbable Starters PG: Nate Robinson ............................................. SG: Rip Hamilton C: Joakim Noah SF: Luol Deng .................................................. PF: Carlos Boozer Bulls Reserves
Vladmir Radmanovic Injuries
Derrick Rose (knee) out
Kirk Hinrich (hip) questionable Team Connections
Bulls Head Coach Tom Thibodeau was a member of the Celtics coaching staff from 2007-10 and was a member of the 2008 NBA Championship coaching staff
Bulls Assistant Coaches Ed Pinckney (1988-94) and Adrian Griffin (1999-2001) played for the Celtics
Jason Collins and Kirk Hinrich were teammates in Atlanta from 2010-12
Jeff Green, Chris Wilcox and Bulls Assistant Coach Adrian Griffin were teammates in Seattle during the 2007-08 season
Green and Nazr Mohammed were teammates in Oklahoma City during the 2010-11 season
Paul Pierce and Kirk Hinrich both attended Kansas
Rajon Rondo, Nazr Mohammed and Marquis Teague all attended Kentucky
Jason Terry and Nazr Mohammed were teammates in Atlanta from 2000-04
Terry and Bulls Assistant Coach Adrian Griffin were teammates in Dallas during the 2005-06 season
Chris Wilcox and Nate Robinson were teammates in New York during the 2008-09 season
Wilcox and Rip Hamilton were teammates in Detroit from 2009-11
Celtics Head Coach Doc Rivers and Jimmy Butler both attended Marquette
Nate Robinson played for the Celtics during the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons
Darko Milicic and Rip Hamilton were teammates in Detroit from 2003-06
Nate Robinson and Darko Milicic were teammates in New York during the 2009-10 season.Key Matchups
Kevin Garnett vs Joakim Noah
Noah brings a lot of energy to the Bulls and he is a presence in the paint. KG has to match his energy. In the past, Noah has been able to get to the basket at will for rebounds and tip ins. He is also blocking 2.5 shots a game. KG has got to box him out and defend the paint. This might be a good game for Doc to give Darko or Collins some run if Noah starts to go wild inside.
Rajon Rondo vs Nate Robinson
With Derrick Rose still out and Kirk Hinrich questionable after injuring his hip in their last game, the start may fall to Nate Robinson. After playing together and guarding each other in practice when Nate was with the Celtics, these two know each other's games quite well. But as much as Nate might know Rondo's game, the advantage goes to Rondo in this one.
Paul Pierce vs Luol Deng
Pierce and Deng are always a fun matchup to watch. Deng is long and a very good defender and has been able to bother Pierce in the past. He will make Pierce work for his points. Deng has also been scoring well and is the Bulls leading scorer at 17.7 ppg and has averaged over 24 points per game in his last 3 games vs Boston. .
The Celtics once again will try to get above .500 as they visit the Chicago Bulls. This is the first of 4 meetings between these two teams. The Bulls have won 5 straight vs the Celtics at the United Center. They won the series 3-1 last season. This is the 4th game of a 5 game homestand for the Bulls. and the third game in 4 nights for the Celtics.
The Bulls are coached by former Celtics assistant and defensive guru, Tom Thibodeau. It follows that they hang their hat on their defense. They are 4th in the league allowing just 88.67 points per game on 42% shooting. The Celtics, on the other hand have struggled with their defense so far this season, allowing 99.5 points per game on 45.5% shooting.
Both teams are coming off a win. The Celtics beat the Bucks 106-100 on the road, while the Bulls beat the Wolves 87-80 at home. Both teams are in the middle of the pack when it comes to turnovers. The Celtics commit 15 per game while the Bulls commit 15.17.
Both teams are looking for their second straight win. The Celtics have dropped to 4th in the Atlantic division while the Bulls are leading the Central division. The Bulls are 3-2 at home while the Celtics are 2-1 on the road.
Doc started Jason Terry and Brandon Bass in the last game and they won, so he may start the same lineup in this game. Then again, he may not. These days, while Doc is trying to find the right mix of players, it's hard to predict who will be in the starting lineup on any given night.
Keys to the Game Rebound
- The Celtics are once again 29th in rebounding, grabbing just 37.8 per game while the Bulls are 11th with 43.17 rebounds per game. The Celtics have to box out and keep Noah from getting easy tip ins and to keep the Bulls from piling up the second chance baskets. The Celtics have got to crash the boards as a team and not just expect the bigs to get the rebounds. They are much more effective when the guards go up strong after rebounds as well.
- Defense has been the Celtics strength in recent years. It has also been a strength for the Bulls. So far this season, the Celtics have struggled on defense while the Bulls have been playing tough on the defensive end. The Celtics need to match the defensive intensity of the Bulls if they want to come out of this game with a win. Be Aggressive
- It's no secret that the more aggressive team is gets the calls and usually the win. The Celtics must start out being aggressive and that starts with Rondo. They have to be aggressive on the boards, in defending, in going after loose balls, and especially in getting inside to the basket instead of settling for outside jumpers. X-Factors
Chemistry and Effort
The Celtics need to continue to try to develop their chemistry. Hopefully Doc will find the right rotations to allow them to succeed. Also, the effort must be there for every player, especially on the second unit.