at Sacramento Kings (17-29) at Boston Celtics (21-23)
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
7:30 PM ET
Regular Season Game #45, Home Game #24
TV: CSNNE, CSNCA, NBA-LP 754/755
Radio: WEEI, CBS Sports
TD Garden Probable Starters PG SG SF PF C
Avery Bradley/ Courtney Lee/ Paul Pierce/ Jared Sullinger/ Kevin Garnett Boston Reserves
Leandro Barbosa Injuries
Rajon Rondo (knee) out Red Claws
Fab MeloProbable Starters PG SG SF PF C
Isaiah Thomas/ Tyreke Evans /John Salmons /Jason Thompson/ DeMarcus Cousins Reserves
Jason Thompson Injuries
DeMarcus Cousins, Chuck Hayes and Rajon Rondo all attended the University of Kentucky
Marcus Thornton and Brandon Bass attended Louisiana State University
Kings Assistant Coach Bobby Jackson and Brandon Bass were teammates in New Orleans during the 2006-07 season…
Jimmer Fredette and Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge both attended Brigham Young University.Game Notes
The Celtics will host the Sacramento Kings in their first game after learning they will be without Rondo for the rest of the season. There has been some talk of Keyon Dooling possibly returning to the team and in the meantime, they will stick with a point guard by committee. Expect Paul Pierce, Jeff Green, Avery Bradley, Courtney Lee, Leandro Barbosa and Jason Terry all to share ball handling duties. Doc will probably simplify the offense a bit without Rondo to call the plays on the court.
This is the second of 2 meetings between these two teams. In the first meeting in Sacramento, the Celtics gave a very lackluster performance. Rondo was outplayed by Isaiah Thomas. DeMarcus Cousins logged his first career triple double. And, most importantly, the Celtics lost 118-96. They will look to avenge that loss as they take them on at home.
The Celtics have won 4 in a row in Boston vs the Kings. Both teams are looking for their second straight win and both teams are 4-6 in their last 10 games. The Celtics are 14-9 at home while the Kings are 5-17 on the road.
Without Rondo, the Celtics should take on a different look. Lee and Sullinger will remain in the starting lineup with Pierce, KG and Bradley. Even without Rondo, if the team gives the same effort they did against the Heat, they should get a win in this one. Key Matchups
Courtney Lee vs Tyreke Evans
Evans is an explosive player and Lee needs to play tough defense on him. Hopefully, Courtney will continue to be as aggressive on both ends of the court as he was in the Heat game.
Kevin Garnett vs DeMarcus Cousins.
Cousins is a tough and physical player but he's also a young player and a volatile player. Who knows what would happen if KG gets into his head. In spite of 3 suspensions already this season, he is a big part of the Kings' game plan and he is averaging 17.6 points and 10.4 rebounds. KG has to do a better job of guarding Cousins than they did in their first meeting when Cousins recorded his first career triple-double (12 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists). Keys to the Game Defense
- Defense is a key to every game and it will be the key to winning the championship. The Celtics must defend the perimeter as the Kings can be hot from the outside. They also must defend the paint to keep them from getting tip ins and easy baskets. Crash the boards
- The Celtics need to rebound the basketball. It takes effort and desire to out rebound the opposing team and when they show the effort and desire on the boards, it usually transfers to the rest of their game as well. When the Celtics lost to the Kings in Sacramento, they were outrebounded 45-35. They have to do better if they want to win this one.
Start Strong and Play 48 Minutes
- The Celtics need to get off to a good start. The Kings are 13-4 when leading at the half and just 3-25 when trailing at the half. The Celtics need to get off to a good start and then not let up. They have to stay focused for 48 minutes. X-Factor
The Rondo Effect
The Celtics have had a few days to digest the fact that they will be without Rondo for the rest of the season. After practice, Doc said that everyone will need to step up to fill the void that Rondo leaves with his absence. Pierce and Jeff Green will need to handle the ball more along with guards Bradley, Barbosa, Lee, and Terry. How well they do that and how quickly will tell a lot about this team and how the rest of their season will go.