at Boston Celtics (29-26) at Portland Trailblazers (25-30)
Sunday, February 24, 2013
9:00 PM ET
Regular Season Game #56, Road Game #27
TV: CSNNE, KGW, NBA-LP 760
Radio: WEEI, KXTG
Rose Garden Throughout sports today, nearly every stadium or arena’s name has been sold to a corporate sponsor. In the NBA there are only a few arenas that are not like this, including the Portland Trailblazers home, the Rose Garden. Unlike most other teams in the NBA, the naming rights to the Trailblazers new home was not sold. The team decided to name the arena after Portland as it is known as the Rose City and used the word, garden, because the word was often used as part of old arenas’ names. The Portland Trailblazers played their first game at the Rose Garden on November 3, 1995 against the Vancouver Grizzlies.
Probable Starters Point Guard
Avery Bradley vs Damian Lillard
Courtney Lee vs Wes Matthews Small Forward
Paul Pierce vs Nicolas Batum Power Forward
Brandon Bass vs LaMarcus Aldridge Center
Kevin Garnett vs JJ Hickson Celtics Reserves
Jared Sullinger (back) out
Rajon Rondo (knee) outTrailblazers Bench
Elliot Williams (Achilles) outTeam Connections
LaMarcus Aldridge and Avery Bradley both attended the University of Texas
Wesley Matthews and Celtics Coach Doc Rivers both attended Marquette
Courtney Lee and Jared Jeffries were teammates in Houston during the 2010-11 season
Jason Terry and Sasha Pavlovic were teammates in Dallas during the 2010-11 season
Chris Wilcox and Jared Jeffries were teammates in New York during the 2008-09 season
Sasha Pavlovic played for the Celtics during the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons.Game Notes
The Celtics make their only trip to the Rose Garden this season for the 4th game of their 5 game road trip. This is the first of back to back games with the second in Utah on Monday. The Celtics won the first game in the series at TD Garden 96-78. The Celtics won the only meeting between these two teams last year, 104-86 at TD Garden.
The Celtics have won 6 in a row and 13 of the last 14 games from the Blazers. The 6 game win streak is the longest active losing streak against any opponent for the Blazers. The Celtics are the only team in the league to have a winning record in the Rose Garden (27-24). Portland is a pretty good home team with a 17-9 record. The Celtics have struggled on the road with a 9-17 record and won their first road game against the Western Conference on Friday against the Suns.
The Blazers are 2-8 in their last 10 games and the Celtics are 7-3 in their last 10. The Celtics are looking for their second straight win on this road trip while the Blazers are stuck in a 7 game losing streak that they would love to break out of. The Celtics should get a win in this game if they play aggressively and stay focused. They also will need another solid effort from the new guys. Key Matchups
Avery Bradley vs Damian Lillard
Lillard has been playing very well and is averaging 18.4 points, 6.5 assists and 3.2 rebounds per game. It will be up to Avery to slow him down.
Brandon Bass vs LaMarcus Aldridge
The Blazers are playing the 6'11" Aldridge at the 4 and the 6'9" Hickson at the 5. I expect Doc to put KG on the bigger Aldridge, who is averaging 20.8 points and 8.7 rebounds a game. Stopping Aldridge will be key. Keys to the Game Defense -
The biggest key to every game is defense. This is even more important on the road where the opponents get a boost from their fans and the Celtics will need to clamp down even tighter on defense. The Celtics must make defense their number 1 priority Rebound -
The Celtics are shorthanded in the middle, even with KG back. They have to make an extra effort to rebound as a team. When the Celtics put out the effort to out-rebound their opponents it usually results in a win. When they don't make the effort to rebound, it affects the effort in the other areas as well.Be Aggressive
- The Celtics need to be the more aggressive team. They were aggressive in going to the hoop against the Suns and they need to continue that in this game. They also have to be more aggressive on the boards, going for loose balls and on defense.
Effort and Focus
The Celtics are on the road and in order to win they need to be focused and put forth a solid effort from the opening tap to the final buzzer. On the road they can't afford to coast or put out less than 100% effort.