These are two teams that made HUGE shake-ups at the TRADE deadline, only difference is Houston is still fighting for a play-off spot, while the C's are still trying to keep hold of #1 in the EAST... Both teams got rid of defensive anchors at the deadline (Houston - Shane Battier Boston - Kendrick Perkins)
Pierce was held to 5-12 shooting behind Battier's stellar defense, but Pierce should be able to get whatever he wants tonight, with the young, defenseless Chase Budinger guarding him.... They should give the ball to Pierce all night long
KG also should have a rather easy night, he will be guarded by a rookie from Kentucky by the name of Patrick Patterson, as I said last night, Rondo and KG should exploit this match-up all night long. Louis Scola was reported not to play tonight, but he is going to go through shoot-around and see how he feels, I say he's questionable for this one.
The Last time these teams met:
The Celtics walked into this game lethargic since they found out Houston's leading scorer Kevin Martin wasn't going to be in the line-up... They paid the price and let Aaron Brooks get HOT and lead Houston to a 108-102 victory.. Shane Battier and Aaron Brooks both were still wearing Rockets Red... Shane Held Pierce to 5-12 shooting, After the loss Boston went on to win 6 in a row...
Boston should come out firing on all cylinders, including Defense, this is not a team you want to give confidence to and start running, they are fast.. Rondo must come out today and dictate the flow and Boston should come away with an 8+ point victory. Rondo wont be going against the best PG in the world, but he will be going against a PG that never gives up, and will give you his best all night long in Kyle Lowry
Get the ball to: KG and Pierce
Louis Scola is doubtful for this game which would put KG up against an undersized, rookie Power Forward from Kentucky, Patrick Patterson, Again Rondo and KG should exploit this match-up, Rondo should get 10 assists by going to this match-up
Shane Battier was traded at the Trade Deadline, which means Pierce wont go for 5-12 this time, Pierce can get whatever he wants against Chase Budinnger, but he will have his hands full defensively, Chase can get very hot... Anything less than 15pts from Pierce in a win is a failure..
Shaquille O'neal (out)
Jermaine O'neal (out)
Von Wafer (out)
Louis Scola (doubtful)
Terrence Williams (out)
My Prediction: Boston wins 102 - 90
(I will be attending this game, this will be my first time seeing the C's up close... I cant wait... Follow me @BosCelticsFans on twitter, and I'll upload pics...)