Boston Celtics host Milwaukee Bucks for their home opener

Jared Wickerham

The Celtics will host the Bucks tonight in their home opener. with both teams looking for their first win of the season.

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Milwaukee Bucks (0-1) at Boston Celtics (0-1)
Friday, November 1, 2013
Regular Season Game #1, Home Game #1
TV: CSNNE, WBZ, NBA-LP (DTV 758)(Xfinity 754, 765)
Radio: 98.5 The Sports Hub, AM620 WTMJ
TD Garden

Referees: Joey Crawford, Ben Taylor, Leon Wood

Game Thread l Chat

CLNS Post Game Show

Call into the Studio: 347-215-7771 | Listen Live


The Celtics will host the Bucks tonight in their home opener. with both teams looking for their first win of the season. Both the Celtics and the Bucks will be looking to play with some consistency and and iron out the wrinkles that come from trading marquee players and adding new players to the team.

With Brandon Jennings traded to Detroit and Monta Ellis in Dallas and with Luke Ridnour, Brandon Knight and O.J. Mayo added to the mix, they are dealing with some of the same issues that the Celtics need to also overcome. At least the Bucks starting line up appears to be solidified.

The Celtics starting lineup is still up in the air. I have a feeling that it's going to be awhile before we actually know who will be starting each game. The starting lineup below is once again from the Game Notes. I think they just go with the starters from the previous game. I'm going to take a guess and say that in this game Stevens will start

Jordan Crawford

Avery Bradley

Jeff Green

Jared Sullinger

Kelly Olynyk

Crawford was playing the point on the green team in practice. And after Wednesday's game, Stevens said something about had Sully been available he might have started Kelly next to him. So, I'm taking a wild guess on my pick. Maybe we should have a predict the starting lineup contest for every game.

Like the Celtics, the Bucks have several new players and are trying to build past being a middle of the pack team. This is a very winnable game if the Celtics come in and play with energy for 48 minutes.

As the Brad Stevens' and his new team, makes their home debut at TD Garden tonight. The CLNS/CelticsBlog crew will have all of your game coverage handled. Your broadcast crew is Ty Ray and Mike "the Scotsman" Munger. Brian Langford will be stationed in the chat-room at CelticsBlog and manning the CLNS social media outlets. Nick Gelso, B-Paul, and Sean Bakke will all be checking in from TD Garden following the game.


Possible Starters
??????

PG: Avery Bradley

SG: Gerald Wallace

SF: Jeff Green

PF: Brandon Bass

C: Vitor Faverani

Celtics Reserves

MarShon Brooks

Jordan Crawford

Kris Humphries

Kelly Olynyk

Phil Pressey

Jared Sullinger

Courtney Lee

Injuries

Rajon Rondo (ACL)out

Avery Bradley (head) day to day

Phil Pressey (ankle) day to day

Keith Bogans (thumb) day to day


Players to Watch

Jeff Green had a big game and showed the aggressiveness that the Celtics need from him in the first game. The big test will be whether he can do it two games in a row.

Honorable Mention

Jared Sullinger

After serving a suspension in the first game, this will be Jared's first regular season game. The Celtics need his presence under the basket and his rebounding.


Probable Starters


Bucks Reserves

Nate Wolters

Ersan Ilyasova

Gary Neal

Zaza Pachulia

Giannis Antetokounmpo

John Henson

Miroslav Raduljica

Luke Ridnour

Injuries

Carlos Delfino (foot) out

Ekpe Udoh (knee) out


Players to Watch

After being courted by the Celtics for the past couple of seasons, OJ Mayo is now with the Bucks. He is capable of scoring in bunches if not defended well.


Honorable Mention

Larry Sanders

Last season, Larry Sanders had a couple of big games against the Celtics. He had 18 points and 16 rebounds in one game and 20 rebounds in another. Hopefully the Celtics bigs can contain him in this one.

Keys to the Game

Attack the Paint - In their first game, the Bucks were outscored in the paint 50-28 by the Knicks. The Celtics need to attack the hoop and not settle for jumpers.

Rebound- The Celtics must attack the boards on both ends of the court. They have to grab offensive rebounds to give themselves more second chance points and they must grab defensive rebounds to keep the Bucks from getting those second chances.

Make Layups - In every game so far, the Celtics have missed way too many bunnies. What should be easy points end up being turnovers or missed opportunities. They have to find a way to make those layups.

Defense - Defense is always a key to winning.

X-Factor

Home Court Advantage

This is the Celtics home opener. The fans will still be hyped from the Red Sox victory on Wednesday and should give the team a nice lift with their energy.

Official Report
Joey Crawford

Over more than three decades in the NBA, Joe Crawford has officiated 2,436 regular season and 318 Playoff games, including 48 NBA Finals games. Crawford’s Playoff and NBA Finals totals are the most among active NBA officials. Over his career, Crawford has officiated the 1986, 1992 and 2000 NBA All-Star Games, as well as the 1993 McDonald’s Championship in Munich, Germany. Prior to joining the NBA, Crawford officiated in the Eastern League (CBA) from 1974-76. He graduated from Cardinal O’Hara High School in Springfield, Pa. and is a member of the Cardinal O’Hara High School Hall of Fame. In 2008, Crawford earned a degree in Liberal studies from Neumann College. Officiating can be considered a Crawford "family affair," as his brother is veteran Major League Baseball umpire Jerry Crawford, and his father is retired Major League Baseball umpire Shag Crawford. He is also very active in his hometown of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

There is no shortage of controversy surrounding Joey Crawford, the biggest of which was a suspension for tossing Tim Duncan for laughing on the bench and then challenging him to a fight. He is known for his quickness to call technical fouls but also doesn't tend to be influenced by the home crowd as much as many younger refs seem to be. In the 2008 Playoffs, Crawford was chosen to officiate Game 4 of the Western Conference final between the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers. In the closing seconds of the game, there was a no-call where the Spurs' Brent Barry was unquestionably fouled by Derek Fisher. Crawford was the closest official to the call, and the NBA later apologized for the lack of a call. Crawford was also one of the refs who was involved in the income tax evasion convictions and was suspended at that time as well.

He is widely viewed as one of the refs in the NBA who can officiate with an agenda and shows his biases on the court, hence the controversy that seems to follow him throughout his career. The Celtics are 5-5 in their last 10 games with Crawford. Last season, he called the 89-86 win over the Wizards in which the Wizards shot 17 free throws to 13 for the Celtics and the refs pretty much let them play. He also called the 101-95 win over Chicago where the Bulls shot 31 free throws to 16 for the Celtics and there were more than a few questionable calls. The 3rd game last season was the OT win over the Mavs in which the Celtics shot 30 free throws to 17 for the Mavs and the calls seemed to favor the Celtics for the most part. One loss last season was against the Grizzlies in which Memphis took 22 free throws to 16 for the Celtics but the officiating was good for the most part. The second loss was to the Knicks where the Celtics shot 28 free throws to 20 for the Knicks. Again, the officiating was good for the most part. Another game that Crawford called was the win over the Suns where both teams shot 23 free throws and the officiating was good. The final game last season was a one point loss to the Hornets where the Hornets took 26 free throws to 17 for the Celtics and the calls seemed to favor the Hornets. Joey Crawford is like a box of candy. You never know what you're going to get on any given night. He is one referee in the league who doesn't seem to be influenced by the home crowd. In fact, at times he seems to delight in antagonizing the home fans.

Ben Taylor
Ben Taylor is one of two new officials for the 2013-14 season. Taylor joins the full-time staff after six seasons as a referee in the NBA D-League, already having offciated 17 regular season NBA games as a non-staff official. He also serves as an FIBA International Basketball Referee.

While at Middle Tennessee State University, where he received a BA in Public Relations, Taylor was a member of the Theta Iota Chapter of Sigma Nu Fraternity, where he coordinated many events, headlined by the Multiple Sclerosis Society’s "Bike to Jack and Back" as the Philanthropic chair.

Taylor has officiated two games for the Celtics previously. They are 1-1 in those games. The win was over Toronto where the Raptors took 36 free throws to 34 for the Celtics. The loss was to Detroit where the Celtics took 32 free throws to 29 for the Pistons. He has called one game for the Bucks, a win over the Bobcats. There are two new refs in the league and the Celtics have gotten one in each of their first two games.

Leon Wood
Leon Wood’s connection with the NBA began as a player when he played professionally with Philadelphia, Washington, New Jersey, San Antonio, Atlanta and Sacramento, averaging 6.4 points, 3.2 assists and 1.2 rebounds as a guard during his six-year NBA career. In addition to his NBA playing career, Wood was a member of the Gold Medal winning 1984 United States Olympic Basketball Team, and he won another Gold Medal in the 1983 Pan-Am Games.

During his 17-season NBA officiating career, he has worked 1,052 regular season games and 20 playoff games. Wood has three years of CBA officiating experience and one year of collegiate officiating experience in the Ohio Valley and Trans America Athletic Conferences. He also has one year of high school officiating experience in California. Wood played for the University of Arizona for one season before transferring to Cal State Fullerton, where he was named All-American. The native of Santa Monica, Calif. is an inductee into the Orange County Hall of Fame, and in 1998, Wood was inducted into the Cal State Fullerton Hall of Fame. Wood was a member of the basketball team at St. Monica High School.

You would think that being a former player, Wood would try to be fair but he has been a mediocre ref at best. The Celtics are 5-5 over their last 10 games with Wood officiating. In his first game with the Celtics last season, the Bulls shot 24 free throws to 19 for the Celtics and the officiating was fairly good. In his second game vs Atlanta, the Hawks shot 17 free throws to 20 for the Celtics and the refs pretty much let them play. In the third game last season, the Celtics shot 21 free throws to 12 for the Wizards and the 50/50 calls seemed to go the Celtics' way. He also called the loss at Philadelpha where the Celtics shot 23 free throws to 27 for the Sixers and the officiating was okay. The Bucks are 8-2 over their last 10 games called by Wood.

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