Celtics host Bobcats looking for their 5th straight win

Sam Sharpe-US PRESSWIRE

The Celtics continue their 3 game home stand as the Bobcats come to town for the first of 3 meetings between these two teams.

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Charlotte Bobcats (3-4) at Boston Celtics (4-4)
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
7:30 PM ET
Regular Season Game #9 Home Game #4
TV: CSN-NE, SSO-CHA, NBA-LP 756(DTV)/753(XFinity)
Radio: 98.5 Sports Hub, WFNZ, WBZ
TD Garden
Referees: Mike Callahan, Courtney Kirkland, Violet Palmer

Game Thread l Chat

CLNS Post Game Show
Call into the Studio: 347-215-7771 | Listen Live

The Celtics continue their 3 game home stand as the Bobcats come to town for the first of 3 meetings between these two teams. Former Celtic Al Jefferson joined the Bobcats this off season and will start at center for them.

The Bobcats are 9-23 all time vs the Celtics and 3-13 all time in Boston. They split the season series last year 2-2 but were unable to win at the Garden. For some reason, the Celtics have struggled with the Bobcats since they came into the league. The Bobcats may not have won a lot against the Celtics, but they always seem to give them a hard time and make them work for their wins.

The Bobcats return the same starting lineup as last season with the exception of Al Jefferson at the center position. That should give them some continuity. Bobcats coach, Steve Clifford returned for their last game just three days after he had two stents placed in his heart. The Bobcats lost to Atlanta for their second straight defeat.

The Celtics are mostly new to each other and have a new coach but have come together and are playing as a team and have won 4 in a row. They had 7 players in double figures in their last game and if they play like that again in this game, they should win this one.

Jared Sullinger has a bone bruise on his knee and is listed as day to day. If he can't go, Kris Humphries has played well and will most likely get his minutes.

Don't forget to tune in to the CLNS Post Game Show immediately after the game. Your broadcast crew is Nick Gelso and Ty Ray. MTV's Matthew Fahey will be making his a premier tonight as a member of the CLNS Celtics Post Game Crew. Sean Bakke will be stationed in the chatroom at CelticsBlog and manning the CLNS Radio social media outlets. As always, we will be taking your calls throughout the entire broadcast.

Probable Starters

PG SG SF PF C

Jordan Crawford.....Avery Bradley....Jeff Green....Brandon Bass....Kelly Olynyk

Celtics Reserves

MarShon Brooks

Jordan Crawford

Kris Humphries

Vitor Faverani

Phil Pressey

Courtney Lee

Phil Pressey

Keith Bogans

Gerald Wallace

Injuries

Rajon Rondo (ACL)out

Jared Sullinger (knee) day to day

Probable Starters

PG SG SF PF C

Kemba Walker....Gerald Henderson....Michael Kidd-Gilchrist....Josh McRoberts....Al Jefferson

Bobcats Reserves

Bismack Biyombo

Jeff Taylor

Cody Zeller

Ramon Sessions

Anthony Tolliver

Jeff Adrien

Ben Gordon

Jannero Pargo

James Southerland

Injuries

Brendon Haywood (foot) out

Key Matchups

va

Jordan Crawford vs Kemba Walker

Walker leads the Bobcats with 16.6 points per game. Crawford and Bradley must combine to slow him down and keep him from getting the team into their sets.

vs

Kelly Olynyk vs Al Jefferson

Big Al is very good in the low post, although he is still getting into game shape after being out with a sprained ankle. Kelly will need to play solid defense or he will get burned.

Honorable Mention

Avery Bradley vs Gerald Henderson

Henderson is averaging 14 points per game this season, but he always seems to get up to play the Celtics. He is averaging 20.0 points on 52.9 percent shooting over his last six games against the Celtics.

Keys to the Game

Team Play - The Celtics have been winning because they have been playing together and trusting each other. They need to continue team play and working together.

Set the Pace- The Celtics have been setting the pace in games and running for whole games. To quote Tommy, when they run, good things happen.


Take Care of the Ball
- The Celtics win streak has coincided with a reduction in their turnovers. They need to continue to take care of the ball and limit their turnovers.

Rebound - The Celtics have been holding their own on the boards. They must crash the boards as a team.

Defense- The Celtics have been playing very good defense and need to continue to defend as a team.

X-Factors

Confidence and Team Play

The Celtics seem to be building confidence with every win. Can they continue to play as a team and trust each other, or will they lapse into a half court game where it's each for his own?


Official Report
Mike Callahan
A veteran of 23 NBA seasons, Mike Callahan has officiated 1,365 regular season, 130 Playoff and 14 NBA Finals games. He was a member of the crews that officiated the 2007 NBA All-Star Game, 1994 Mexico Challenge and the 1996 Schick Rookie Game. Prior to joining the NBA, Callahan spent three years officiating in the CBA, including the 1989
and 1990 CBA Finals. A member of the Cardinal O’Hara High School basketball team for four years, Callahan also coached the freshman basketball team after graduating.

Callahan has run a clinic for referees called "Hoops4Heros" that benefits local fire departments, and he maintains strong ties to the Philadelphia community through his volunteer work with the Don Guanella School for developmentally disabled boys.

Callahan is one of 4 refs to come out of Cardinal O'Hara High School in Pennsylvania. The other 3 are Joey Crawford, Ed Malloy and Tim Donaghy. Callahan was one of the referees mentioned in an incident in Tim Donaghy's book. He and other refs would regularly wager with their fellow refs over things like who would call the first foul, who could give out the first tech, etc. Makes you wonder what game they might be playing tonight.

The Celtics are 5-5 over their last 10 games with Callahan officiating. In a win over the Jazz last season, Callahan's officiating inspired a classic rant by Tommy about an especially bad traveling call he made on Jeff Green. Against Denver last season, the Celtics shot 16 free throws to 36 for the Nuggets and the officiating was terrible. In other games last season, the officiating was ok. As with most refs, he can be good or he can be very, very bad. The Bobcats are 2-8 over their last 10 with Callahan on the court. He usually lets the teams play and isn't a tyrant with the whistle but still makes some head scratching calls from time to time. His home W/L record this season is 5-1.

Courtney Kirkland
Over the past 13 seasons, Courtney Kirkland has officiated 786 regular season games and six playoff games. He also officiated two seasons in the WNBA, including the 2000 WNBA Finals and the 1999 Conference Finals. Kirkland also officiated the 2010 and 2011 Venezuelan LPB basketball championships. Prior to joining the NBA, Kirkland also worked three seasons in the CBA where he officiated the 1999 and 2000 CBA Finals as well as the 2000 CBA All-Star Game. He was a high school official for four years as a member of the Baton Rouge (La.) Basketball Officials Association and was
named Rookie Official of the Year in 1994.

Kirkland earned a degree in Computer Science from Southern University. He was a member of the Northwestern High School basketball team that made it to the state semifinals in 1991 and 1992. Kirkland received the school’s Academic award, and led the team in assists, free throw and three-point shooting percentage. Off the court, Kirkland created the Kennedy Leigh Kirkland Memorial Scholarship Fund in 2005 in memory of his daughter, who passed away at the young age of 6 weeks. The Scholarship Fund was created to provide educational assistance to siblings of children who have passed away.

Kirkland earned some measure of notoriety when he jumped in to block a Kris Humphries free throw in a Nets game last season. The Celtics are 7-3 in their last 10 games that Kirkland officiated. The first two games he called last season were evenly officiated with no calls standing out either way. The 3rd game last season was against the Pacers in which the Celtics shot 18 free throws to 28 for the Pacers. They called a flagrant 2 on KG which was later downgraded and the officiating was terrible. The officiating in his last two games last season was again good. The Bobcats are 5-5 in their last 10 games with Kirkland. His home W/L record this season is 5-2.

Violet Palmer
Violet Palmer, one of the first two female officials in the NBA, has officiated 839 regular season games and has appeared in nine playoff games over the past 16 seasons. Before joining the NBA, Palmer officiated in the WNBA during the league’s inaugural season, including the 1997 WNBA Finals. She has two years of CBA officiating experience and nine years of collegiate officiating experience, including women’s games in the Pac-10, Western Athletic, West Coast, Big Sky, and Big West Conferences, as well as five NCAA Final Fours and two NCAA Championship games.

Before becoming an official, Palmer was a successful basketball player both at the collegiate and high school levels. She was a four-year letter winner at Cal. Poly Pomona, where her team won the NCAA Division II Finals in 1985 and 1986. In addition, she was on the basketball team at Compton High School.

Off the court, Palmer is a CCA Manual Mechanics committee member. She also is involved with the City of Los Angeles Youth Referee Clinic in her hometown of Los Angeles. Palmer also acts as a coordinator for both the West Coast Conference and the Pac-12 Conference.

At one time Violet was the worst ref in the league. In one game Cedric Maxwell was moved to urge her to go back into the kitchen because her calls were so bad. She has had Tommy close to exploding many times as well. She's improved a lot over the years and is no longer the worst ref in the league (that honor goes to Bennett Salvatore with a host of runners up) but she's still not a very good ref. Although, after getting a hug from Pierce after he ran into her in a win over the Pacers two seasons ago, the Celtics took 20 more free throws than the Pacers.

The Celtics are 6-4 over their last 10 games with Violet on the court. One win last season was at the Knicks where the Celtics took 20 free throws to 26 for the Knicks. At one point, Violet made a series of bad calls prompting Tommy to yell, "Violet, you're a fraud!" The other games last season were evenly officiated without any calls standing out one way or the other. The Bobcats are 3-7 over their last 10 with Violet. Her home W/L record this season is 3-2.

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