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Celtics Take on Pacers in Indy

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Boston Celtics (5-0) at Indiana Pacers (3-3)
Tuesday, November 13
7:00 PM ET
TV:  NBA LP ch 753, FSI, CSN
Conseco Fieldhouse 
 

Game Thread   l  Chat  

Pacers Blogs:   Indy Cornrows   l  Pacers Pulse

Keys to the Game:
Defense:
    This is the key to every game and to winning the championship.  The Celtics must continue to make defense their calling card and work at shutting other teams down.  When their defense lets up, the rest of their game seems to falter as well. 

Limit Turnovers:   The Celtics did much better in the last game limiting the themselves to 11 turnovers after committing 20 or more in several games.  Turnovers lead to easy baskets for the opposing team so it is important to take care of the ball.

Ball movement:     The Celtics offense has been so effective because they have been moving the ball and finding the open man.  When the ball movement slows and they go into ISO's they aren't near as effective. 

Game Notes   The Pacers are coached by former Celtics coach, Jim O'Brien.  He would love nothing better than to beat his old club as he left the Celtics on less than a positive note.  The Pacers also eliminated the Celtics from the playoffs in their last two trips there and there is a bit of a rivalry brewing between the two teams.  There is also the GM factor with former Celtics Larry Bird and Danny Ainge vying for bragging rights.  It is on the road and Conseco Fieldhouse is a tough arena for visiting teams. Also, the Pacers have a height advantage everywhere but at PF.    The Celtics should be getting Posey and Scal back from injury which will give the bench a lift. Although,  Big Baby more than adequately filled on for Scal and may be the better option.   Great teams win on the road and so this will be yet another test for the Celtics.

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Probable starters
PG:  Rajon Rondo (6'1") vs Jamaal Tinsley (6'3")
SG:  Ray Allen (6'5") vs Mike Dunleavy (6'9")
SF:   Paul Pierce (6'7") vs Danny Granger (6'8")
PF:   Kevin Garnett (6'11") vs Jermaine O'Neal (6'11")
C:     Kendrick Perkins (6'10") vs Troy Murphy (6'11")
Key Matchups   
  vs 
Kevin Garnett PPG 22.6 RPG 15.80 APG 6.0 EFF + 37.40
Jermaine O'Neal   PPG 13.8 RPG 7.80 APG 3.4 EFF + 14.40

O'Neal has moved from center to power forward this season and his numbers are down slightly.  Garnett should have the upper hand in this matchup but will need Perk's help to keep O'Neal out of the paint. 

  vs  
Paul Pierce  PPG 23.6 RPG 4.20 APG 4.6 EFF + 21.20
Danny Granger PPG 18.7 RPG 6.50 APG 1.8 EFF + 16.17

Granger is playing very well and always plays well against Pierce.  Pierce doesn't have to be the go to guy this year and should be able to concentrate on defending Granger.
Key off the Bench    
James Posey  - Posey's return tonight will give the bench a boost.  His leadership, defense and ability to hit the 3 all figure to be big for our bench this season.
Jeff Foster -  Foster always seems to have his best games against the Celtics.  He should have a bit more trouble with this version of the Celtic, though.