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Straying From the System

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One of the potholes that helped run the Celtics off the road when they lost to the Spurs on Sunday came in the form of individual efforts taking precedent over team-based play. While there has been a considerable amount of reaction to Sunday night's debacle, the Celtics themselves remain confident (Via the Boston Herald):

"I don't look on this as a step back for us," said Paul Pierce. "I look at it as a night when you (strayed from) your system, and now you have to get back to it."

"I have confidence in this team because of the preparation I see every day," said Ray Allen. "But what happens is that you want it so bad that sometimes you end up trying to do it yourself."

Unilateral actions can be a problem on this team. Pierce will drop his head, take his eyes off his teammates and force his way to the rim. Overall, they all will take the lead of Nate Robinson, who knows of no other way to play.

But the condition, according to Allen, is temporary.

"You'll see the guys in the gym tomorrow talking about it," he said. "I've been on teams that were so bad, at this time of year guys already had their vacation plans made, and that's what they would be talking about.

"But this team is so far from that, I'm not worried."