Celtics-Hawks: Boston Dominates Atlanta, Takes 2-0 Series Lead

Sean Crowe@CroweKnowsSenior Writer IApril 23, 2008

If you’re going to call out the opposing team’s fans, the least you could do is not get repeatedly schooled by a second year point guard.

If you’re going to claim that Kendrick Perkins has no right to question your game one performance, the least you could do is not follow it up with the same type of performance in game two.

Mike Bibby succeeded in doing one thing—he gave the Boston crowd something to boo.  God knows the Celtics haven’t given them anything to boo this season.

Rajon Rondo continued his impressive playoff debut, filling up the stat sheet with twelve points, six rebounds, eight assists, and four steals. 

Kevin Garnett took control of Wednesday night's game early and never let go, finishing with his fifteenth straight playoff double-double (nineteen points and ten rebounds).

Atlanta made an effort to come out more aggressively in game two, and they were successful in adding some physicality that was missing in game one. 

For the first five minutes, it seemed to be working.

Paul Pierce was fouled hard early and left the game, in what was a scary moment for Celtic fans.  Pierce ended up with a strained back, but was able to return in the second quarter and finished with fourteen points.

After two convincing and relatively easy victories, Doc Rivers is in the enviable position of having to nitpick things to complain about in practice tomorrow.

“If we’re guilty of anything,” said Celtic guard Ray Allen “it’s being too enthusiastic out there on the floor.” 

If they are guilty of anything, it’s certainly not showing in the final score.

The Celtics have now succeeded in holding the Hawks to 81 and 77 points in the first two games of the series.  As we noted after game one, the Hawks averaged over 100 points per game in the second half of the NBA season.

The Celtics’ defense is the key to their success, and they know it.

“We all have assignments, and they’re multiple assignments, and if you miss it…that’s your ass,” said Garnett, “We’re a defensive team.”

Garnett, who was awarded the NBA’s defensive player of the year award before the game, has set the tone defensively all season long.

He might not win the award, but he is the NBA’s most valuable player and he proves it every time the Celtics take the floor.

Where do the Hawks go from here?  They seem to believe that their only hope is to turn this series into a street fight. 

Then again, they lost Wednesday night's street fight by nineteen points.

Back to the drawing board, I guess…

Quick Hits

The crowd booed Bibby relentlessly every time he touched the ball tonight.  After the game, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen were asked if they had ever had the same thing happen to either of them.

“Neither one of us has ever said anything retarded,” replied Garnett, “Have I ever said anything retarded?  I can’t recall.”

If you missed those "retarded" comments, this is what Mike Bibby said:

"They were kind of loud at the beginning," he said. "But a lot of these fans are bandwagon jumpers trying to get on this now. I played here last year, too. And I didn't see three fourths of them. They're for the team now and they might get a little rowdy but that's about it."

For the record, Bibby played in Boston once last season and the Celtics drew over 16,000 fans.  In a season where the Celtics only won 24 games.

Not sure you can complain about bandwagon jumpers given that.

James Posey was first off the Celtics’ bench tonight, due to Pierce’s injury.  He finished the game with nine points, five rebounds, and a ridiculous flagrant foul.

For the record, the foul where Pierce was clobbered and forced to leave the game was not called flagrant.

I’m SeanMC.

SeanMC is a Senior Writer at Bleacher Report. His archive can be found here. You can find everything he writes, including articles for other publications, here.


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