NBA Playoffs: Boston Celtics Silence Quentin Richardson and Miami Heat

Stew Winkel@stew_winkelSenior Analyst IApril 21, 2010

So, Quentin, do you have any comments you would like to share now?

My guess is no, after the Boston Celtics destroyed the Miami Heat in Game Two, 106-77.  As lopsided as the final score was, it was not even that close.

Boston had runs in the game of 21-0 in the first half and 18-0 in the second half.  When Rajon Rondo drained a fade-away three-pointer with ten minutes left in the fourth quarter to put Boston ahead by 30, 92-62, it rendered the remainder of the game nothing but garbage time. 

It was at this point that TNT switched to the Phoenix-Portland game. 

As we all know by now, Richardson instigated a situation at the end of Game One that ultimately led to Kevin Garnett being suspended for last night’s game. 

Getting Garnett suspended was not enough for Richardson, as afterwards he had to run his mouth, calling out both Garnett and Paul Pierce, referring to them as “actresses.”  Richardson thought Pierce was faking it and that just did not sit well with a gamer like Richardson.

Richardson said he does not like Pierce and during the game last night Marv Albert repeatedly referred to Richardson and Pierce as having a rivalry.

Hmm...Marv, there is no rivalry.

A rivalry requires equals of some sorts.  Richardson is an insignificant player nearing the end of a disappointing career.  Pierce is an NBA champion and a perennial All-Star who will have his number retired by the Boston Celtics.

Russell-Chamberlain had a rivalry, and the same for Bird-Magic. Pierce-Richardson have nothing.

To be fair, Richardson was a major contributor for the Heat in Game Two.  If by contributor, I mean someone who did not do anything to help his own team. 

Richardson had a team-worst plus-minus of minus-33, scoring just five points (zero in the second half).  Pierce, on the other hand, had a plus-37, which was bettered only by Kendrick Perkins' plus-41. 

But even putting aside Richardson’s brutal performance in game two, what really bothered me about his comments was just how unqualified Richardson was to be calling out a player like Pierce for a lack of toughness.

Richardson, in his 10th season, played in just his 16th playoff game last night.  This season is only the second time he has been on a team that has reached the playoffs. 

Richardson’s best season of 17.2 points in 2003-04 would be the worst season for Pierce, other than his rookie year.

What type of player is Quentin Richardson?  Well, he was traded this past offseason straight-up for Darko Milicic.  That can never be a good sign about a player.  That wasn’t all though as Richardson would be traded three more times during the offseason.

He is also the type of player that just so happened to have his best season in a contract year.  He then conned the Phoenix Suns into a big contract.  After one year, though, the Suns had enough and shipped him to the New York Knicks.

That is where he really shined. In four years in New York, Richardson was paid nearly $32 million, but played in only an average of 55 games per season, scoring just 10.7 points per game. 

Missing games would actually be the only consistent part of Richardson’s entire career.  In his ten seasons, Richardson has played in just 677 of a possible 820 regular season games.  In only five of his ten seasons has Richardson played in more than 70 games.  

Pierce, on the other hand, in 12 seasons, has played in 884 regular season games and another 78 in the postseason.  Pierce has played at least 70 games ten times, at least 79 games seven times, and in all 82 games three times. 

The only seasons where Pierce failed to play in at least 70 games were 2006-07 and the lockout shortened 1998-99 season, where Pierce played in 48 of 50 games. 

And Pierce has stayed on the court, playing an average of 38 minutes per game throughout his career. 

If Richardson had any real sense of the limited player he really is, he never would have instigated the incident in game one in the first place and he would have known not to run his mouth about Pierce and Garnett afterwards. 

But for someone with a delusional sense of self-worth like Richardson, he sees no need to put in any real effort to backup his tough talk.  He’d rather pretend he has some semblance of importance on a basketball court.  Well, in Richardson's case, instead of “pretend,” a better word may be “act.”

Game Two Notes:

  • With 7:03 left in the third quarter of Game One, Boston trailed the Heat 61-47.  From that point through the end of Game Two, Boston outscored Miami 144-92. 
  • Miami scored 29 points in the first quarter of Game One.  Since then, the Heat have totalled only 124 points, 17.7 points per quarter.
  • Through two games of the series, the Celtics have held the Heat to just 76.5 points per game.
  • Star No. 1 of the game for the Celtics had to be Glen Davis, who started for Garnett and finished with a season-high 23 points and eight rebounds.  Davis’ previous season-high was 15 points; he had 14 in the first half alone tonight.
  • Star No. 2 was Ray Allen who knocked down seven three-pointers to finish with 25 points, includig scoring 17 points in the third quarter when the Celtics put the game away.  Usually I am not the biggest fan of listening to Reggie Miller during the TNT Broadcasts, but it was fun hearing him while Allen was putting on a shooting show.  As a great shooter himself, you got a real sense of just how much Miller was enjoying Allen’s three-point shooting clinic. 
  • A bad rebounding team all year, the Celtics dominated the boards last night, out-rebounding the Heat, 50-33.
  • In a 29-point win, was there anything to complain about?  Of course, Rasheed Wallace played. I was shocked at just how many people thought Wallace should start Game Two instead of Davis.  Wallace did not disappoint his critics either—in just 21 minutes of play, Wallace had a minus-12, meaning of the 27 minutes without Wallace on the floor, Boston outscored the Heat by 41 points.
  • Wallace entered the game in the first quarter with Boston leading 15-10.  He exited in the second quarter, with Boston trailing 29-25.  Immediately after Rasheed went to the bench, Boston went on a 21-0 run.  Maybe it was not all Wallace’s fault, but how much evidence does there need to be that this team is better off without Wallace. In Game Three, with Garnett back, let’s hope Doc Rivers remembers how well Davis has played and how ineffective Wallace has been.
  • I also found it interesting to hear Wallace say he does not care if he starts, so long as he is on the court during crunch time.  If I am going to call out Richardson for being delusional, to be fair and balanced, I have to do the same for Rasheed.  What has Sheed done all season that would indicate he deserves to be on the court when the game is on the line?  Other than, of course, scoring on his own hoop.
  • Garnett watched Game Two with Danny Ainge at Ainge’s house.  I have to wonder if Ainge watched the game and at least partially thought about how little his acquisitions to the team this season contributed to the victory.  I already detailed Wallace’s poor play, and Ainge’s other two major additions to the team, Nate Robinson and Marquis Daniels, were nothing more than garbage time players.
  • The Celtics have had the advantage in both games thus far at the free-throw line, shooting 55 free-throws to just 29 for the Heat.  Miami has been called for twice as many fouls as Boston (50-25).  I’d expect those numbers to swing in the Heat’s (and Dwyane Wade’s) favor come Game Three on Friday night in Miami. 


(This article was originally posted on 4SportBoston.com)

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