Round 2, Game 2: Celtics vs. Heat
May, 3, 2011
By Greg Payne | ESPNBoston.com
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PAYNE'S THREE THINGS TO WATCH
- Rondo's Revenge: Rajon Rondo was expected to dominate this series for the Celtics from the outset of Game 1, but he failed to establish any semblance of a rhythm or pace in the first half of Sunday's 99-90 loss before foul trouble glued him to the bench for the majority of the second quarter. While he responded well enough in the second half to still flirt with a triple-double (eight points, seven rebounds, seven assists), he has to reignite his role as the engine to the Celtics' offense early in tonight's game and emerge as the clear winner of the point guard matchup. In addition, he has to limit his turnovers, particularly in the fourth quarter. On Sunday, he handed the ball over five times in the final period when the Celtics were attempting to claw back from what was at one point a 19-point deficit.
- Truth of the Matter: Tensions were supposed to run high throughout this series, and Game 1 didn't disappoint, as Paul Pierce picked up two technical fouls in less than a minute and was ejected with seven minutes to play. With Pierce back in the fold tonight, will the Heat try to bait him into losing his cool again? It'll be on Pierce to not only respond with a strong performance on the floor, but to also maintain his composure should things get chippy again like they did on Sunday.
- Paging Kevin Garnett: Kevin Garnett did his job defensively in Sunday's Game 1 loss: Making Chris Bosh feel like a non-factor on offense by limiting him to seven points on 3-of-10 shooting. But it felt like Garnett was just as uninvolved in Boston's offensive schemes, as he registered just six points on 3-of-9 shooting. The Garnett-Bosh matchup is one the Celtics will most likely have to win if they hope to advance past the Heat, and the C's need KG to be more aggressive with his shot selection, particularly in the post.
MIAMI (AP) -- Paul Pierce is from Los Angeles, so he knows a thing or do about Hollywood.
And he knows he'll have to act better if the Boston Celtics are going to avoid getting into a quick two-game hole in their Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Miami Heat.
A day after getting ejected from Boston's Game 1 loss, Pierce acknowledged that his actions were "selfish" and that he needed to do a better job keeping his composure. Nonetheless, he still believes that he was more victim than aggressor during the two plays in which he got technical fouls that sent him to the locker room with 7 minutes left in Miami's 99-90 win.
Game 2 is Tuesday, and Pierce isn't sure if the physicality both teams offered Sunday would carry over.
"This is not a movie or a script," Pierce said. "It's hard to really say what's going to happen game in, game out."
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