Tag Archives: Los Angeles Lakers

Take Two: Chris Paul to LA?

by Danny Jaillet

According to a report written by ESPN, Chris Paul has a chance to go to the Lakers after all. According to the report, the blockbuster trade has been resubmitted to the league office for approval. The first time around, the Lakers reportedly were supposed to get Paul with the Rockets getting Paul Gasol, and the Hornets receiving Kevin Martin, Lamar Odom and Luis Scola. In my opinion, this is the wrong move to make from the Lakers standpoint. If they have to give up any of their “big men” then I don’t think it’s worth it. Gasol has been the most solid “big man” and Odom was their best one coming off the bench. The Hornets however, I think would have benefited most from the trade. They would have gotten a premier scorer in Scola and with Odom coming off the bench, they would have some scoring power. Martin too, has been known to score points in bunches. That’s not to say the Rockets would’ve lost. They would have gotten a great scorer in the post and a dominant force in the paint. Gasol was a big key for the Lakers especially during their 2010 title run. Andrew Bynum being constantly injured magnified Gasol’s importance even more. The combination of his height, his ability to shoot, makes him a tough player to guard.

It will be interesting to see all sides resubmit. I think the Lakers will give up too much for Paul and they will be the losers in this blockbuster trade. If I was Lakers general manager Jerry Buss, I would keep my big men and see about trading some other players. If the Lakers do in fact get Chris Paul that could spell trouble for the Boston Celtics. Getting Paul would add a completely new dimension to the Lakers team and with him and Kobe Bryant in the lineup you’d be bound to score some points. It should be interesting to see what all three sides come up with. In my opinion, this one trade could shift the balance of power in the Western Conference.

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nba power rankings

By Zikre Haimanot

Well a lot has changed in the NBA since our last rankings, the Hornets have reverted to the mediocre team we all expected, the defending champs went on a 4 game losing streak and the mighty Celtics have continued to dominate (yes I’m still a homer). I know its early in the season but I’m also taking back something I said in the previous rankings, hint the Celtics aren’t behind the Lakers anymore.

1.) Boston Celtics- How can I deny a team that’s on an impressive 6 game winning streak and are playing some great basketball even though they’ve been plagued with injuries. Kevin Garnett is playing some amazing ball and some of the rebounding numbers hes getting are flat out ridiculous comparing to how he struggled last year

2.) Dallas Mavericks- With a 16-4 record the Mavericks are surprising many people with their play and seem to be a serious contender in the West. They have been ending teams streaks and have six straight wins at home. A quick glance at their schedule and you can see they have the potential to go on a monster streak with the lousy teams they play.

3.) San Antonio Spurs- They seem to be borrowing the Utah Jazz’s blueprint for success, go down by at least 15 points and comeback to win the game in the fourth quarter. Four wins this week have come when they were trailing and they have now matched the team’s best start through 20 games. I said this last week and I’ll say it again GO AWAY.

4.) Orlando Magic- The NBA season had started about a month ago but flu season is just hitting Orlando. They’ve been hit by a serious virus and multiple players have been missing games while recovering, what they can be proud of? Their still 15-5.

5.) Utah Jazz- Great point guard, great coach and a deep team are things a lot of people overlooked when deciding the fate of the Jazz and Deron Williams seems to be on a mission to prove every one wrong. An early MVP candidate he seems poised to have a break through season.

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NBA Finals: Los Angeles 83, Boston 79: Lakers set shooting woes aside and win 16th NBA championship

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (center) celebrates with his teammates after wining the 2010 NBA Championship title with an 83-79 win in Game 7 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center on Thursday night. (Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (center) celebrates with his teammates after winning the 2010 NBA Championship title with an 83-79 win in Game 7 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center on Thursday night. (Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

By Gethin Coolbaugh

LOS ANGELES – We knew that a champion would be crowned following 48 minutes of basketball last night.

But what we didn’t know is who wanted it more.

The answer, was the Lakers.

Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 23 points and Ron Artest added 20 points as Los Angeles defeated Boston 83-79 to clinch its 16th NBA championship title in Game 7 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center on Thursday night.

“It wasn’t well done, but it was done,” said Lakers coach Phil Jackson. “And we did it with perseverance.”

Bryant, who made 11-of-15 shots and also had 15 rebounds, was awarded the Bill Russell Finals Most Valuable Player award. The most chilling moment of all came when Russell himself gave Bryant the trophy, then shook his hand.

Boston led 23-14 after the first quarter but Los Angeles outscored the Celtics 20-17 in the second quarter to cut the halftime deficit to 57-51.

The Lakers controlled the second half, outscoring the Celtics 19-17 in the third quarter and 30-22 in the final period to seal the championship.

Pau Gasol scored 19 points and amassed 18 rebounds, nine of which came on the offensive end.Derek Fisher totaled 10 points and Andrew Bynum totaled two points and had six rebounds in 18 and a half minutes.

Lamar Odom led the Lakers bench in scoring with seven points and Sasha Vujacic scored two points.

However, Vujacic’s points came at a big moment of the game on two crucial free throws late in the game to give Los Angeles a five-point cushion.

All five starters scored in double-digits for the Celtics. Paul Pierce led the Celtics in scoring with 18 points on 5-of-15 shooting and also had 10 rebounds. Kevin Garnett had 17 points and three rebounds and Rajon Rondo amassed 14 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds.

Ray Allen added 13 points and Rasheed Wallace, who started in place of the injured Kendrick Perkins, had 11 points and eight rebounds.

Glen Davis was the only Celtic to score off the bench, scoring six points and grabbing nine rebounds.

The story of the night was poor shooting on both sides. The Celtics made only 29-of-71 shots to shoot 40.8% while the Lakers connected on 27-of-83 shots to shoot 32.5%. Boston hit 6-of-16 three pointers (37.5%) while the Lakers made 4-of-20 shots from beyond the arch (20%).

Bryant made only 6-of-24 field goals, Artest made 7-of-18 and Gasol hit 6-of-16 shots.

The Lakers held a 53-40 advantage in rebounds, but the Celtics held an advantage in assists, 18-11, turnovers, 14-11, and blocks, 7-3. Los Angeles had a 7-6 advantage in steals.

Fouls once again plagued the Celtics as they had 25 compared to the Lakers’ 19. Wallace fouled out with six fouls, Garnett had five fouls and both Pierce and Allen had four fouls.

Pierce had three fouls, Rondo had two and Tony Allen (0 points) had one.

As for Los Angeles, Bryant was the only player to have four fouls.

If it’s any consolation for Celtics fans, Ray Allen couldn’t imagine seeing this group breaking up anytime soon.

“I couldn’t image playing in any other combination,” Allen said.

The Celtics finished their season with an overall record of 66-41 after posting a regular season record of 50-32 and a postseason mark of 16-9.

No doubt that the loss hurts for Celtics players and fans alike, but they really should be proud of what this team accomplished.

They put up a fight for the ages, and if anything, the fuel is on the fire for a possible championship run next season.

Gethin Coolbaugh is the Associate Editor of Boston Sports U18. He can be reached at 774-279-1995 or at gethin.coolbaugh@bostonsportsu18.com. You can also visit Gethin Coolbaugh’s official website and follow Gethin Coolbaugh on Twitter.

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Celtics Journal: One season defined by one game

Celtics captain Paul Pierce (left) and Lakers guard Kobe Bryant will each look to lead their respective teams to an NBA championship title in Thursday night's decisive Game 7 at Staples Center. (Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

Celtics captain Paul Pierce (left) and Lakers guard Kobe Bryant will each look to lead their respective teams to an NBA championship title in Thursday night's decisive Game 7 at Staples Center. (Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

By Gethin Coolbaugh

It’s the wonder of sports that allows one game to define an entire season.

That’s the position that the Celtics find themselves in entering tonight’s Game 7 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center (9 p.m. EST, TV/Radio: ABC, TSN/WEEI).

A whole body of work, regular season and postseason alike, will mean absolutely nothing if the Celtics cannot emerge as the victors tonight.

Or it could mean everything.

The Celtics’ 50-32 regular season record? Meaningless. Boston’s 15-8 record in the playoffs? Zero importance.

It all comes down to the 48 minutes of basketball played tonight in Los Angeles. The winner of this one game will be remembered by all for an eternity.

The NBA truly is where amazing happens.

And you know that the Celtics’ Big Three will do absolutely everything in their power to make sure that they’ll be the ones hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy at around 11:30 this evening.

Unfortunately, so will Kobe Bryant.

For the Celtics to win the all-important Game 7, they’ll have to buckle down and focus on several factors, the first of which being the absence of Kendrick Perkins after his season-ending right knee injury.

Perkins hasn’t been an offensive threat in this series, averaging 5.8 points in six games against the Lakers. Yet it’s Perkins defense that will be sorely missed in the Celtics’ last game of the season.

Averaging 5.8 rebounds, Perkins was unquestionably Boston’s anchor in the paint, providing strong defense. Aside from Lakers center Andrew Bynum, Perkins was the strongest player on the floor, and his presence was key in stopping the likes of Bynum and the rejuvenated Pau Gasol.

Stepping up in his place is sixth-man Rasheed Wallace. Two months ago, Celtics fans would have groaned and buried their heads in the sand upon this announcement, but Wallace has reinvented his image in the 2010 playoffs as a player that actually shows up in big games.

In 23 postseason games, Wallace is averaging 5.9 points, 2.7 rebounds and 41.2% shooting. The numbers alone aren’t all that impressive, but it’s the way that Wallace obtained them.

Wallace has been a very serviceable reserve in the playoffs, stepping up in the critical minutes while the Celtics rested their starters. Wallace has scored in double-digits five times and has scored over six points nine times.

In the Finals, Wallace has seen a dip in production, averaging 4.3 points and four rebounds in six games. But on the offensive end, scoring production from Wallace is a plus, as Perkins was not a major contributor.

Losing Perkins is a major setback for Boston, but Wallace has proven that he is capable of stepping up in the big moments. He will have to do so tonight or else the Lakers may be celebrating a championship on their home court.

Another important key for the Celtics success tonight will be the shooting performance of young guard Rajon Rondo.

Rondo does not possess a strong jump shot and is much better at driving to the hoop, but his mid-range success on the parquet tonight is a must.

By hitting a few deep jumpers, Rondo will force his defenders to play him tight instead of waiting for him to attack the paint. In turn, that will allow both Kevin Garnett and Wallace to open up in the post and will allow Paul Pierce and Ray Allen to position themselves on the perimeter.

Who would have thought that Rondo’s jumper would play a crucial role at this stage?

Finally, the Celtics will need to get a big game out of at least two of the Big Three, most likely Pierce and Garnett.

Pierce is the offensive motor of this team. When he’s firing on all cylinders, the Celtics are able to build up a big lead.

As for Garnett, having him play a major factor in the post is key to open up the floor for Pierce and Allen. If KG is having his way in the paint, the Lakers will be forced to double team him, leaving an open shooter.

Ray Allen has proven to be a prolific scorer throughout his Hall of Fame career, but any points from him tonight will be an added bonus.

Allen has struggled ever since his Finals record eight three pointers in Game 2. It would be nice for Allen to hit his stride and nail several jumpers, but his resume alone will force defenders to play him tight.

With Allen, any shot can be the start of a momentum-shifting run.

If Boston is able to successfully integrate all of these strategies into its game plan, the game’s outcome will most likely be in its favor.

If not, Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher will have the Lakers tied with the Celtics for the most championships in league history at 17 (Yes, I am counting Los Angeles’ NBL title in 1948). That alone is a horrific thought.

Fortunately, the Celtics aren’t going to let that happen.

Gethin Coolbaugh is the Associate Editor of Boston Sports U18. He can be reached at 774-279-1995 or at gethin.coolbaugh@bostonsportsu18.com. You can also visit Gethin Coolbaugh’s official website and follow Gethin Coolbaugh on Twitter.

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NBA Finals: Los Angeles 89, Boston 67: Hollow start; Celtics struggle early as Lakers win, force Game 7

Celtics captain Paul Pierce shoots again the Lakers' Lamar Odom in Los Angeles' 89-67 win in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center on Tuesday night. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Celtics captain Paul Pierce shoots again the Lakers' Lamar Odom in Los Angeles' 89-67 win in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center on Tuesday night. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

By Gethin Coolbaugh

LOS ANGELES – As the old saying goes, it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.

But it wouldn’t have hurt the Celtics to actually show up at the start.

Boston scored a dismal 31 points in the first half on 14-of-41 shooting as Los Angeles rolled to an 89-67 victory in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at Staples Center on Tuesday night.

The Lakers’ win tied the series at 3-3 and forced a Game 7 against the Celtics at Staples Center on Thursday night at 8 p.m. EST (TV/Radio: ABC, TSN/WEEI).

Kobe Bryant led the game in scoring with 26 points on 9-of-19 shooting and also had 11 rebounds. Ron Artest, who struggled to score while the series was in Boston, was red hot right off the bat and finished with 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting from the floor and 3-of-6 shooting from three-point range.

Boston was outscored 28-18 in the first quarter and 23-13 in the second as the Lakers took a 51-31 lead into the break. The Celtics’ 31 points was their second-lowest total in a single half of a playoff game, as they scored 29 against the Detroit Pistons back in 2002.

The Celtics suffered a major setback late in the first quarter when center Kendrick Perkins injured his right knee on an awkward landing. Perkins had an X-ray in the locker room and would not return, and a league source indicated that his status is uncertain for Thursday’s Game 7.

The second half featured more of the same for the Celtics as the Lakers edged them in scoring again, 25-20. Boston managed to outscore Los Angeles 16-13 in the fourth quarter, but it was too little, way too late.

The secondary story of the game was the Celtics’ lackluster performance on the boards. Boston was out-rebounded 30-13 in the first half and 52-39 in the game.

“Our defense was good but our rebounding was better,” said Lakers coach Phil Jackson.

Pau Gasol scored 17 points and had 13 rebounds and nine assists. Derek Fisher scored four points and Andrew Bynum had two points and four rebounds.

Sasha Vujacic led the bench in scoring with nine points and Lamar Odom was right behind him with eight points. Both Shannon Brown and Jordan Farmar scored four points.

Ray Allen led the Celtics with 19 points and Paul Pierce had 13 points and four rebounds. Kevin Garnett totaled 12 points and six rebounds and Rajon Rondo had 10 points, six assists and five rebounds.

The bench struggled as Rasheed Wallace (0 points, 4 fouls), Glen Davis (0 points, 3 fouls) and Tony Allen (2 points, 3 fouls) were limited by foul trouble.

The bench committed 13 fouls and contributed a lowly 13 points. In total, the Celtics had 21 fouls while the Lakers had 17.

For the game, Boston made 28-of-84 shots to shoot 33.3% from the field and made 5-of-23 three pointers (21.7%) and hit 6-of-10 free throws (60%).

Los Angeles hit 33-of-79 shots to shoot 41.8% while connecting on 6-of-19 three pointers (31.6%) and making 17-of-19 free throws (89.5%).

The Celtics had 17 assists, 14 turnovers, eight steals and four blocks while the Lakers totaled 17 assists, 13 turnovers, 12 steals and eight blocks.

While the series has gone back and forth in the first six games, we know one thing: a champion will be crowned on Thursday night.

And after wasting a golden opportunity in Game 6, the Celtics have their work cut out for them.

Gethin Coolbaugh is the Associate Editor of Boston Sports U18. He can be reached at 774-279-1995 or at gethin.coolbaugh@bostonsportsu18.com. You can also visit Gethin Coolbaugh’s official website and follow Gethin Coolbaugh on Twitter.

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The Celtics Give a Vintage Performance in Game 5

By: Alex Reimer

In what was possibly the last home game of the “big 3” era, the Celtics put forth a vintage performance. In the 92-86 win over the Lakers in a pivotal game 5, four Celtics (Rondo, Ray Allen, Pierce, and Garnett) were in double figures. The starting lineup needed to come up big, and they sure did.

It got close at the end, but the Celtics pulled away. Phil Jackson exclaimed on the Los Angeles sideline that the Celtics “know how to lose games in the 4th quarter.” That may have been true from October-March. But doesn’t Phil know that the “switch has been flipped?” From the start of the postseason onward, this Celtics’ team has been as resilient a bunch as any. They simply know how to win.

Here the Celtics are, 1 win away from the franchise’s 18th championship banner and 2nd title in 3 years. This most recent resurgence of Celtics basketball has had everything to do with team and a little something called “ubuntu.” It was on full display in game 5.

From the spectacular help defense, which shut down everybody not named Kobe Bryant, to the offensive end, the Celtics once again won with a full team effort.

It was time for Paul Pierce to perform like a captain, and he did with 27 points. Kevin Garnett chipped in with 18 points and 10 rebounds. Rajon Rondo had 18 points and 8 assists, and Ray Allen contributed with 12 points. There wasn’t a historic shooting performance on this night, nor 30 combined points from Glen Davis and Nate Robinson. This win was anything but “fool’s gold.”

Kobe scored 19 points in the 3rd quarter, and finished with 38. However, the Celtics still outscored the Lakers 28-26 in the 3rd.

That was because the Lakers reverted back to the team we saw in 2008. Pau Gasol shrunk at the feet of Garnett, and the bench did not contribute. Ron Artest continues to struggle mightily offensively (2-9 from the field), and Andrew Bynum played 31 minutes without grabbing a defensive rebound.

It takes a village to win. Whether it’s the bench stealing game 4, or Paul Pierce and the starting lineup leading the way, the Celtics can win in various ways. They are far from a on- man show, and haven’t been the past 3 years.

This might have been it for this crew. It could be the last home game for Ray Allen, who is a free agent at the end of the season. It will be the last home game for assistant coach Tom Thibodeau, who will coach the Bulls next year. Doc Rivers may not be back.

But this isn’t the time for that. The Celtics know it too. They have a flight at 9:45 AM tomorrow, heading straight for LA.

The focus shifts to Tuesday’s game 6, where the Celtics head into the Staples Center with the 3-2 series advantage. The Lakers’ backs are against the wall, and it is unsure how they will respond. Especially because we know that the Celtics will not give them any breathing room.

Come playoff time, complacency is not in this team’s vocabulary.

Alex Reimer is the host of the Red Sox podcast, “Without a Curse.” “Without a Curse” is available on both www.thesportsstuff.com and in the iTunes store. Alex is also the host of “The Alex Reimer Show,” which airs every Saturday from 4-6 PM EST on 1120 AM WBNW Boston and www.moneymattersradio.net. Alex can be reached at, Alexredsox076@aol.com.

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NBA Finals: Boston 92, Los Angeles 86: Pierce-ing victory; Celtics win critical Game 5, take 3-2 lead

Celtics forward Paul Pierce (right) takes a shot over Lakers guard Kobe Bryant in Boston's 92-86 win in Game 5 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden on Sunday night. Win the win, Boston holds a 3-2 series lead. (Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images)

Celtics forward Paul Pierce (right) takes a shot over Lakers guard Kobe Bryant in Boston's 92-86 win in Game 5 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden on Sunday night. Win the win, Boston holds a 3-2 series lead. (Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images)

By Gethin Coolbaugh

BOSTON – After several sub par performances in the NBA Finals, Celtics captain Paul Pierce knew that he needed to come up big in a critical Game 5.

Pierce did just that, scoring a team-high 27 points on 12-of-21 shooting as Boston cruised to a 92-86 win over Los Angeles in Game 5 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden on Sunday night.

It was the Celtics final home game of the season, and they made the most of it by winning arguable the biggest game of the series and giving themselves a critical 3-2 series lead heading back to Los Angeles.

Boston took a slim 22-20 lead into the second quarter and outscored Los Angeles 23-19 in the second quarter to take a 45-39 halftime lead.

The second half featured more of the same, as the Celtics edged the Lakers in scoring in the third quarter, 28-26, and L.A. outscored Boston 21-19 in the final quarter.

The Celtics had four players score in double digits. Both Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo had solid offensive outputs, scoring 18 points apiece. Garnett also had 10 rebounds, five steals and three assists and Rondo had eight assists and five rebounds.

Ray Allen had 12 points and three rebounds and center Kendrick Perkins had four points and seven rebounds.

Rasheed Wallace led the Celtics’ bench in scoring with five points and both Glen Davis and Nate Robinson added four points.

The Lakers boasted the game’s top scorer as superstar guard Kobe Bryant amassed 38 points, five rebounds and four assists.

After a pedestrian first half, Bryant came on strong in the third quarter, making nearly every shot he took.

Pau Gasol was the only other Laker to score in double-digits, totaling 12 points and 12 rebounds in 38 minutes.

Derek Fisher added nine points and four rebounds and Ron Artest totaled seven points. Andrew Bynum, who missed a significant portion of Game 4 due to a knee injury, played 31 minutes and had six points and one rebound.

Lamar Odom led the Lakers’ bench in scoring with eight points. Sasha Vujacic added five points and Jordan Farmar scored one point.

Boston made 40-of-71 shots to shoot 56.3% and connected on 3-of-112 three pointers (25%) and 9-of-13 free throws (69.2%).

Los Angeles hit 31-of-78 shots to shoot 39.7% and made 7-of-19 three pointers (36.8%) and 17-of-26 free throws (65.4%).

The key statistic in each game has been rebounding, as every team that led the game in rebounding went on to win. That held true on Sunday night as the Celtics amassed 35 rebounds compared to the Lakers 34.

Boston had 21 assists, 16 turnovers, eight steals and seven blocks while the Lakers had 12 assists, 13 turnovers, nine steals and only one block. The Celtics had 23 fouls in the game while the Lakers committed 22.

The series shifts back to the Staples Center in L.A. for the final two games of the series. Los Angeles hosts Boston in Game 6 of the NBA Finals at 9 p.m. EST on Tuesday night. (TV/Radio: ABC, TSN/WEEI).

Gethin Coolbaugh is the Associate Editor of Boston Sports U18. He can be reached at 774-279-1995 or at gethin.coolbaugh@bostonsportsu18.com. You can also visit Gethin Coolbaugh’s official website and follow Gethin Coolbaugh on Twitter.

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Coolbaugh: Glorious redemption for Glen Davis

Celtics forward Glen Davis asserted his status as one of the league's best reserves after his 18-point performance in Boston's 96-89 win over the Lakers in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Celtics forward Glen Davis asserted his status as one of the league's best reserves after his 18-point performance in Boston's 96-89 win over the Lakers in Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Thursday night. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

By Gethin Coolbaugh

Call him Big Baby, Ticket Stub, Uno Uno, or whatever else you like.

But after last night’s dazzling performance, there’s one thing you can’t call Celtics forward Glen Davis.

A quitter.

Davis scored 18 points and had five rebounds and two steals in 22 and a half minutes to help lead the Celtics to a 96-89 Game 4 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers.

It has certainly been a roller-coaster season for Davis to say the least. His season began marred by controversy. Controversy, that he created.

While riding in the car of Shawn Bridgewater, a childhood friend, Davis got into an altercation and threw a punch that resulted in a broken right thumb, and ultimately urgery.

The fight resulted in a suspension from Celtics management, but more importantly, caused Davis to miss Boston’s first 27 games.

“I am extremely disappointed that this incident occurred and that it will prevent me from starting the season with the rest of my teammates,” said Davis. “My teammates and the entire Celtics organization are extremely important to me and I will do my best to expedite the healing process and be back on the court as soon as possible.”

At the time, it looked like Davis was headed down a destructive path. But unlike so many of his peers, Davis smartened up and started acting like he belonged on the roster of the 17-time world champions.

Davis finished the season averaging 6.3 points and 3.8 rebounds in 54 games.

He had his moments throughout the season, scoring in double-digits 13 times and grabbing six or more rebounds 12 times.

But it wasn’t Davis’ regular season performance that redeemed him, but his performance this postseason.

We all remember Davis’ game-winning shot in Chicago in Game 4 of last season’s first round playoff series. Davis started in place of Kevin Garnett in the 2008-09 playoffs and emerged as one of the league’s best reserves.

In 14 postseason games, all of which he started, Davis scored 221 points, had 79 rebounds, 25 assists and 18 steals.

In that timespan, Davis scored less than 10 points only twice and had more than six rebounds seven times.

He scored over 20 points five times and over 12 points six times. In short, Davis was dominant.

Unfortunately, when Kevin Garnett isn’t in the lineup, you’re chances of winning another title are slim to none.

But this postseason had been different, namely because Garnet is healthy and performing on a nightly basis (for the most part, at least).

Glen Davis contests Lakers forward Lamar Odom's shot in Boston's Game 4 win over Los Angeles. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Glen Davis contests Lakers forward Lamar Odom's shot in Boston's Game 4 win over Los Angeles. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Davis’ first big-time game of the 2010 playoffs came in Game 2 of the Celtics opening round series against the Heat. Ironically, it was the game that Davis started following Garnett’s one-game suspension after an altercation with Miami’s Quentin Richardson.

In nearly 30 minutes, Davis scored 23 points and had eight rebounds. He made 7-of-14 field goals and an even more impressive 9-of-11 free throws.

After Game 2 of the Eastern Conference First Round, Davis next came up big against the Cavaliers in Game 5. He scored 15 points, had four rebounds and made 7-of-10 free throws in the Celtics’ 120-88 win.

Then came his 17-point, six-rebound outing in Boston’s 94-71 win in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals against Orlando.

While most of Davis’ big nights have come when Garnett was either out of the game, having an off night or in foul trouble, he still deserves a lot of praise.

Hey, someone has to come up big in tough situations, and let’s not forget that, Garnett or not, Davis is still facing the creme de la creme.

Davis’ next solid outing came in the Celtics’ 91-84 loss to the Lakers in Game 3 of the NBA Finals, in which he had 12 points and three rebounds.

Of course, that all led up to Davis’ ultimate redemption act in Game 4.

His effort went much further than the box score indicated. By playing exceptionally well at the highest stage, Davis proved that he is one of he NBA’s best role players and that he certainly deserves the championship ring on his finger.

And if he plays like he did last night in any of Boston’s next three games, he may be able to add another ring to his repertoire.

Gethin Coolbaugh is the Associate Editor of Boston Sports U18. He can be reached at 774-279-1995 or at gethin.coolbaugh@bostonsportsu18.com. You can also visit Gethin Coolbaugh’s official website and follow Gethin Coolbaugh on Twitter.

*Quotes from this story were used from the news services of ESPN Boston, which can be read by clicking this link.

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NBA Finals: Boston 96, Los Angeles 89: Bench press; Davis, Robinson pace the Celtics to Game 4 victory

Celtics forward Glen Davis celebrates during the fourth quarter of Boston's 96-89 Game 4 win over the Los Angeles Lakers at TD Garden on Thursday night. The series is tied 2-2. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Celtics forward Glen Davis celebrates during the fourth quarter of Boston's 96-89 Game 4 win over the Los Angeles Lakers at TD Garden on Thursday night. The series is tied 2-2. (Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

By Matt Serocki

After yet another physical, emotionally heated 2010 NBA Finals game, we have a series, folks.

Thanks to a stellar bench performance led by a drooling Glen Davis and an igniting Nate Robinson, the Celtics edged the Lakers 96-89 in Game 4 of the NBA Finals at TD Garden on Thursday night to tie the NBA Finals at 2-2.

Davis (18 points, five rebounds) and Robinson (12 points) led a fourth-quarter surge that displayed Celtics head coach Doc Rivers’ trust in the bench, which contributed 36 points.  Davis was 7-of-10 from the field while Robinson was 4-for-8.

Although starters Paul Pierce (19 points), Kevin Garnett (13 points) and Ray Allen (12 points) had a balanced output, the win was truly earned from the top of the playoff rotation to the bottom.

Things looked rough heading into the half as Garnett hit a buzzer-beater as time expired in the first half just to put the Celtics within three of the Lakers at 45-42.

A low-scoring third quarter in which Boston outscored L.A. 18-17 might have led to a low final score, but an early 8-0 run in the fourth quarter dispelled any chance of having the final score reflect a defensive struggle.

Boston villain Kobe Bryant still managed to lead all scorers with 33 points, hitting 6-of-11 shots from beyond the three-point arc.

Bryant continues to show why he, and not LeBron James, is the league’s best player right now.  Although he hasn’t had series-defining fourth quarters in the Finals, Bryant still remains a major threat every time he touches the ball (and he makes me cringe every time he takes a shot).

The prevailing thought entering Game 4 was that the Celtics would not be able to deal with the interior size of the Lakers and mainly Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom.

Gasol (21 points, six rebounds) and Odom (10 points, seven rebound) had strong games, but Bynum missed most of the second half due to his lingering knee injury.

Whatever the case may be, the Celtics proved that they are not going down without a fight. The Celtics intensity bled through in the late stages when both Rasheed Wallace and Nate Robinson picked up technical fouls.

For Wallace, the technical marked his sixth of the playoffs, meaning that, like Perkins, one more will result in an automatic one-game suspension.

Boston had the edge on the boards, hauling in 41 to L.A.’s 34.  On the offensive glass, Boston had the edge, 16 to 8.

The focus now shifts to Game 5 in Boston at 8 p.m. EST on Sunday evening at TD Garden (TV/Radio: ABC, TSN/WEEI).

Any chance of a second title for this group of Celtics would have to start with a win.  With the series tied 2-2, the Finals itself now become a best-of-three series between the NBA’s two most storied franchises.

The fact that neither team has won consecutive games in the series and the two remaining showdowns (Game 7 if necessary) will take place in Los Angeles, Game 5 becomes all the more important for both teams.

Who will get another ring?  Will it be Kobe, Derek Fisher and Lakers’ head coach Phil Jackson’s fifth ring together or will it be the second ring for Rivers and the Big Three?  However things unfold, let’s hope everything is left on the floor by both teams and not determined by shoddy refereeing.

Matt Serocki is an NBA and NFL Columnist for Boston Sports U18. He is also a Sports Correspondent for The MetroWest Daily News. He can be reached at mattser82@yahoo.com.

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Celtics Journal: Old habits return for Celtics

Lakers guard Derek Fisher blows past Kevin Garnett (left) and Glen Davis in Los Angeles' 91-84 win in Game 3 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday night. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Lakers guard Derek Fisher blows past Kevin Garnett (left) and Glen Davis in Los Angeles' 91-84 win in Game 3 of the NBA Finals on Tuesday night. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

By Gethin Coolbaugh

After three rounds of exceeding expectations and tremendous play, it looks like the past is finally catching up to the Celtics.

Boston shocked the basketball world when it rattled off three straight wins to eliminate the Cleveland Cavaliers in five games in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

And of course, there was the Celtics surprising performance in the Eastern Conference Finals.

The Celtics jumped out to a 3-0 series lead over the Magic before dropping two straight games. Boston would ultimately take care of the Magic in Game 6 at TD Garden, setting the state for a Celtics-Lakers rematch in the NBA Finals.

Again.

But something new is happening to the Celtics now that they’ve reached the NBA’s highest stage.

Well, actually, something old.

After shocking the league with their excellent play in the playoffs, the Celtics have finally been hit with the same reality that they were hit with in the regular season.

Like it or not, this roster is full of aging talent that is starting to show its age at the worst time possible.

The Celtics stumbled through the second half of the season, making limited efforts to beat the likes of the Nets and the Bucks.

And after they came clean and said that they were essentially dogging it through the regular season, Celtics fans took acceptance without even thinking twice.

At the time, it seemed too good to be true, but it was unfolding right in front of us.

But now, it seems that it was too good to be true.

Even though the Celtics saved their best for the playoffs, two hard fought series against two of the NBA’s elite teams are finally starting to take their toll on the 15 men in green and white.

Lest we forget, the Celtics are facing their toughest opponent yet in the Los Angeles Lakers.

The rejuvenated Celtics that peered out from their season-long slumber are starting to retreat again.

If you’re looking for specific examples, the final minute of Game 3 is the perfect example of Boston’s return to its old ways.

Remember that play where Derek Fisher blew past three Boston defenders with around 50 seconds remaining? Boston appeared as if it had flat-out given up when they were within single digits in a critical moment of a chapionship game.

That was the play that defined the Celtics in the game, and potentially the series if they can’t salvage their efforts in Game 4.

Plays like that bring back memories of Boston’s roller-coaster regular season in which it didn’t fight hard night in and night out.

That mentality may work for the regular season, and maybe even in the first two rounds of the playoffs, but it is absolutely unacceptable in a situation where there are limited chances to win an NBA title.

It’s truly shocking that we’ve been brought to question the heart and intensity of the Boston Celtics.

The same team that introduced the Boston market to Ubuntu and a roster of selfless superstars is now deciding to take plays off in critical moments.

That’s what makes tonight’s Game 4 at TD Garden (9 p.m., TV/Radio: ABC, TSN/WEEI) an essential must-win game for the Celtics.

If Boston wants to continue to be considered as a contender in this series, it all starts tonight.

Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen will all need a find a way to break free from the Lakers strong defense and have a standout game. At least, two of the three needs to do so on the offensive end.

Optimally, the Celtics need to find a way for all three to be working harmoniously.

If Pierce focuses on getting to the basket and drawing fouls, like he did so well in the first half of his career, and if Ray Allen finds his stroke from the perimeter, Boston will have a sound offensive attack.

As for Garnett, his job is to draw defenders in the post to open up Pierce and Allen. But to do so, he’ll have to prove early on that he is going to be a serious threat in the paint.

Rajon Rondo’s job remains the same: get the ball to the Big Three, or more importantly, the open man. His ability to slash to the basket is an added bonus, but he should not be the main offensive threat.

If Rondo is forced to be the first option in Game 4 of the NBA Finals, the Celtics are in trouble. For once, Boston just needs Rondo to play his position, which involves nothing more than fundamental passing and solid defense.

Should the Celtics fail to put any of these strategies into action, they will most likely be looking at a 3-1 series hole entering Game 5.

If the series reaches that point, it’s a safe bet that the Celtics won’t be bringing home banner number 18.

Gethin Coolbaugh is the Associate Editor of Boston Sports U18. He can be reached at 774-279-1995 or at gethin.coolbaugh@bostonsportsu18.com. You can also visit Gethin Coolbaugh’s official website and follow Gethin Coolbaugh on Twitter.

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