Tag Archives: Kevin Garnett struggles

Lakers’ physicality the key in Game 1 win over Celtics

Kobe and his teammates attacked the paint and pounded the Celtics on the boards in Game 1. (Pic via Getty Images/Christian Petersen)

There was a time when Pau Gasol wanted nothing better than to let his teammates do the dirty work. There was a time when he appeared to be genuinely afraid of Kevin Garnett.

Those times are only a distant memory now.

Gasol scored 23 points, grabbed 14 rebounds, and even blocked three shots as the Lakers cruised to a 102-89 win over the Celtics in Game 1.

The game was won in the second and third quarters, when the Lakers turned up the intensity and began looking to run against the aging Celtics.

L.A. held a 42-31 edge on the boards and was able to get to the basket at will. The Lakers are the bigger team in the series, and also the more athletic team.

Boston needs to play harder and smarter to have a chance.

Rajon Rondo finished with 13 points and eight assists, and had a +/- of -17. Meanwhile, Nate Robinson was scoreless in 13 minutes but had a +/- of +10. Amazingly, the Celtics offense looked better when Rondo was on the bench.

Rondo was content to settle for jump shots against Kobe Byrant’s sagging defense.

Kobe finished with 30 points, seven rebounds, and six assists. He looked extremely fresh and active after another extended layoff.

Doc Rivers has some adjustments to make heading into Game 2. Kevin Garnett scored 16 points in 34 minutes but wasn’t very effective. He looked exhausted by the third quarter and struggled on both ends. Rivers needs to reduce his minutes a bit.

The same can be said for the wounded Kendrick Perkins, who was outplayed by the wounded Andrew Bynum. Perkins can barely get off the ground thanks to a balky knee.

Rasheed Wallace has played well when given a chance in the playoffs and should get starters minutes in the remainder of the NBA Finals. His shooting ability helps the Celtics space the floor for Rondo and Pierce to get to the basket.

The Celtics will look to bounce back Sunday in Game 2.


Celtics demonstrate how little K.G. matters, dominate Heat in Game 2

The Celtics looked like a happy bunch without K.G. in the lineup Tuesday.

As an avid NBA fan, I’ve watched Kevin Garnett for years. I’ve admired his passion, dedication, and competitiveness. But as far as I’m concerned, he should have just left it at “ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!!!”

Time to stop talking and show you can still play.

The Celtics didn’t miss a beat without the suspended Garnett. Glen Davis filled in nicely, finishing with 23 points and eight rebounds. More importantly, Boston avoided stupid technicals and pointless confrontations with opponents Tuesday night in the 106-77 rout of Miami.

Davis’ performance was surprising and probably won’t–and shouldn’t from Miami’s point of view–be replicated again anytime soon. His production raises questions about just how much KG matters at this point in his career.

Garnett’s intensity and reputation for jaw-jacking has always being noticeable. It’s hasn’t always been so damn annoying.

Whether it’s yelling “I’m right here” at LeBron during the Easter Sunday game, or elbowing Quentin Richardson in Game 1 to draw a suspension, his antics are the only reminder that he is actually on the court.

Garnett’s statistical impact is minimal–similar to Taj Gibson’s numbers this year. His emotional impact is detrimental–his whining intensifies the Celtics’ bad attitude.

The Celtics would be a better team without Garnett. At this point, he is playing on one leg. He lacks explosion to make a difference defensively and is simply a spot-up jump shooter on the offensive end.

Garnett has already fallen far enough. I don’t want to see him tarnish his legacy by acting like a fool in the twilight of his career.