Round 2: Celtics vs Cavs

JakeRae

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I didn’t see that post, I don’t read all the threads, but that’s laughable. I said the other day either here or Discord, I forget, that Cleveland without those two are a lottery team fighting to grab a play-in spot. I stand by that.
This is probably right. It’s only probably because the drop off after the Heat to Chicago/Atlanta this year is quite large. The Cavs without those two still might be better than Bulls, which is not to say they are a good team. I think they’d clearly still be in the play in picture (i.e. better than Brooklyn). I think we’re basically saying the same thing though. I’m mostly noting that the non-playoff play in teams in the East this year were bad enough that the Cavs might still be a playoff team even playing down two of their best players.
 

radsoxfan

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Without Allen AND Mitchell however they are a horrific offensive team and a borderline lottery team. They got the Strus game with the help from Merrill in the 1H before Garland got it going in the 2H…at home in their first game without Mitchell which is almost always their big step up game. I think Cleveland could lose by 40+ in Boston with a 63-35 halftime score not out of the question. I expect a bloodbath.
Agreed.

Calling the Cavs without Mitchell and Allen good is bananas. They are a 48 win team without their two best players. They are now forced to play rotation guys starter minutes and play guys like the corpse of Tristan Thompson actual NBA playoff bench minutes in 2024. Garland and Mobley are not particularly good. No chance this is even a .500 team.

They played hard and like any NBA team they can get hot and win a game, but this is a bad team.

Also, I'm sure Mitchell will be out for game 5.
 

Devizier

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Without Allen AND Mitchell however they are a horrific offensive team
Just to make it clear, I’m commenting on a retrospective analysis of the Celtics’ postseason performance, which as many have noted is exactly in line with their regular season

Interesting digression, though
 

Captaincoop

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I didn’t see that post, I don’t read all the threads, but that’s laughable. I said the other day either here or Discord, I forget, that Cleveland without those two are a lottery team fighting to grab a play-in spot. I stand by that.
That feels indisputable. What's left of the Cavs is a totally punchless team at this point. And more importantly, you made a prescient point in another post - they had the big mental step-up game in Cleveland, and still lost. Game two without the star is when reality and mental fatigue usually sets in. The C's should absolutely roll tonight as the star-free Cavs come back to Earth.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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The problem with making predictions is that people who are wrong about them often act out. I hate when it happens because it blows the vibes.

But there it is - the Cavs with their injuries are a sub playoff team. It should be just like a late January game against a load mananaged team. Except their entire roster has been eating, sleeping and breathing how to slow Boston for weeks now. I would consider that a factor but hey its absolutely going to be a blowout...

There will likely be tears before this is over.
 

InstaFace

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I mean, let's not fall over ourselves to avoid giving the Celtics credit for making them look like a lottery team at times. As pointed out, they still have DPOY runner-up Mobley, all-star Garland, and an always hot and up-for-ruckus Max Strus out there, plus a 40% 3-point shooter in Okoro, and more shooting off the bench (Merrill, Wade, Niang, etc, not to mention LeVert). Garland can still create his own shot and beat every Celtic not named Jrue off the dribble unless we help. It's a big downgrade from Mitchell to whoever they start in his place, but this is not a team devoid of high-level talent, and the dismissiveness here seems a bit excessive to me. Part of why Cleveland looked so bad at times (and only kept somewhat in the game in Game 4 by hot 3-point shooting in the first half) is that the Celtics D was playing really well, and we got out on the fast break a bunch while limiting their effectiveness on the break.

It's not just "they're bad" or "we're good", it's both, of course. But people are posting as if Cleveland is a bunch of chumps without Mitchell and Jarrett Allen that we should roll over by 20+ a game. They're not. We should win every game we play against that lineup, but the margins are still pretty fine and the talent we're facing is still pretty substantial. They would still win playoff games against a bunch of other playoff teams.
 

Cellar-Door

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I think the "good" without them is a misinterpretation of an earlier post I made.

I said they are still a "real" team without them. Which they obviously are, they have an All-Star type player, and another very good one, they have legit NBA top 7 guys etc.

Where I went further is I said if they had started the year without those 2 on the roster, but rather some non-stars like MLE level (a Monk, DiVincenzo type and a Reid/Claxton/Zubac/Gafford type) they would have a good shot at a playoff spot. Which I don't think is unreasonable, we saw a team with younger, worse versions of Garland/Mobley as their top 2 make the playoffs a few years ago. The identity would be different, better D but offense would be an issue, basically reverse Pacers.
So not that this team without those guys and no replacements is a playoff team or good, but rather, it's still an NBA team with legit rotation guys, significantly better than the no-Jimmy Heat to me.
 

jezza1918

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Feels like a lot of this stuff speaks to how deep the league is talent wise. I agree the cavs without Mitchell/Allen are probably a lottery team...but at same time on any given night can put up a fight against the best teams in hoops for all the reasons @InstaFace laid out a few minutes ago.
 

Auger34

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I mean, let's not fall over ourselves to avoid giving the Celtics credit for making them look like a lottery team at times. As pointed out, they still have DPOY runner-up Mobley, all-star Garland, and an always hot and up-for-ruckus Max Strus out there, plus a 40% 3-point shooter in Okoro, and more shooting off the bench (Merrill, Wade, Niang, etc, not to mention LeVert). Garland can still create his own shot and beat every Celtic not named Jrue off the dribble unless we help. It's a big downgrade from Mitchell to whoever they start in his place, but this is not a team devoid of high-level talent, and the dismissiveness here seems a bit excessive to me. Part of why Cleveland looked so bad at times (and only kept somewhat in the game in Game 4 by hot 3-point shooting in the first half) is that the Celtics D was playing really well, and we got out on the fast break a bunch while limiting their effectiveness on the break.

It's not just "they're bad" or "we're good", it's both, of course. But people are posting as if Cleveland is a bunch of chumps without Mitchell and Jarrett Allen that we should roll over by 20+ a game. They're not. We should win every game we play against that lineup, but the margins are still pretty fine and the talent we're facing is still pretty substantial. They would still win playoff games against a bunch of other playoff teams.
It was an overcorrection to the earlier overcorrection where posters were acting like Cleveland was still a good playoff caliber team without Allen and Mitchell.

I think @HomeRunBaker kind of nailed it. The Celtics withstood the Cavs “knockout punchc”. It was a good win and im not sure that previous Celtics teams would have pulled it out
 

jezza1918

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I mean if they're missing Allen, Mitchell and Levert... it should be a blowout though. I don't think that's off base to say.
But that's why they play the games! Jk jk. I know what you're getting at. But odds has them at about a 92% implied probability to win tonight as of now...which is obviously a heavy favorite. But even still that means about 1/10 times Cleveland wins, and Id think that implies at least a few of those Celtics wins are closer than we'd expect.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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I mean if they're missing Allen, Mitchell and Levert... it should be a blowout though. I don't think that's off base to say.
People can and will say whatever they want. The problem is if its not a blowout, people tend to get upset that the thing in their head isn't matching reality and they often lash out. After a loss, its completely understandable but this happens even when the team we are rooting for is winning.

I have no clue how this game turns out - I expect Boston to win but I won't be shocked if its a one score affair though its not my base case - but there are lots of scenarios where a diminished Cavs rosters keeps it close. I don't see that statement as controversial either.
 

joe dokes

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I almost always ignore what the media says about the Celtics, but it is so over the top negative that I’m kind of blown away. National media, local media, doesn’t matter.

View: https://twitter.com/CTabatabaie/status/1790499791413063803
If you start with the proposition that almost none of these talking heads actually believe what they post, it makes it a lot easier. They know their audience is made up of the easily riled. Their goal is to rile them. They don't actually know anything. And if they do, that's not the talking that gets the audience involved. They are "Judge" Judy. They are "Doctor" Phil. They aren't experts. They are human cattle prods.

I mean if they're missing Allen, Mitchell and Levert... it should be a blowout though. I don't think that's off base to say.
I disagree. There are almost no valid/reliable "should bes" in the 2nd round of any professional sports playoffs. Not playoffs, but the Celtics were beating teams while resting their top 7 players. Those games "should be" losses.

But that's why they play the games! Jk jk. I know what you're getting at. But odds has them at about a 92% implied probability to win tonight as of now...which is obviously a heavy favorite. But even still that means about 1/10 times Cleveland wins, and Id think that implies at least a few of those Celtics wins are closer than we'd expect.
No kidding. That *is* why the play the games. And the bolded is a mostly-ignored part of the odds-interpreting.
 
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HomeRunBaker

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I mean, let's not fall over ourselves to avoid giving the Celtics credit for making them look like a lottery team at times. As pointed out, they still have DPOY runner-up Mobley, all-star Garland, and an always hot and up-for-ruckus Max Strus out there, plus a 40% 3-point shooter in Okoro, and more shooting off the bench (Merrill, Wade, Niang, etc, not to mention LeVert). Garland can still create his own shot and beat every Celtic not named Jrue off the dribble unless we help. It's a big downgrade from Mitchell to whoever they start in his place, but this is not a team devoid of high-level talent, and the dismissiveness here seems a bit excessive to me. Part of why Cleveland looked so bad at times (and only kept somewhat in the game in Game 4 by hot 3-point shooting in the first half) is that the Celtics D was playing really well, and we got out on the fast break a bunch while limiting their effectiveness on the break.

It's not just "they're bad" or "we're good", it's both, of course. But people are posting as if Cleveland is a bunch of chumps without Mitchell and Jarrett Allen that we should roll over by 20+ a game. They're not. We should win every game we play against that lineup, but the margins are still pretty fine and the talent we're facing is still pretty substantial. They would still win playoff games against a bunch of other playoff teams.
I mean they aren't Pistons-level lottery but on a neutral court they would be underdogs against every remaining playoff team. So could they win a playoff game against someone else, sure.....would they be any different than Brooklyn, Atlanta, or Houston if they went through the season with this current group? I don't think so. I disagree that there are fine margins between this Celtics team and that Cavs team. They needed a Strus/Merrill 1H to lose by 7 at home in a game that Boston comfortably controlled for most of the 2H.
 

HomeRunBaker

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If you start with the proposition that almost none of these talking heads actually believe what they post, it makes it a lot easier. They know their audience is made up of the easily riled. Their goal is to rile them. They don't actually know anything.
I love this!! The one challenge Joe has this postseason is to create an edge for these guys to have which we know hasn't always been evident, or needed to be evident, thus far in these playoffs. Yes, please keep talking media....we want all these clippings to be posted in the locker room and discussed each and every day. I'm not sure I necessarily disagree with any of them except for Perkins as Tatum is now building into these playoffs.
 

InstaFace

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Some playoff stats and rankings:

3-point attempt rate: Boston 46.4% (#1 in playoffs). Of teams still competing, #2 Dallas is at 41.3%, #3 Indiana at 40.6%. Now-eliminated Philly was at 42.8%.

True Shooting %: Boston .593 (#1 in playoffs). Followed by MIN at .588 and IND at .587. Cleveland is #13/16 at .536, which would have ranked 30th in the regular season, below Portland at .539. Boston's regular-season TS% was .609, narrowly above #2 OKC .608 and #3 IND .606.

Pace: Boston #13 at 90.9 possessions per 48 minutes, functionally tied for last among all playoff teams, and decently far behind the second-slowest team still playing (MIN, at 92.1). OKC (who by the way are leading in playoff DRtg at 101.7!, a huge distance over our 106.2, and aren't far behind our playoff net rating) is the fastest-pace team still playing, at 95.0, 2nd-fastest is Indiana at 93.6.

Age of team: Surprisingly, Boston is the oldest team still competing in the playoffs, with an average age (as of Feb 1st) of 28.8. Tatum being 19 isn't enough to pull that down, it seems. Denver is second-oldest at 27.3, while of course OKC is youngest at 23.1 years old, followed by Indy (25.4) and Dallas (26.0). There were 5 teams older than the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs, none won more than 2 games.

Offensive rebounding: We are middle-of-the-pack among remaining teams. NYK of course lead, at 32.1%, after basically never letting Indiana claim a miss last night; they led the regular-season numbers in that stat too, at 29.4%. Boston was 12th at 24.9%, and in the playoffs is 10th/16 and 6th/8 at 23.3%, ahead of OKC and CLE.

Free Throw attempt rate (FTAs per FGA): Boston's offense is middle of the pack (9th/16 and 4th/8) at .243, no matter what Bickerstaff says to the media. Of remaining teams, Dallas (.300!) and MIN (.286) are way ahead; Orlando led the regular-season rankings in this, and would've been really annoying in that regard had we played them. Cleveland was 21st in the regular season at .234 and is at .208 in the playoffs; for all of Mitchell and Garland's driving ability, they don't generate a lot of fouls and we don't give up a ton either.

However, FT attempt rate on defense, the Celtics are far and away #1 in the playoffs at a microscopic .111 (!), not even in the same ballpark as #2 OKC (.169) or #3 DEN (.170). Some of that is getting a good whistle but a lot of that is our season-long emphasis on defending without fouling, in which we also led the regular-season rankings at .145. Minnesota (.237) is worst at giving up FTs among remaining teams, followed by Cleveland (.218). We might be able to remember an occasional and-1, but the stats say that we might give up some drives but we are not putting players at the line, and that has made a huge difference in our overall defensive efficiency.
 

InstaFace

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It was an overcorrection to the earlier overcorrection where posters were acting like Cleveland was still a good playoff caliber team without Allen and Mitchell.

I think @HomeRunBaker kind of nailed it. The Celtics withstood the Cavs “knockout punchc”. It was a good win and im not sure that previous Celtics teams would have pulled it out
I buy this synthesis. Especially your last sentence. If there's one thing I'm most annoyed by with the tone on here *gestures at forum in general*, it's the extent to which people are failing to recognize how much better and different this team is than recent editions. Monday's game - and the fact that we won it, despite Cleveland rallying around the flag and being a cornered animal - is a perfect example that is whooshing right over some heads.
 

Jimbodandy

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Some playoff stats and rankings:

3-point attempt rate: Boston 46.4% (#1 in playoffs). Of teams still competing, #2 Dallas is at 41.3%, #3 Indiana at 40.6%. Now-eliminated Philly was at 42.8%.

True Shooting %: Boston .593 (#1 in playoffs). Followed by MIN at .588 and IND at .587. Cleveland is #13/16 at .536, which would have ranked 30th in the regular season, below Portland at .539. Boston's regular-season TS% was .609, narrowly above #2 OKC .608 and #3 IND .606.

Pace: Boston #13 at 90.9 possessions per 48 minutes, functionally tied for last among all playoff teams, and decently far behind the second-slowest team still playing (MIN, at 92.1). OKC (who by the way are leading in playoff DRtg at 101.7!, a huge distance over our 106.2, and aren't far behind our playoff net rating) is the fastest-pace team still playing, at 95.0, 2nd-fastest is Indiana at 93.6.

Age of team: Surprisingly, Boston is the oldest team still competing in the playoffs, with an average age (as of Feb 1st) of 28.8. Tatum being 19 isn't enough to pull that down, it seems. Denver is second-oldest at 27.3, while of course OKC is youngest at 23.1 years old, followed by Indy (25.4) and Dallas (26.0). There were 5 teams older than the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs, none won more than 2 games.

Offensive rebounding: We are middle-of-the-pack among remaining teams. NYK of course lead, at 32.1%, after basically never letting Indiana claim a miss last night; they led the regular-season numbers in that stat too, at 29.4%. Boston was 12th at 24.9%, and in the playoffs is 10th/16 and 6th/8 at 23.3%, ahead of OKC and CLE.

Free Throw attempt rate (FTAs per FGA): Boston's offense is middle of the pack (9th/16 and 4th/8) at .243, no matter what Bickerstaff says to the media. Of remaining teams, Dallas (.300!) and MIN (.286) are way ahead; Orlando led the regular-season rankings in this, and would've been really annoying in that regard had we played them. Cleveland was 21st in the regular season at .234 and is at .208 in the playoffs; for all of Mitchell and Garland's driving ability, they don't generate a lot of fouls and we don't give up a ton either.

However, FT attempt rate on defense, the Celtics are far and away #1 in the playoffs at a microscopic .111 (!), not even in the same ballpark as #2 OKC (.169) or #3 DEN (.170). Some of that is getting a good whistle but a lot of that is our season-long emphasis on defending without fouling, in which we also led the regular-season rankings at .145. Minnesota (.237) is worst at giving up FTs among remaining teams, followed by Cleveland (.218). We might be able to remember an occasional and-1, but the stats say that we might give up some drives but we are not putting players at the line, and that has made a huge difference in our overall defensive efficiency.
Interesting numbers, mostly unsurprising (except Pace, I suppose).

Really not surprised that our opponents' FTA are low. Celtics are the least likely to have guys in disadvantaged situations on defense. Not that it doesn't happen, but most of the Celtics can credibly cover most opponents without fouling, relative to the average team.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I think all this kind of handwringing is first two rounds stuff. If they close out this series, I think we move on to the next phase where there will be much less worrying about what each result might mean for future performance. Because really, the discussion about how they playing at home, or not winning well enough against undermanned teams, is just another way to ask “but what if they do that again the Knicks/Pacers/Nuggets.”

If they get to the third or fourth rounds, I think we all flip to recognizing that all that matters is being one point better. Against the teams remaining, I think we start to have a better appreciation that we are at the level of competition where stars can get shut down and where opposing teams can go off, but where all that really matters is getting the W.

If it is the Knicks will there still be “we should crush them,” kind of stuff, or panic if Tatum has fourth quarter turnovers, or Jaylen starts missing free throws, or we perceive week three point defense? Yeah. But I don’t think there will be handwringing about wins. All the handwringing has been about what it might mean in rounds 3 or 4.

I know it didn’t feel like that last year. Because in our minds, the Heat didn’t deserve to be on the same floor with us. They were an inferior 8 seed. We ignored that they had blitzed through the Bucks and Knicks and, as was pretty clear by the end, were much better than advertised. I don’t think we’ll be tricked this year and will just be grateful for wins. I probably am underestimating our capacity for panic, but I really do feel like closing out the Cavs would put and end to all the “what does it mean for the late playoffs“ stuff, because it will be the late playoffs.
 

Curtis Pride

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I don't know how predictive this is, but I have noticed that in the playoffs, the Celtics are 7-1 when they have at least 2 20+ point scorers, and 7-0 when their opponents have just 1 player scoring 20+ points. On the Cavs, that's Mitchell, although Garland scored 30 in Game 4 while Mitchell was out. in Game 2, the other 20+ scorers were Mobley and LeVert. In the Dean Wade game, Wade scored 23 and Allen scored 21. With Mitchell, Allen, and LeVert out, Garland may once again be the only Cav over 20 because most of the others average less than 10 points per game. It would be like if the Celtics had to play without Tatum, Porzingis, and Holiday, and relying on Brown, White, Pritchard, Hauser, and Horford to win. Sure they could still compete, but they'll be missing a significant amount of talent.

Yes, the game could still be close due to random variance, but it's more likely that the Celtics win by 20+.
 

lovegtm

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I think the "good" without them is a misinterpretation of an earlier post I made.

I said they are still a "real" team without them. Which they obviously are, they have an All-Star type player, and another very good one, they have legit NBA top 7 guys etc.

Where I went further is I said if they had started the year without those 2 on the roster, but rather some non-stars like MLE level (a Monk, DiVincenzo type and a Reid/Claxton/Zubac/Gafford type) they would have a good shot at a playoff spot. Which I don't think is unreasonable, we saw a team with younger, worse versions of Garland/Mobley as their top 2 make the playoffs a few years ago. The identity would be different, better D but offense would be an issue, basically reverse Pacers.
So not that this team without those guys and no replacements is a playoff team or good, but rather, it's still an NBA team with legit rotation guys, significantly better than the no-Jimmy Heat to me.
Yes, at the end of the day, any team with a rotation of real NBA rotation players and one scorer (Garland is that, when he's on/healthy) can beat any other NBA team in one game. They can make it close in other games.

This is about as easy as it gets for an NBA 2nd round matchup, but that doesn't mean you can't lose games or that the other team can't keep it close.

Cleveland probably loses tonight because of the talent gap and letdown after Game 4, but anything can happen when a team has real rotation players to roll out there.
 

Captaincoop

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Yes, at the end of the day, any team with a rotation of real NBA rotation players and one scorer (Garland is that, when he's on/healthy) can beat any other NBA team in one game. They can make it close in other games.

This is about as easy as it gets for an NBA 2nd round matchup, but that doesn't mean you can't lose games or that the other team can't keep it close.

Cleveland probably loses tonight because of the talent gap and letdown after Game 4, but anything can happen when a team has real rotation players to roll out there.
Of course anything can happen, it's one game, nothing is ever certain, yadda yadda yadda. But this is as close to a sure thing as there is in the second round of the NBA playoffs, and the Celtics should roll tonight. There are scenarios where they could lose, but not without completely beating themselves. This series, and really the playoffs in general, could not reasonably have broken any better for the C's.
 

lovegtm

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Of course anything can happen, it's one game, nothing is ever certain, yadda yadda yadda. But this is as close to a sure thing as there is in the second round of the NBA playoffs, and the Celtics should roll tonight. There are scenarios where they could lose, but not without completely beating themselves. This series, and really the playoffs in general, could not reasonably have broken any better for the C's.
As the IST showed, inferior teams can go quite far in 1-game scenarios. Losing would require the Cs beating themselves to a degree, but teams beat themselves all the time. The other team is trying hard to disrupt you and get you to beat yourself.

I expect them to win, but there's a reason that series have 7 games.
 

JCizzle

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Maybe I listen to too much stuff from the same couple Ringer folks, but I thought the rumor was that he always wanted to be on a NY team?
 

joe dokes

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If there's one thing I'm most annoyed by with the tone on here *gestures at forum in general*, it's the extent to which people are failing to recognize how much better and different this team is than recent editions. Monday's game - and the fact that we won it, despite Cleveland rallying around the flag and being a cornered animal - is a perfect example that is whooshing right over some heads.
Right. They've become a team that shits the bed about the same as other really good teams. (That is, occasionally), and wins most of the games they "should." Both the "occasionally" and the "most" are the "differences" you point out.
 

the moops

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They would have to get very creative in shedding salary to do that.
I am sure there is also a theory that he is going to sign for the vet minimum or some bullshit.

Seems to me that Lebron is in LA until he retires. They have enough salary and assets to make one last push
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I don't have any stats to back it up, but from the eye test, it seems to me that Garland was most effective in game 4 when the Celtics were running the auto-switch when he would take the ball up. As soon as he lost Jrue, he was a menace. There were a couple of possessions where Tatum switch to Garland, and it just wasn't a great matchup. Garland was a bit too shifty. In the fourth quarter, Celtics stopped the auto-switch and Jrue was more actively fighting over screens to stay with Garland. Garland actually did ok in those possessions but it was much harder. Bickerstaff countered by having others bring up the ball, and then they would try to rub Jrue off on screens.

My perception was that Garland was a bit of a tough matchup for the Celtics in their no-Mitchell offense. The more that Jrue can try to stay with him, the better.

In the stats that matter camp, I offer rebounds:

Game 1 +11
Game 2 -13
Game 3 +9
Game 4 +16

Now, in some senses rebounds are a derivative stat because more defensive rebounds are available when the opponent is missing baskets. I accept that, but I still think rebounding is a effort stat and gives you an indication of overall team performance. Win the boards, win the series.
 

SteveF

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However, FT attempt rate on defense, the Celtics are far and away #1 in the playoffs at a microscopic .111 (!), not even in the same ballpark as #2 OKC (.169) or #3 DEN (.170). Some of that is getting a good whistle but a lot of that is our season-long emphasis on defending without fouling, in which we also led the regular-season rankings at .145. Minnesota (.237) is worst at giving up FTs among remaining teams, followed by Cleveland (.218). We might be able to remember an occasional and-1, but the stats say that we might give up some drives but we are not putting players at the line, and that has made a huge difference in our overall defensive efficiency.
They are at +9 net FTA/100. Lakers led the league (much to the annoyance of NBA twitter from what I gather) during the regular season at +6.1 net FTA/100. +9 is an absolutely massive number.
Celtics net -2.9 FGA/100. So they are winning the shooting possession/true shot attempt battle given 9 FTA > 2.9 FGA. They've mostly accomplished this by leading the league in defensive rebounding in the playoffs: 82.4% Dreb% on opponent FGA. Playoff average is 72.53%. Much of that is probably about the opponents the Celtics have faced (Miami is small, Cleveland minus Allen is small) and the opponent shot profile (jacking up 3s praying for variance), but being that much better than average on Dreb% is still an accomplishment in spite of that.
 

8slim

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People can and will say whatever they want. The problem is if its not a blowout, people tend to get upset that the thing in their head isn't matching reality and they often lash out. After a loss, its completely understandable but this happens even when the team we are rooting for is winning.

I have no clue how this game turns out - I expect Boston to win but I won't be shocked if its a one score affair though its not my base case - but there are lots of scenarios where a diminished Cavs rosters keeps it close. I don't see that statement as controversial either.
There could be a gas main explosion in the arena tonight too. The world is a crazy place.

I wonder if people in the arena would lash out, though. That's the important thing here.
 

Ed Hillel

Wants to be startin somethin
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Dec 12, 2007
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Cleveland really has no reason to trade Mitchell to LA. This will be Dame all over again, unless Comic Sans feels a loyalty to LeBron.
 
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DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Dec 24, 2002
49,792
There could be a gas main explosion in the arena tonight too. The world is a crazy place.

I wonder if people in the arena would lash out, though. That's the important thing here.
If you are a person who enjoys feeling aggrieved - and not @ you but there is definitely a contingent here on this board who are constantly seeking out beef - please ignore my post.

My only point is that if we keep putting up false standards - in this example game five will almost certainly be a Boston blowout - when in fact the outcome is far less certain (Boston could lose, the Cs could be in a close game but win etc) it only fuels all the disappointment around close playoff wins. A playoff win is a playoff win and should be celebrated as such. We actually have posters here on record as upset/worried after a win.

I get that you don't agree - you appear to demand high quality, low stress outcomes for your teams. I want that too but I see little evidence that its a realistic expectation.
 

slamminsammya

Member
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Jul 31, 2006
10,228
San Francisco
If you are a person who enjoys feeling aggrieved - and not @ you but there is definitely a contingent here on this board who are constantly seeking out beef - please ignore my post.

My only point is that if we keep putting up false standards - in this example game five will almost certainly be a Boston blowout - when in fact the outcome is far less certain (Boston could lose, the Cs could be in a close game but win etc) it only fuels all the disappointment around close playoff wins. A playoff win is a playoff win and should be celebrated as such. We actually have posters here on record as upset/worried after a win.

I get that you don't agree - you appear to demand high quality, low stress outcomes for your teams. I want that too but I see little evidence that its a realistic expectation.
I agree somewhat with the conclusion but I think the reasoning is off. i think it’s perfectly reasonable to feel concern even after a win. i think the issue with some folks is their level of concern is miscalibrated, not that they feel concern in the first place.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Dec 24, 2002
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I agree somewhat with the conclusion but I think the reasoning is off. i think it’s perfectly reasonable to feel concern even after a win. i think the issue with some folks is their level of concern is miscalibrated, not that they feel concern in the first place.
Fair enough.

I am just pointing out that proclaiming "this will be a blowout" and then holding the team to that standard feels like the source of quite a bit of anxiety around these parts. When folks make predictions here you can see a pattern when reality doesn't match. The results are bitterness and drama even during wins
 

TomRicardo

rusty cohlebone
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Feb 6, 2006
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Yeah…I believe there was a post on here earlier that said that the Cavs minus Mitchell and Allen are roughly at the Pacers level. That’s fucking insane. That team is barely play-in level
Defensively or overall? Defensively Cavs still might be better but the Pacers' offense is light years better more than enough to bridge the gap. It is insane to compare the two as overall, Cavs without Mitchell and Allen.
 
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Ed Hillel

Wants to be startin somethin
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Dec 12, 2007
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I don't care if they win on a last second 3 pointer from half court or a 20 point blowout. But it is very important that they win. Rest for Al and a few more days of hope for KP.
Does this affect KP at all? Wouldn’t extending the series actually give him more rest? Not that I want that…

Al is the one that needs it badly. Plus less injury risk to just close it out, of course.
 

8slim

has trust issues
SoSH Member
Nov 6, 2001
25,658
Unreal America
If you are a person who enjoys feeling aggrieved - and not @ you but there is definitely a contingent here on this board who are constantly seeking out beef - please ignore my post.

My only point is that if we keep putting up false standards - in this example game five will almost certainly be a Boston blowout - when in fact the outcome is far less certain (Boston could lose, the Cs could be in a close game but win etc) it only fuels all the disappointment around close playoff wins. A playoff win is a playoff win and should be celebrated as such. We actually have posters here on record as upset/worried after a win.

I get that you don't agree - you appear to demand high quality, low stress outcomes for your teams. I want that too but I see little evidence that its a realistic expectation.
Regarding the bolded, that's not me at all, and everything I've posted here in the past 48 hours supports that.

I do think it's odd that you seem to believe there should be no discussion of how the team performed, as long as they won. The point you keep making about any outcome being possible is absurdly obvious. If you think that should the Cs shoot 2-34 from three tonight and gut out a 1 point, overtime win, we should do nothing but cartwheels in celebration and not talk about the issues evident in the game... well, then I guess we just have a very different expectation of what a message board exists for.
 

trs

Member
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Aug 19, 2010
584
Madrid
Some playoff stats and rankings:

3-point attempt rate: Boston 46.4% (#1 in playoffs). Of teams still competing, #2 Dallas is at 41.3%, #3 Indiana at 40.6%. Now-eliminated Philly was at 42.8%.

Free Throw attempt rate (FTAs per FGA): Boston's offense is middle of the pack (9th/16 and 4th/8) at .243, no matter what Bickerstaff says to the media. Of remaining teams, Dallas (.300!) and MIN (.286) are way ahead; Orlando led the regular-season rankings in this, and would've been really annoying in that regard had we played them. Cleveland was 21st in the regular season at .234 and is at .208 in the playoffs; for all of Mitchell and Garland's driving ability, they don't generate a lot of fouls and we don't give up a ton either.
<snip>
However, FT attempt rate on defense, the Celtics are far and away #1 in the playoffs at a microscopic .111 (!), not even in the same ballpark as #2 OKC (.169) or #3 DEN (.170). Some of that is getting a good whistle but a lot of that is our season-long emphasis on defending without fouling, in which we also led the regular-season rankings at .145. Minnesota (.237) is worst at giving up FTs among remaining teams, followed by Cleveland (.218). We might be able to remember an occasional and-1, but the stats say that we might give up some drives but we are not putting players at the line, and that has made a huge difference in our overall defensive efficiency.
All really interesting stats. I also wonder if our opponents take fewer foul shots because we shoot so many 3s (and make them). If the Celtics are scoring 3 points every 4th time down the floor in one shot, well, that's going to force the opponents to try to score at that pace too. Now, I know 3PAs can draw fouls too, but I think we can assume those shots draw fouls less frequently than a generic 2PA.

Looking at regular season stats, the Celtics were 23rd in the league in opponents' 3-point attempts. Given that the Celtics were first in the league in 3-point attempts, there were only 7 other teams in NBA who "gave up" more 3-point attempts than the Celtics and the Celtics obviously didn't have to play the one team that led the league in attempts.

Anyway, not that exciting, and I'm sure that the quality of the Celts' defense and the emphasis on defending without fouling has an impact, but I also think it's that we're forcing other teams into launching 3s at a pace that is greater than most teams, making it harder for them to get to the line.
 

the moops

Member
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Jan 19, 2016
4,997
Saint Paul, MN
Cleveland really has no reason to trade him to LA. This will be Dame all over again, unless Comic Sans feels a loyalty to LeBron.
They may have a reason in that nobody is gonna offer up the best deal if that team thinks Mitchell won't re-sign with them. Dame was at least signed for two years when he got traded. Mitchell only has one more, so a bit more leverage