Checking in in the second half of game 5 Philadephia 76ers against the Boston CelticsBrandon Bass at the line for two shots…. 57 all after the made free throw by bass. Sixers seem to get a little flustered by 1) the celtics defense 2)their lack of execution… Meanwhile, Thaddeus Young with a missed baby hook shot is not his shot. The Celtics are on a tear as of right now a 12-2 run within the last 6 minnutes or so. The Sixers must capitalize and cannot keep turning the ball over. It’s absolutely crucial to take care of the rock. One thing abou the Philly defense in my mind is their pick and roll coverage. The previous play was a corner pick and roll with Rondo and Bass and once Andre got caught off that screen, both the players focused too much on the dribble drive by Rajon and overhelped which led to the dunk by Brandon Bass. The Sixers must look at this pick and roll coverage post-game and look at film because this particular defensive liability is significant in determining their success in the future games against the Celtics and the Eastern finals, which a popular choice to move on in that Indy series is the Miami Heat despite them missing Chris Bosh and his shooting ability. At this point, we’ve seen two three turnovers by the Sixers that has been a result of tremendous defensive pressure by the Boston Celtics as they are zoning in and disrupting the Sixers offensive flow. One thing that see in the celtics defense are that they are pushing the Sixers frontcourt further than where they would like to catch the basketball therefore out of their comfort zone. My thought is that the sixers in executing their post pass very porously. Much like the entry passes into the post ala the Triangle offense by the Lakers, very often when Bynum or Gasol is fighting to get position in the low block, there’s always a couple things that happen: 1) the 1 that makes the pass to the wing will cut to the strong side corner and receive the pass (if they can’t get the pass from the wing into the post) from the wing and into the low block to gasol or bynum. Either one of those two guards/forwards who initiated those entry passes will make a baseline or basket cut to the weakside corner. The offensive spacing will then move a couple feet to the left to allow the same 15 feet spacing between EACH of the players. (2) would be the weakside forward or guard cutting to that strong side left corner.Getting back to the game, the Sixers are 11 down. Now wonder they are down. They are just running some pick and rolls with the forward jumping up to the free throw line, and Lou Williams shooting an off balance fadeaway. Also, they are running a 4-1 offence where you get everyone except for Elton Brand to be oriented on the perimeter. That is a huge no no. You want to run your offence through Elton Brand (and if he gets going to use him as a decoy) and set him up where he is comfortable, in the post. When you got four guys who are setting up in the perimeter, because of Garnett’s strength, he will be pushed out more. Hence, Brand should really set up on the weakside of where the ball handler is, and a Sixer should set a screen for him allowing him to make a curl cut into that low post where he’ll get deeper. 84-68 after a completed three point play by a potential triple double man for tonight’s game, Rajon Rondo. I am a huge underdog fan. I always like those teams who plays with a chip on their shoulder to make it up the hierarchy of the NBA playoffs. Myself personally, not much of a Sixer fan, have a feeling the Sixers will fail to advance to the Eastern conference finals. Give a lot of credit to Doc Rivers and the coaching staff for the Boston Celtics. The defense obviously speaks for itself at this point in time, the plays that the Celtics are running, simple pick and roll, weakside basket cuts, they are absolutely on a tear. The sixers are shooting 45.7% from the field, an atrocious 50% from the free throw line, and 33.3% from downtown. This young club is not an exceptional three point shooting team by any stretch of the imagination while they do have Jodie Meeks, Lou Williams who are scorers and not “shooters” per se. The sixers have turned the ball over 15 times where the Celtics have capitalized off of that by contributing 18 points so far off those Philadelphia turnovers. Much like Reggie Miller said two games ago in the OKC versus Lakers game at the Chesapeake Arena, you must convert the defense and opponent’s turnovers into points, and that’s exactly what the celtics are doing in this game right now with themselves leading by 19, 93-74. With the Celtics leading 3-2 in the series, a likely matchup for them will be against the Miami Heat, a rematch of conference finals from not too long ago, it’ll be something to watch in the coming days..
Sixers and Celtics game 5