Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Celtics tank game against the Wizards, setting up showdown with Knicks in 1st round of the playoffs
By sitting the Big Four, Celtics head coach Doc Rivers waved the white flag and admitted (without saying it) that his team was resigned to the third seed in the Eastern Conference.
The starting five of Jeff Green, Glen Davis, Jermaine O'Neal, Delonte West and Von Wafer actually played pretty well last night but they still lost 95-94 in overtime to the Washington Wizards at the Verizon Center.
With the loss and Miami's win, Boston (55-26) clinched the No. 3 seed and also a first round meeting with the No. 6 New York Knicks.
Green led the Celts with 20 points and 15 rebounds, Davis had 20 points, O'Neal had 15 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks while West and Wafer both scored 11 points.
The main reason that the Big Four sat was to save their legs and prevent from injury. Unfortunately, West sprained his ankle in the third quarter and didn't return. If anyone deserves a break health-wise, it's D West. Poor guy has had to deal with a million different injuries this season. Not to mention, that's he's one of the only bench players Rivers can count on in the playoffs.
The Wizards (23-58) were led by John Wall's 24 points and nine rebounds. Jordan Crawford scored 17 points, Andray Blatche added 16 points and JaVale McGee managed 13 points.
Ironically, Boston closes the regular season with a contest tomorrow night at TD Garden vs. the Knicks. Talk about a meaningless game. You honestly couldn't pay me to go to that one.
Taking a cue from Rivers, I'm going to recharge my Celtics batteries and I'll be back for the playoffs. Looks like Game 1 will be Sunday at TD Garden. Should be a very entertaining series and I think the big-name opponent will help the Celts focus.