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Monday, March 11, 2013

We Will All Be Thunder Fans In June So You Might As Well Jump On The Bandwagon Now

If you call yourself a basketball fan, I have to assume that you are a big fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder. They are by far the most fun and exciting team to watch in the NBA led by the transcendent Kevin Durant. More importantly, even though they lost to them in the NBA Finals last season, they represent the most serious threat to a repeat by the Miami Heat. Who doesn't support that?

This afternoon, the Celtics (34-28, 12-19 away) lost to the Thunder (47-16, 28-4 home) 91-78 at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Boston's five-game win streak ended but honestly, they played about as well as we could hope for given that they had somehow beaten Oklahoma City 108-100 on November 23 at TD Garden and since the Thunder are basically unbeatable at home. Did I mention that they are the best team in the Western Conference (sorry Spurs)?

The C's were right in it, down only three (68-65) heading into the fourth quarter before Durant (23 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists) and crazy Russell Westbrook (15 points) did their thing in winning time. Kevin Martin (12 points) was the only other Thunder in double-figures, former Celtic Kendrick Perkins had six points, five rebounds and five assists while BC's Reggie Jackson added six points and four rebounds.

Paul Pierce (20 points, 6 assists) played well but he didn't get much help since Boston scored just two points more than its season-low (77 at Clippers, Dec. 27). The Celtics shot 10 of 40 (25% for math majors) in the second half, showing how their defense-especially Avery Bradley (12 points, 5 assists) on Westbrook (season-low 2 assists-kept them in it for probably longer than they deserved. Kevin Garnett (5-for-19 from the field) couldn't find his shooting touch all game and managed a very quiet 10 points and 11 rebounds. Brandon Bass had a season-high 13 rebounds including five offensive boards, haha I have no idea what that means.

In his first game back in Oklahoma City, Jeff Green (8 points) was a non-factor, he shot 2-for-11 from the field in 28 minutes with three turnovers, three fouls and two rebounds. Haha yikes.

There were numbers for the Celts to be happy about: they hit three more 3-pointers (7-4) than the Thunder and grabbed three more rebounds (44-41) with seven more offensive boards (10-3). Other than that, Oklahoma City owned everything else but that is to be expected by any rational Celtics fan.

The key for Boston is that they'll have to maintain their focus while they play a pair of really bad teams this week: the Celtics are at the Bobcats (13-50, 5th in Southeast Division) on Tuesday (7 p.m., CSN) before hosting Toronto (25-39, 4th in Northeast Division) on Wednesday (7:30 p.m., CSN) and the Bobcats on Saturday (7:30 p.m., CSN). I don't care that they have a back-to-back, they need to go 3-0 against those pathetic teams. The Bobcats once again are the worst team in the NBA although they did beat the Celtics 94-91 on February 11. Maybe that'll teach the C's not to underestimate them again.

UPDATE 3/11: Shavlik Randolph was signed to a second 10-day contract. No idea why, he's a stiff that hasn't played yet as far as I know.

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