Game #75 Preview: Spurs vs. Celtics

Anger, Angst, and Attitude

So, here we go. Good feelings gone. Let's just start with some tunes to sum up the suckitude.


What’s Going On? No, not the brilliant and smooth Marvin Gaye classic, but the godawful pile of rubbish from the nineties by a pretentious, grating, pseudogrunge quartet called 4 Non Blondes. It turns out this song isn’t even called "What’s Going On," or even "Hey-ey-ey." It’s called "What’s Up!" Uh huh. This song not only embodies my general sense of disoriented confusion, but the singer's lack of singing ability and pompous, self-important lyrics give me that wow-my-tooth-hurts-but-I-can’t-stop-sucking-on-it kind of feeling. And you can go ahead and TWSS me! See if I care! All I know is, this song perfectly captures for me the way I have been feeling during these past four games.


Freefalling. Yes, my friends, that’s what we are doing right now. When will it stop? I don’t know, Alice. But what a video, huh? Oh those bygone days, when performers sang directly into the camera, and video directors interpreted the lyrics ever so literally.

Loser. Soy un perdedor, indeed.

OK, on to the game, I suppose...

The Spurs and Celtics are going through some similar times right now. This is only fitting, as the two teams are in some ways mirror images of each other, one in each conference. Both have had several days to stew over a fairly close loss on Monday. Both teams are 5-5 in their last ten games. Both have had recent health issues. Both are former champions with good coaching, savvy star vets, and up and coming youngsters. Both aspire to be champions again, and wouldn’t that be a match-up for the ages? Unfortunately, right now, BOTH TEAMS SUCK. I would be willing to bet that both of these teams’ fan bases are split into the "Don’t worry, they’ve been here before, they will turn it on when it counts" camp, and the "Oh my God, have the wheels finally fallen off?" camp. At least one camp has to be right, right?

So, like I say, it’s a perfect time for the silver and green to tangle. Which team will get up off the mat? Which team will continue to stay down for the eight count? Let’s find out, shall we?

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San Antonio Spurs vs Boston Celtics
Where: AT&T Center, San Antonio

When: March 31, 2011, 7:00 Spurs Time - Timezone Converter
Watch: TNT


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By the Numbers

Data sources:
hoopdata.com | basketball-reference.com | John Hollinger's team stats

Category Offense
(rank)
Defense
(rank)
Efficiency Rating 109.1
(2nd)
102.0
(8th)
Rebound %
24.8
(22nd)
74.5
(12th)
Field Goal % 47.3
(5th)
45.3
(12th)
3-Point % 40.1
(1st)
37.2
(24th)
Free Throw %
77.1
(12th)
75.9
(12th)
Turnover %
12.9
(6th)
12.7
(24th)
Assist %
59.4
(10th)
54.0
(3rd)
Category Offense
(rank)
Defense
(rank)
Efficiency Rating 104.4
(15th)
97.4
(2nd)
Rebound %
21.3
(30th)
75.1
(8th)
Field Goal % 48.7
(1st)
43.4
(3rd)
3-Point % 36.8
(9th)
34.2
(5th)
Free Throw %
76.7
(14th)
75.4
(8th)
Turnover %
14.4
(25th)
15.7
(2nd)
Assist %
64.1
(1st)
56.2
(10th)
Record Wins Losses
Overall 57 17
Conference 35 11
Division 10 5
Home 33 4
Away 24 13
Position Conference Division
Record 1st 1st
Lineups

Starters
PG: Tony Parker
SG: George Hill?
SF: Richard Jefferson
PF: Matt Bonner
C: Tiago Splitter?

Key Bench Players
DeJuan Blair
Antonio McDyess?
Gary Neal

Record

Wins Losses
Overall 51 22
Conference 33 11
Division 11 3
Home 29 8
Away 22 14
Position Conference Division
Record 2nd 1st

Lineups

Starters
PG: Rajon Rondo
SG: Ray Allen
SF: Paul Pierce
PF: Kevin Garnett
C: Nenad Krstic

Key Bench Players
Delonte West
Jeff Green
Glen Davis


Matchup Analysis

Point Guard

Shooting Guard

Small Forward

Power Forward
Center
Bench
Coach
Intangibles

Mojo
Winner

Starters

PG: Parker needs to dominate Fisher. Rondo and Parker are very different kinds of point guards, both very effective. If Parker is healthy, this is a wash.

SG: As of this writing, I am speculating on a Hill start here. I may be utterly wrong. This could instead be Manu. Or Anderson, or Neal. Hell, maybe Bonner starts at the 2. Surprise me, Pop!

SF: At the moment, Jefferson is struggling.

PF: Again, not sure if this is the way Pop will roll. If it is, Bonner is no match for Garnett in the paint.

C: Another iffy selection here. If Splitter is our starter, I like his chances against Krstic.

Bench

Our bench boys are playing quite well, especially in playing some scrappy defense. The Celtics are hurting for depth right now. If we get two or more of our starters back, Spurs' bench wins hands down.

Coaching

These are two fine coaches. Pop gets the edge.

Intangibles

If Tim Duncan is tangibly suited up, this should be fun...

Mojo

Mojo? What mojo? Both teams are looking for their missing Spur here. How 'bout, whoever loses the point guard battle gives the other team the Mojo Spur? Deal?

Prediction

All doom and gloom aside, if we get a couple of bodies back, Spurs win.

Key(s) to the Game

Key 1 - On offense, the Spurs need to shoot much better, especially from behind the arc.

Key 2 - Which team can bang inside and control the glass?

Key 3 - Pierce, Rondo, and Allen make a lethal backcourt. If the Spurs are short-handed, can our defense hold this trio in check?

Other Reading

Spurs

48 Minutes of Hell - Want to know more about THE GAME? Go here.

Spurs Planet - Our old friend Wayne Vore is back.

Project Spurs - Lots of love for the Silver and Black.

Spurs Nation - A daily reading of this is a must.

CELTS

CelticsBlog (SB Nation) - They bleed green over there, let me tell you. And they're much less grumpy than Red Sox fans.

Following Along

TV

TNT

Radio

WOAI 1200AM; Audio League Pass[streaming]

Online

As always, NBA league pass is recommended for those who are willing to pony up the cash. Almost every Spurs game will be broadcast there, which is especially helpful for those of us who aren't in the San Antonio area.

Please don't post links to illegal game feeds in the game thread. Links to illegal feeds are not permitted on SBNation, but you can probably find them out there on the internets if you're resourceful and desperate. You can also shoot an email to poundingtherockmail@yahoo.com(IMPORTANT: Please include your PtR username in the email for reference) for further assistance.

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