Game time is 9 PM ET, and just like Game 1, I'll be joined tonight by Dr. Jack Ramsay, David Thorpe, and Mike Moreau. Should be fun!
Henry Abbott: Paul Pierce says he is good to go tonight. He says the swelling is down somewhat, and is said to have been moving well at the team's practice today.
Mike Moreau: The defensive end will be the real test for him. He can plan ahead and dictate his movements on offense -- play in straighter lines. The cutting, reacting and lateral movement will tell the real story.
Henry Abbott: Watching the Celtics warm up, Paul Pierce looks absolutely comfortable. Doc Rivers said a few minutes ago that he is "not that concerned about Paul" but is perhaps more worried about Kendrick Perkins. Perkins is moving carefully in warm-ups, just shooting casual mid-range jumpers.
Henry Abbott: I'll tell you something: Pau Gasol, and Kobe Bryant, in a shoot-around, is a cornucopia of fakes. For a spell, warming up, they probably combined to average 8+ fakes per shot.
Mike Moreau: Kobe plays the game in his mind in his pre-game routine. Totally locked in and visualizes everything.
David Thorpe: All those fakes sounds like a session at our PTC. Right, Mike?!
Henry Abbott: In a press conference before the game, David Stern was brazenly anti-fireworks at games. A few minutes later: we are watching fireworks. And people call him controlling! Here is one thing he clearly does not control. He said his iron-clad rule was that when the game starts, fans, TV-viewers, and everybody else should be able to see the court.
David Thorpe: Oh yea-hi guys! Glad to be back for game 2. The sequel should be better than the original.
Mike Moreau: Chest to chin -- eyes on the rim, Coach Thorpe!
David Thorpe: Kobe makes a pass instead of a forced shot-and they get a dunk.
David Thorpe: Have to close out PP hotter.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: It's all about second chance points on both ends of the floor so far.
Mike Moreau: Perkins gets himself in the right spot offensively -- don't need mobility if you are in position.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Paul Pierce didn't show any lift heading to the basket on that drive.
David Thorpe: Vlad is too spacey to defend PP.
Henry Abbott: Radmanovic had five fouls in about 17 minutes in Game 1. Now two fouls in the first couple of minutes here. And an Ariza sighting!
David Thorpe: Ariza!! Shows you the respect Phil has for PP.
Mike Moreau: That looked like a play from the legends game -- Pierce and Perkins.
Henry Abbott: Trevor Ariza is presumably here to guard Paul Pierce. First two times Pierce gets it vs. Ariza, he waltzes straight to the rim.
Mike Moreau: Trouble with the sub is the communication and rotation. How can you leave Pierce all by himself?
Dr. Jack Ramsay: By establishing position, Odom could have had a charge against Paul Pierce. Not coming far enough or early enough, and he picked up the foul.
David Thorpe: Kobe was begging for a hi-lo. LO messed it up.
David Thorpe: Where has that been Pau?
David Thorpe: And can you loan some of it to Odom?
David Thorpe: Thanks Pau.
Mike Moreau: Nobody guarding Rondo - all alone on weakside.
David Thorpe: Love seeing KG ask for the ball.
David Thorpe: If Ariza can get any kind of offensive game going, Phil will have found his answer to PP. He can't shut the Truth down, but he's so much better than Vlad on D.
Henry Abbott: Phil Jackson has already whistled a couple of times when the Celtics had the ball. I have been trying to deduce its meaning, but it's tough.
David Thorpe: Walton has been bad.
Mike Moreau: Perkins just funneled Pao to the baseline and choked off his move. Textbook D -- bad O.
David Thorpe: Classic stuff from KG.
David Thorpe: Lakers starting their offense from better spots.
David Thorpe: Why are the Lakers going over the screen and letting Ray fade to the corner?
Mike Moreau: Scouting Report - You CANNOT let Allen fade off the baseline screen! Same mistake in Game 1.
David Thorpe: The Lakers have face cuts from the weakside open. They need more patience.
Mike Moreau: Gasol got smart and attacked middle on Perkins that time.
Henry Abbott: I doubt Rondo will fall for Derek Fisher's next pump fake. He bit hard on that last one.
David Thorpe: That's 2 bad calls on Kobe.
David Thorpe: Shockingly bad.
Mike Moreau: I remember watching Kenny Smith as an NBA player playing one-on-one with Kenny Anderson when Anderson was in high school. Not the same as Fish--Rondo, but same concept.
Henry Abbott: Kobe Bryant is posting up, as he told Dr. Jack he planned to do, but an awful lot of the time he never gets the ball. Many possessions he doesn't get his hands on it at all.
Mike Moreau: Kobe threw the little frustration elbow - the greats get their shots in with no witnesses or video evidence.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Kobe Bryant has not scored yet from posting up. Many times he doesn't get the ball. Once he was doubled and had to give up the ball. That particular strategy has not worked yet.
Mike Moreau: The fouls off the ball are affecting the outcome. Get your crew together, Bob!
David Thorpe: Odom would be great with KG's heart.
Mike Moreau: Powe affects the game quickly every time he steps on the floor1
Mike Moreau: Bad mistake t
o give Farmar that look at the end of the quarter.
David Thorpe: Celts switched the ballscreen.
Mike Moreau: Powe will own the offensive glass with Luke floating on D.
David Thorpe: Backscreen for Farmar? Odd.
Mike Moreau: Cassell will look for the path of least resistence defensively - likes to go under or switch ballscreen.
David Thorpe: Celts still winning more 50-50 balls.
David Thorpe: I'm still shocked by how bad Walton has played.
Mike Moreau: Score that one for the defense - great hedge to force the travel.
Mike Moreau: Powe is killing Walton
Henry Abbott: Comedy stat note from the first quarter: One player I don't remember making a single good play, Trevor Ariza, had the best plus/minus of everyone, at +4.
David Thorpe: The Celts D is metling the Lakers backups.
David Thorpe: Powe a man against little boys.
David Thorpe: Kobe time.
Mike Moreau: Look at the Laker body language --total bewilderment Looking for their leader.
Henry Abbott: If I'm a Laker fan, I'm noticing that Kobe Bryant is 1-4. Picking up exactly where he left off. He hasn't been really hot in 13 consecutive quarters against the Celtics.
Mike Moreau: Powe wins the first half "Beast" award, Coach Thorpe!
David Thorpe: Bottom line-Celts tougher than the Lakers.
David Thorpe: For now. Lakers can raise their intensity level. But will they?
Dr. Jack Ramsay: The Lakers are playing Trevor Ariza, Luke Walton, Jordan Farmar, Sasha Vujacic, and Ronny Turiaf. They have four turnovers and no points yet in the quarter. Big risk by Phil Jackson. 10-2 run for the Celtics, who are also playing bench players. Now Bryant, Radmanovic, and Odom come back ...
Dr. Jack Ramsay: First score from the post for Kobe Bryant.
Mike Moreau: Posey better front and take his chances on the lob.
Mike Moreau: How about Kobe going sideways after the shot fake rather than going to the rim. Can't get to the foul line going toward the sideline.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Ninth turnover already for the Lakers.
David Thorpe: Powe living in the "crease."
Mike Moreau: Uh oh... look out Boston!
Mike Moreau: Celts need more of that from KG - fewer jumpshots.
David Thorpe: Many of the Lakers have been sleepwalking thus far. Just down 6. Big 6 minutes here.
David Thorpe: Kobe's shot just too flat.
Mike Moreau: Three knockdown rule for Gasol?
Henry Abbott: Paul Pierce driving and dishing to Kendrick Perkins for an "and one." Those are the two guys who were questionable for tonight. Not questionable on this play!
Mike Moreau: No one at the rim for the Lakers to discourage them. LA doesn't even foul hard. Who is the Laker enforcer?
David Thorpe: LO showing up a bit now.
Mike Moreau: How many more Lakers can PP get up in the air with his shot fakes?
David Thorpe: Kobe's footwork and balance inside is not good right now.
Mike Moreau: No chance for Pierce on that switch.
David Thorpe: Lakers again showing signs of a heartbeat.
Henry Abbott: The Lakers feel, to me, like they're playing in goo, a little. Nothing is to easy, crisp, or energetic, Gasol is keeping them in -- he's 5-5 from the field -- but this isn't fun to watch, I'm guessing, if you're a Laker fan.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Gasol no block out on KG's shot. Those are killers.
Mike Moreau: Allen has been open in weakside corner -- normally the spot Rondo sets up. Pierce tried to force him that pass, but right idea.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Kendrick Perkins as three fouls. KG has two. Probably time for P.J. Brown to take a turn guarding Gasol.
Mike Moreau: 50--50 ball Coach Thorpe. Little Rondo rips it away from Gasol.
Mike Moreau: Wow - look at that rotation! PP getting to the shooter!
Henry Abbott: The Celtics have been called for ten fouls so far. The Lakers have been called for 16.
David Thorpe: Another soft call?
Mike Moreau: Best D on Kobe is to keep him on the bench.
Mike Moreau: Best contesting team in the NBA
Mike Moreau: No threes here!
Henry Abbott: Make it 17.
David Thorpe: Lakers outscored by 12 each from both lines. Wow.
Henry Abbott: Free throws are 19-2 in favor of the Celtics.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: The Lakers have been tentative. Where the Celtics have been going to the rim, the Lakers have not, with the exception of Gasol. I thought he was fouled on one of those, but didn't get the call. Kobe has been on the fringes.
Mike Moreau: Keep in mind Quinn Buckner installed the Triangle as coach of the Mavericks. It's not your offense that gets you to the foul line. It's all about aggressiveness.
Mike Moreau: Not a great message to send to give up another offensive board on your first defensive possession.
Henry Abbott: The Celtics are shooting 70% from downtown.
David Thorpe: LA has missed a stunning number of point blank layups.
Jack Ramsay: I don't know why Rajon Rondo just fouled Kobe Bryant like that.
Mike Moreau: This game will change only when the Lakers put somebody on the deck. Then it's Game On!
Mike Moreau: Rondo tries to dunk on people. Lakers fade -- there's your difference.
David Thorpe: Mamba has arrived. Good for Boston. Unless Super mamba shows up.
David Thorpe: There's the hi-low I expected to see.
Henry Abbott: This game just got 50% saltier. Ever since Kobe Bryant for that technical, I'm starting to get the feeling that these two teams are suddenly a little miffed with each other. And for the moment at least, the change in mood has been pretty good for the Lakers.
Mike Moreau: Beast Play by KG!
Dr. Jack Ramsay: If the Lakers could get some stops and rebounds, they'd be back in this game in a heartbeat.
David Thorpe: LA needs to put more effort into locking up the backboards. Boston will miss shots, but those second shots are killers.
Mike Moreau: Lakers are helping off of Rondo. He has to pass that shot up and drive it. Look for Celts to run high pick and pop with KG and Rondo -- keeping him in the middle of the floor to keep the help from overloading one side.
Mike Moreau: Layups beat jumpshots
David Thorpe: LA just settling horribly on offense.They are almost cooked.
Henry Abbott: Wow. Great Odom save off a fallen P.J. Brown. Smart thinking. Just before that, it was the loudest it had been in here all series.
David Thorpe: Walton may get cut this summer.
Mike Moreau: Kobe is crying to the refs while his man is hitting a 3 in the corner
Henry Abbott: Wow. Leon "bad knees" Powe with an alley-oop finish on the break. It's LOUD. Celtics by 20. These are now fans who think they can win a title.
David Thorpe: If Rondo was an unknown player, playing for a summer league team in an NBA summer league, he'd be lightly considered as an NBA prospect. Ditto Powe and Perkins.
David Thorpe: But they represent what I love best about the NBA.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: The Celtics are playing very well. Sharing the ball, moving to the open man. The Lakers have to fight for everything, and never get second chance points. The Lakers appear to have given it up. Now Kobe Bryant is sitting ...
Mike Moreau: You throw the ball at me while I'm on the ground -- I take the charge on you.
David Thorpe: The heck with next year. Walton may get cut tonight.
David Thorpe: Lakers bench getting killed, 21-5.
Mike Moreau: Teams that win NBA titles don't get punked at the rim and dunked on like that -- no matter what the score.
Henry Abbott: A woman named Karen Shepherd wrote a poem from the point of view of a dog. As I recall, the entire poem goes like this: "You gonna eat that? You gonna eat that? You gonna eat that? I'll eat that." You could take out the word "eat" and put in "shoot," and make this a poem about Paul Pierce in this game.
Mike Moreau: Why is Walton still on the floor?
David Thorpe: Powe hooked Walton.
Henry Abbott: Leon Powe has 16 points on FIVE shots.
Henry Abbott: Very heady of Rajon Rondo to get that ball on the rim before the shot clock expired.
Mike Moreau: That's the Rondo--KG pick and pop that keeps that defender from helping off of Rondo. Can't overload the ball side.
David Thorpe: Many of those offensive rebounds are the product of LA just not reacting fast enough.
David Thorpe: And it's killing them.
Henry Abbott: Leon Powe has outscored the entire Laker bench 18-17. Powe is 8-11 from the free throw line, and the Laker bench hasn't attempted one free throw.
David Thorpe: Thorpe out unless this thing gets to 10. LA really playing for some much needed confidence for game 3.
Mike Moreau: Just got a funny text from Coach Mac asking how big the fine will be for Phil Jackson's post game comments!
Henry Abbott: Leon Powe is not saving energy for Game 3.
Henry Abbott: Kobe Bryant, you have 7:22 to close a 23 point gap and achieve a new level of Finals immortality.
Mike Moreau: Think about all of the hard fouls from the Wizards, Cavs and Pistons...
Henry Abbott: Four Celtic coaches went after the referees on that last call. Everyone in the building wanted Leon Powe to get that takeaway.
Mike Moreau: Not over yet...
Dr. Jack Ramsay: 13 points in 3:48 is doable, but I don't think it's going to happen. The Celtics get a good shot just about every possession, and they're shooting 53%.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: 32-8 free throw discrepancy in favor of the Celtics.
Mike Moreau: And none of those fouls that led to the 32 free throws were the hard, message sending kind.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Just nine points.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Six!
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Four!
Dr. Jack Ramsay: In a timeout like this, Doc typically says something like "Now if you want this game, you have to get it. Now let's go! And take care of the ball."
Mike Moreau: Might be some surprised people when they wake up in the morning!
Mike Moreau: High pick and roll - Rondo/KG.
Henry Abbott: A fantastic Kobe Bryant vs. Paul Pierce duel down the stretch has turned into a bunch of free throws.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Here I expect a quick attempt to score. Maybe Kobe drive and lob to Pau.
Dr. Jack Ramsay: Then if you can't get the steal, foul.
Mike Moreau: NBA's best defense - NBA's best offensive player!
David Thorpe: A tight game like this only magnifies the free throw disparity.
Henry Abbott: That's a wrap. Boston exhales. Thanks very much David, Dr. Jack, and Mike. See everyone back here for Game 3.