Tuesday, 16 October, 2018

Boston Celtics: 3 ways team can defeat Philadelphia 76ers

Celtics-76ers: Best Moments From 2002, 2012 Playoff Series (Both Went the Distance) NBA playoffs: Celtics take Game 7, eliminating Bucks
Cassandra Gardner | 02 May, 2018, 01:17

They entered the playoffs wanting the game to grind down.

This series took place a year after Allen Iverson took the 76ers to a surprise NBA Finals appearance.

Aftermath: Boston went on to have an awesome series with the East's other Big 3 (Miami), but lost in seven games and eventually broke up.

Now they'll turn their attention to Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and another youth-led team in the Eastern Conference semifinals against Philadelphia. Boston averaged just half a possession more per game than Miami during the regular season (98.24 possessions per game) and they were not a terribly efficient team in transition (25th in the NBA). The home team won every game in that series. "You grew up watching Celtics-Sixers rivalries, and saw incredible games when I was young". With the injuries at guard, it has been up to Horford to really produce on offense and help with rebounding. Horford leads in rebounds with 8.7 while Rozier tops in assists with 6.7 per game. Horford, who is just coming off a playoff career-high 26-point game, has the capability to limit Saric, but Embiid will inevitably fill the box score. Jaylen Brown is one possibility.

That whole playoff series back in 2012 was a blow-for-blow kind of series between two playoff hopeful teams. The 76ers dominated from opening tip and led by 18 going into the fourth. He averaged 15.8 points and 4.1 assists per game that season. They need to limit their turnovers against a Boston defense that is opportunistic. Given Simmons ability to get in the paint and Embiid's prowess on the boards, Aron Baynes and Greg Monroe ability to challenge at the rim and contain Embiid are critical. With JJ Redick offering the outside shooting touch to compliment Simmons and Embiid dominating inside, there many be no slowing down this squad until they reach the NBA Finals. Not to mention their best defensive player in Marcus Smart missed multiple games due to hand surgery. Rozier notched 29 points on 7-for-9 shooting from deep, while Tatum finished with 28 points.

At the beginning of this season, we all expected the Celtics to be here when they added two all-stars in Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward.

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"Just the notion that it's a long series", Brown said, after practice at the training complex.

But Rozier's massive production, even though it's mainly occurring in the friendly confines of TD Garden, has been a playoff revelation for Boston.

Now, Brad Stevens and company have a date with the Philadelphia 76ers starting Monday night in Boston. Because of that it's hard to see Philadelphia dominating this series easily but with Boston not having Irving where will the scoring come from?

Jaylen Brown, who is listed as doubtful for Game 1 with a hamstring injury, was defended by Ben Simmons for 77 possessions during the regular season.

Embiid, who scored 31 points Monday, was Philadelphia's best player on the floor. When he was on the court against Boston, his team was actually outscored by 3.8 points per 100 possessions.

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