NEED ANOTHER WIN: Atlanta Hawks @ Boston Celtics preview

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Well, keeping the last post short and sweet seemed to work. Livingston and Ellington were killing us all night long, but we managed to claw our way to a victory. Keep it up!

Stat check: The Hawks have won 6 of their last 10 games, and are currently on a 1-game win streak as well. Road record is currently 18-19. Hawks (6) are currently 2.5 games ahead of the Celtics (7) in standings.

Game time: 30 March 2013, 1030hrs AEDT

Watch it on: NBA League Pass

Roster changes:

  1. Rajon Rondo (ACL) and Jared Sullinger (back) are out for the season
  2. Courtney Lee (ankle) may play tomorrow
  3. Kevin Garnett (inflammed ankle) will be out for 2 weeks
  4. Lou Williams (right knee surgery) is out for the season
  5. Zaza Pachulia (sore right Achilles) is out indefinitely
  6. Devin Harris (sore left foot) is questionable for tomorrow

Top enemy performers:

  1. Scoring: Al Horford (17.6)
  2. Rebounds:  Al Horford (10.3)
  3. Assists:  Jeff Teague (7.1)

Keys to the game:

  1. Contain Jeff Teague and Al Horford. The eternal kryptonite for the Celtics will be fast, attacking point guards and weak interior defense. It’s no wonder the two mentioned players always excel against the Celtics. In the past 3 meetings this season, Teague has averaged 22 points on 55.6% shooting while Horford has 17.3 points and 11.6 rebounds. Bradley will take care of Teague, so the bigger problem is whether our guys can out hustle Horford in the paint. Given how depleted the roster is at the moment, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the Hawks will try to go to Horford often for an easy bucket.
  2. Closing off downtown. Kyle Korver, Kyle Korver, and Kyle Korver. I haven’t forgotten the January game where the Celtics decided not to guard him and he hit 8 shots from 3-point land. Lou Williams and Devin Harris is out, which leaves Josh Smith as the only legitimate threat from outside. I’m not going to comment, because Smith always ends up with double digits scoring despite his erratic performance.
  3. Keeping the Green alive. Jeff Green will continue to start for KG. We all know how Green performs as a starter, so fingers crossed! All our guys are slowly but steadily improving, so this is a good sign. It’s always exciting to wonder about who will come out strong in the next game. Crawford going into berserker mode? Wilcox ballin’ like it’s 2006? Bass having another insane game? Or will it be Randolph posting his first double-double?

I expect them to win this game, just because it’s Easter weekend and we deserve a win to top it off. To all you Celtics fans down under…Happy Easter, bleed green, party hard, and stay safe this weekend!

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