Boston Celtics v Miami Heat - Game One

Rajon Rondo says Heat “have to hit the deck, too”


If you are going to beat the Heat, you have to turn them into jump shooters. If Dwyane Wade and LeBron James are getting dunks and layups you are in trouble. Even Ronny Turiaf makes his dunks. You have to push them out away from the hoop.

Boston didn’t do that in Game 1, Miami got in the lane and did what they wanted. The Heat had 42 points in the paint. Wade showed off his floater, LeBron worked from the post, the pair drove all the way to the rim off the bounce, cutters were diving down the lane all game.

Doc Rivers said after the game that LeBron and Wade got to play in “extreme comfort” and that has to change. Rajon Rondo has an idea how. Via the Sun Sentinel.

“Nothing dirty,” Rondo said… “but they have to hit the deck, too.”

He was not the only guy talking about bringing a little of the Pacers series back to the Heat.

It’s a good theory, but….

First, Wade and particularly LeBron take the contact and still score as well as any players in the league. You don’t want to give them a lot of and-1 opportunities. Then there is the fact you’re risking foul trouble for key guys.

I think we’ll see a closer game, I think we’ll see more Greg Stiemsma, I think we’ll see the Celtics hold and grab and do everything they can to disrupt the Heat on offense. The Celtics will even got to some zone, which they surprisingly rolled out in the fourth quarter. They will again try to grind the game down to a halt.

But I’m still not sold that will be enough.

Pelicans signing center Jerome Jordan

Marc Gasol, Jerome Jordan
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Through the first two weeks of training camp, the Pelicans have seen their frontcourt depth decimated by injuries to Alexis Ajinca and Omer Asik, both of whom are out for a few weeks. A deal with Greg Smith fell through after he failed a physical. Now, Yahoo’s Marc Spears reports that they’re signing former Knicks and Nets center Jerome Jordan as a short-term solution:

Jordan has only played 65 games in his career and hasn’t been spectacular, but the Pelicans need a body while their two centers are out. Anthony Davis will spend some time at center, but considering the contracts Asik and Ajinca got this summer, Alvin Gentry clearly plans on playing him at power forward as well, and they need a center to at least fill time before Asik and Ajinca get back.

Kevin Love unsure about opening-night return

Kevin Love
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He’s back in practice with the Cavaliers, but there’s still no clarity on whether Kevin Love will be available for the season opener. Love had shoulder surgery in April after suffering a torn labrum in Game 4 of the Cavs’ first-round series against the Celtics, and doctors initially gave him a timetable of four to six months for a return. The six-month end of that is right around opening night (October 27), but Love still doesn’t know whether he’ll be able to play against the Bulls—although he is hopeful.

Via the Sporting News‘ Sean Deveney:

“I feel pretty good,” Love told Sporting News. “As far as the opener goes, I am not completely sure. I’ll probably get with the doctors and see what they have to say. I know that my six-month post-op is coming up here pretty fast. As far as getting the strength back, getting the range of motion, I feel pretty good, so I am looking forward to getting into some more contact, getting into a rhythm and getting out there as quickly as I can.”

Love has been cleared for 3-on-3 practices, but not yet for 5-on-5. If it were up to him, he’d be back on the court, but he understands he needs to follow the rehab protocol for his injury.

“(Six months is) just a ballpark figure that has generally been thrown out there by anybody who has talked about the rehab process for this kind of an injury,” Love said. “I like to think that I am ahead of the game, but there’s different tests and the due diligence that the doctor will go through and the training staff will go through. So all I can do is go out there every day and attack my rehab and hopefully I will be able to go out there and help these guys as soon as possible.”

At the very least, the Cavs will be without Kyrie Irving (still recovering from knee surgery) and Iman Shumpert (out up to three months with a wrist injury), and probably Tristan Thompson too, unless his contract situation changes unexpectedly. So having Love available would be some much-needed good news. But it’s more important that Love (and everyone else) is healthy for the playoffs. If he’s not ready to play, there’s no need to rush back for an October game.