Boston Celtics

Around the Rim: From worst to first

1. How ya like us now?
They did it again. The Cs are now 6-0, the lone unbeaten, after putting a hurtin’ on the Pacers, 101-86. Just so you know, they didn’t have six wins last season until there were already 13 ticks in the loss column. For a little while, it looked like this could actually be a game, but things fell apart for Indiana when Paul Pierce transformed into the Truth, scoring 31 points in the game with 13 coming a second-quarter, three-minute explosion. And yes, at one point, you did see Pierce doing push-ups in-between free throws. Apparently, the men in green are so bored with their competition that they’re working in a lil’ extra cardio training during the actual game. Frankly, we can’t blame `em. The big three are just toying with teams now, they combined for 66 points and 25 boards against the Pacers.

2. Two outta three ain’t bad

There is no NBA state feared more than Texas. All three of the Lone Star teams were in action on Tuesday and the Spurs and Mavericks both escaped their opponents, the Lakers and Sixers respectively, but the Rockets weren’t so lucky. They got downed by the lowly Grizz 105-99. It’s a shame too because Tracy McGrady had a terrific game for Houston. T-Mac was 16-of-28 and finished the contest with 41 points, four rebounds, four assists and a pair of pokes. But to the Rockets defense, they weren’t using their home state advantage last night as the game was held in Memphis. The trio of teams is a combined 11-0 at home on the year, but something is going to have to give here soon. On Thursday, the Spurs heads to Dallas; on Friday, Houston plays in San Antonio and next Wednesday, the Mavericks will be wearing their road unis against the Rockets.

3. He’s got that Magic touch
Rashard Lewis has to be loving life after putting up a game-high 22 points on his old club. Oh, and the fact that the Sonics fell to 0-8 while he’s raking in $14.9 million this year in sunny Florida probably didn’t hurt any either. Lewis led the way offensively during the 103-76 beatdown, but, as usual, it was the man-child who did all the dirty work. Dwight Howard finished with 13 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks in the game. If this guy isn’t the closest thing to Tim Duncan since Tim Duncan then we don’t know who is. Of course, we can’t mention the Sonics without mentioning Kevin Durant. It was another tough night for the rookie as he went 4-of-13 for 10 points to go along with a single rebound and zero assists. Rashard Lewis has to be loving life.

Tuesday’s Player of the Day: Dirk Nowitzki vs. Philadelphia 37 min, 21 pts (FG: 7-14, 3FG: 1-3, FT: 6-9), 12 reb, 8 ast, 2 stl, 3 blk

Wednesday’s Game to Watch: Orlando (6-2) @ Cleveland (4-4)
Cleveland’s been on the road for a majority of the season so far, but that doesn’t mean they’re going to be welcomed home. The Magic are undefeated on the road (4-0) and they’ve ripped off a streak of four wins in their last five games to rise to the top of the Southeast standings. The trio of Rashard Lewis, Dwight Howard and Jameer Nelson is clicking on all cylinders as Orlando enjoys the early season ride. Cleveland, on the other hand, has no such trio to speak of and they’ve given up 35 more points than they’ve scored. However, the end result is they are only 1 ½ games behind Detroit in their division. Not too bad for a team that is riding one horse; it’s not too good, but it’s not too bad either.

Buzzer Beater: So, how bad are things for the 1-6 Miami Heat? Well, according to Pat Riley, they’re PRETTY BAD, pretty bad.

Me? Play. I guarantee you I should suit up. I’d play better than some of them right now,” Riley said Tuesday night. “I guarantee it. I swear to God. With an old hip and 62 years old and I can’t see, I’ll play better than some of my guys tonight. Come on, they were pretty bad.

C’mon coach, aren’t you being a little hard on your guys? Oh, wait; they lost by 15 to the Bobcats? Are you serious?! Okay, you’re right; lace `em up.

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