The Finals, Game 4: The C’s bounce back

Celtics 96, Lakers 89

I have to hand it to Doc Rivers. How many coaches would have had the balls to play a lineup that included Nate Robinson, Tony Allen, Rasheed Wallace and Glen Davis deep into the fourth quarter of a tight, must-win game against the Lakers? Ray Allen was the fifth Celtic on the floor, and at times he looked a little like Kelly Leak playing with the Bad News Bears.

That group started the fourth quarter, trailing 62-60, and slowly but surely built an 85-74 lead with 3:57 to play. There were points that Rivers sent Garnett/Pierce/Rondo to the scorer’s table only to pull them back to the bench after the aforementioned fivesome made a nice play to continue its run. This is not something we see often in the NBA because most coaches are afraid of their stars, but these Celtics don’t mind riding the wave with the bench when they are outplaying the other team’s starters. Ubuntu.

When Garnett/Pierce/Rondo did re-enter the game, Mark Jackson was concerned about their readiness to shoot when open, but these guys are pros (not to mention champions), and they answered the call. Well, Paul Pierce (19-6-5) answered the call. He scored five quick points, including a very suspect three-point play where he drew a block on Kobe. It looked as if Kobe got his feet set outside of the circle before Pierce left his feet, but the call went Pierce’s way. That’s why there’s such a thing as home court advantage.

With their backs to the wall, the C’s did what they needed to do in Game 4. Now they have to prevail in another must-win game to put the pressure back on the Lakers as the series heads back to L.A.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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