NBA Roundtable

2012 Playoffs Game Six: Boston vs Atlanta

In 2012 NBA Playoffs, Game Log / Recap on May 10, 2012 at 9:44 pm

Game Six

An elimination game tonight. Boston will desperately want to win this one to avoid a game seven on Atlanta’s homecourt.

First Quarter

  • Atlanta lead 5-3 after three minutes
  • Atlanta moving around a fair bit offensively but not penetrating the defense. Boston easily keeping it’s defense in front of the ball. Atlanta moving the ball but not creating anything.
  • Oh nice job by Rondo to find Bradley with the bounce pass off the broken transition play for a reverse layup but Bradley blows the easy hoop. His shoulder perhaps bothering him on that attempt. Wasn’t even close. Looked like the backboard blocked him.
  • Brandon Bass has knocked down a pair of long range two point jump shots. Good sign for Boston. He has struggled in this series. Struggled with his shot, struggled with defensive rotations and struggled on the backboards.
  • Atlanta lead 12-11 after the midway point in the quarter. Josh Smith just made a pair of baskets. A long jumper and an offensive rebound / tap in to give them that one point lead.
  • Boston got a nice short jumper from Bradley a minute or so ago as he curled around a screen into the paint, took the J from 12 feet and went off glass head on. Ray Allen has since checked in for Bradley though who hasn’t looked himself since Game One.
  • Joe Johnson clearout on Ray Allen, blows by him left (left wing), drive and kick to Marvin, three pointer on the way from right sideline, nails it. His second triple from that area tonight. Ray Allen needs to do a better job denying dribble penetration.
  • Ray Allen with a beautiful behind the back dribble in transition to elude his defender at mid-court but then he decides to attack the rim in transition and loses the ball. Turnover. An all too regular sight for Boston fans; Ray Allen losing the ball in transition.
  • Ray Allen misses a three, offensive rebound, ball passed around, out to Pierce, three pointer from the top of the key, hits it! That cuts the Hawks lead back down to 1 after falling down six after that Marvin three.
  • The score is 19-18 Atlanta at the two minute mark in the first. Stiemsma just rejected Teague’s driving shot out of bounds. Looks like he is moving better tonight than in Game Five, Stiemsma that it is.
  • Terrific finish by Tracy McGrady into the body of Garnett at the rim, takes the contact, floats in the air long enough to muscle up the finish. Tough play. Very nice pass by Horford to find McGrady cutting to the rim. Horford making a lovely block on Stiemsma at the rim. Playing well to begin tonight’s game.
  • Haha, a woeful final possession from Atlanta who fail to realize there was 8 seconds on the clock … most of their team didn’t even make it upcourt thinking there was no chance to score but a bad pass in transition (from McGrady to stone hands Dampier) ends up in Hinrich’s hands for a 20 footer right wing at the buzzer, makes it.

Second Quarter

  • Good game so far. Both teams look dangerous. Not an even performance from either side though. First team to put together a prolonged stretch of strong play, wins?? Maybe.
  • Atlanta lead 23-20
  • Tracy McGrady with the fadeaway jumper from 13 feet on the left side of the paint over Pietrus, hits it. Impressive make.
  • Marvin Williams knocks down his third three. This time from the left wing. Atlanta leads 28-20, their largest lead of the night. A 9-0 run for Atlanta.
  • Garnett goes right past Dampier (easily) in the face up and dribble drive middle, spins back, contract, finishes and gets the foul. Three point play. Next possession, Pietrus with the offensive rebound and putback, gets the crowd on their feet. Marvin Williams failed to box him out. Next possession, Garnett in the post again, spins away from the double, jumps up and uses that length to extend over Josh Smith and uses the glass to finish out of the left post. Nice play.
  • Atlanta leads 31-27 at the seven minute mark. Pierce just made a strange three point play, fouled on the way up on the dunk attempt, loses the ball up in the air but it floats onto the rim and gets the friendly bounce. Hits his FT. One point game. A transition layup from Rondo puts Boston back up on top and the crowd is going wild. Turnover, Rondo strips Josh Smith’s drive, fastbreak, nothing on, Rondo waiting patiently, Garnett trails, cuts down the middle, Rondo finds him, layup. Timeout Atlanta. 9-0 run Celtics.
  • Rondo is on Marvin Williams. Gotta attack that matchup. Put Marvin in the post, he has a strong post game against undersized guys.
  • Avery Bradley hits a long jumper in transition from the left wing. Next possession, fastbreak again for Celtics, Rondo probing, pulling his defender out of the way and gives it to a trailing Pierce for the drive and layup.
  • The Celtics have all the momentum right now and they are getting easy scoring opportunities in transition here. Atlanta needs to take better care of the ball and avoid these scenarios. Tighten their ship or they’ll be heading home for the rest of the summer tonight.
  • Garnett with a tremendous block on Teague’s running layup, swatted out of mid-air, fastbreak Rondo, Rondo attacks Smith, stops and pump fakes, Smith goes for it, Rondo gets the easy layup.
  • Josh Smith with a nice cut to the rim for a basket inside. Ends the Celtics unanswered run. I think that was a 14-0 run in the end.
  • Final three minutes. Boston lead 43-33 after another Rondo layup in transition.
  • Josh Smith with an ugly fadeaway jump off the dribble heavily contested by Bass from about 18 feet on the right wing. It goes on. Low percentage attempt.
  • Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo have been thoroughly dominant in the period. Garnett started off in the post and then made several big defensive plays and Rondo with his pushing the ball in transition, finding teammates for easy hoops and getting to the rim himself. Lots of big plays from these two in the quarter. Garnett drills a fadeaway J out of the post.
  • Boston 10-4 advantage on the boards in the 2nd quarter. Unusual for them. Atlanta has to win the battle for extra possessions to have a chance to win this game. Need to step up.
  • Boston lead 45-37 in the final 90 seconds.
  • Joe Johnson turns it, one of several turnovers for the Hawks tonight. 10 turnovers for Atlanta. 8 of them have been Boston steals. Giving up easy transition points due to their lack of care with the basketball offensively.
  • Make that 47-41 Boston lead — not so bad for Atlanta considering how poorly they played in the second period over the final 8 minutes.

Third Quarter

  • Garnett left open from 16 above right elbow, hits it.
  • Joe Johnson answers with a catch and shoot from the left wing, 21 footer, after running off a screen.
  • Nice pass by Garnett (right post) to Bradley for the layup off the baseline cut
  • Joe Johnson with the lay in after Marvin Williams tapped the rebound away from Garnett to his teammate who was in front of the rim.
  • Garnett with another rejection (goal tend?) as he denies Smith at the basket
  • Teague air-balls the quick three with 18+ seconds left on the shot clock. Makes the long jumper on a subsequent possession though. No hesitation in taking that shot. Good confidence/toughness.
  • Fastbreak, Teague drive and kick to Marvin Williams for a left wing three, nails it. Timeout Boston.
  • Boston leads 53-51 at the seven minute mark
  • Garnett shoots over the top of Josh Smith so so easily, makes a short 10 foot turnaround jumper there. Right post turning towards middle on side of paint.
  • Boston with multiple offensive rebounds. Atlanta can’t be letting Boston have those extra opportunities. Eventually leads to KG shooting and making two free throws.
  • Nice pass out of the post on the strong side to the baseline cutting Marvin Williams for the layup.
  • Haha, Brandon Bass with the shot-block to deny Teague’s transition layup. Don’t see many blocked shots from Bass. Nevermind in transition. Nice block by Bass.
  • Josh Smith has a catch and shoot 17 footer right wing rim in and out. Nice pass from Joe Johnson as Boston cheat off of Smith to deny him the shooting opportunity.
  • Boston lead 60-55 after Rondo bags a jumper from the top of the key
  • Pierce left wing, pump fakes the three, dribbles inside, draws the defender, shuffle pass to Ryan Hollins for the two handed dunk. Smart play from Pierce.
  • Ray Allen knocks down a left corner three to put Boston up 8 with two minutes left in the period
  • Hollins very aggressive helping off of Dampier. Not paying him any attention unless he is within striking distance of the rim. Making it impossible for Atlanta to post anyone down low while keeping Dampier in the high post.
  • Joe Johnson bags a pair of three pointers. Two point game.
  • Rajon Rondo holding it for the final possession, PnP with Garnett, nothing on, takes the dribble in jumper, offensive rebound Hollins, back out to Rondo, he looks, nothing on, takes the tough 23 footer off the dribble with a hand in his face from the top of the key and nails the jumper at the end of quarter buzzer.

Fourth Quarter

  • Boston lead 67-63
  • Garnett drops another fallaway jumper over Josh Smith. Boston lead 74-65 with 8:30 to play. Garnett has 26 points for the game. One of those rolling back the years nights from Garnett.
  • Josh Smith misses a 20 footer right baseline. Too many long jump shots from Atlanta. Not enough action going to the rim.
  • McGrady forced into a fadeaway 21 footer from the right sideline, misses badly. Tough shot. Bad possession. Boston unable to score (Ray Allen missing threes) on possessions either side of this one.
  • Six minute mark in fourth quarter, score is the same, 74-65 Atlanta.
  • Turnover Pierce, Teague playing the passing lanes, breakaway, slam dunk.
  • Rondo misses a forced runner in the lane, Atlanta run out again, Josh Smith going coast-to-coast and drawing a foul. He will head to the foul line for two. Makes two. Cuts the lead to five.
  • Pierces misses a tough contested long two. Good defense by Atlanta. And a very nice drive and sweeping hook shot by Horford in the lane to cut the lead to 3 with 5 minutes left.
  • Bass knocks down a pull up jumper/leaner over Teague from 14 feet. Nice PnP action there with Rondo and good patience by Bass to get closer to the rim and to take the shot over the much smaller Teague knowing he had no chance of blocking that.
  • Boston lead 76-73 with four minutes to play with Garnett set to return for Hollins … Hollins misses the easy shot inside, fastbreak the other way, Smith to Horford, alley oop from behind the there point line, slam dunk! One point game. Timeout Boston.
  • Rondo PnR with Garnett left wing, Rondo jumper from 18 feet, misses.
  • 3:20 – Josh Smith blows by Bass who was caught napping defending Smith at the three point line, slam dunk! Atlanta lead.
  • 3 min – Rondo driving in the lane, kicks it to KG, 19 footer right elbow extended, misses hard off the side of the rim.
  • JJ left wing PnP with Horford who pops out to the top of the key, passes up the jumper, drives to the rim and hits the running layup. Atlanta up three.
  • Paul Pierce left baseline drive, head fake, loses the shot-blocker Smith, layup. Great take by Pierce. Getting his team an easy shot after a couple of bad possessions there with Rondo looking to create.
  • Garnett forcing a tough driving shot from Smith going across the lane, miss, rebound KG.
  • 1:40 – Pierce and KG pick and roll, KG to right elbow, Pierce finds him, touch pass to Rondo inside, shot fake, no wait, travel, turnover.
  • 1:24 – Atlanta lead 79-78 – Joe Johnson misses a 20 footer from the top of the key with Hollins doing a good job defending him and making shoot over his out-stretched arm.
  • 55 seconds – Garnett backs down Smith inside, turns baseline, short fadeaway, misses, offensive rebound Hollins, putback, nope, fouled before the putback. Great effort by Hollins to get that rebound. Giving the Celtics very good effort and energy tonight. Lots of quality defensive contributions. Sideline inbounds, ball swung to Ray Allen in right corner to KG on right post, shot clock ticking down, immediately turns middle and takes the turnaround J, hits it!
  • The score is 80-79 Boston
  • 30 seconds – Atlanta slow to get into their offense, over to Smith, right wing, Smith settles for a contested fading 22 footer on the right wing, misses. Atlanta fouls. 9 seconds left. Awful shot by Smith. Ray Allen splits the FTs which gives Atlanta a slight chance here. Timeout Hawks.
  • 9 seconds – sideline inbounds, left wing, JJ to Smith back to JJ who crosses over Pierce and takes him right to the rim, gets to the basket, Pierce blocks Johnson, out of bounds.
  • 3.1 seconds – baseline inbounds, no timeout left for Atlanta, Boston foul prior to the inbounds pass. That should be two shots. Marquis Daniel getting called for a holding foul away from the action. Referees talking to one another. What will the call be? Referees decide that the ball was passed but not caught prior to the foul and do not give it to Atlanta. Sideline inbounds instead. Easier pass by Atlanta should feel hard done by. Smith inbounds it to Horford who had spun away from Daniels who was fronting the post, spun to the rim, Smith lob pass, fouled at the rim, Horford will shoot two FTs. He has 14 points on 6-9 FGAs and 2-2 FTAs. He misses the first. Ugh. Horford needs to miss the second to give Atlanta a chance at the offensive rebound. Makes the second. Dumb play. Atlanta have no timeouts left to advance the ball. Boston inbounds it to Pierce who is fouled and will shoot two.
  • 1.3 seconds – Pierce makes the first. Two point game (82-80 Boston). Makes the second. Inbounds to Teague deep in the backcourt and he can’t get off a shot. Game over. Boston win the series!

Atlanta gave the Celtics far too many openings in this game and this series as a whole. Shot themselves in the foot time and time again with turnovers and bad shot selection. They deserved to lose.

Not the most assured performance from Boston over the course of the series but Atlanta seem to cause them a lot of problems over the years so I am reluctant to read too much into it.

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