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GAME 7, ECSF: Boston Celtics @ Toronto Raptors - Friday September 11th, 9pm ET - TSN/TNT

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  • DanH
    replied
    Hey, great season all. Disappointing end but they fought, gotta be proud of the team. We should see most of them back next year, though there are definitely some interesting choices to make in FA.

    Three big runs by the Celtics killed us in this one. Two with Gasol, who still couldn’t buy a three but otherwise was putting up boxscore numbers. But as ever, the boxscore is basically irrelevant with him, the whole point of him is to grease the offence and anchor the defence, and the offence in particular just died in those Boston runs. Pascal being a big negative offensively just kills what they can do, and with Lowry looking exhausted most of the game, they just didn’t have the options. Having to rely on Norm when we go small is tough - his scoring can be a lifesaver but you also get the decision making we saw late in that one. Double edged sword. Ibaka was very good in this one, especially in those minutes against lineups without all of the Celts’ big guns (kind of had to go small late, neither C could hang with that group). Nurse had some questionable decision making (no big lineup to get that late defensive board? Not going back to Thomas after a good first stint? Play calling in general...), but he was a little limited by Gasol having zero offensive impact, Serge being targeted just as much defensively by Kemba, Lowry being exhausted, Siakam just not being himself, that it’s hard to be too upset.

    Just a really rough series for a bunch of guys, but the whole team fought through it to force game 7 and almost took it, in spite of generally awful shooting for most of the series. Standing ovation for this team. Hope we do see most of them back for next year, I could do another season like that, with our core guys one year better.

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  • inthepaint
    replied
    They deserved to lose this game, but we had the chance to steal it (it came dow to just 5 pts), which is why is such a tough loss. There are lessons to be learned though.

    Gasol finished this one with a team low (by a wide margin) -19 (on a 5pt loss), shot 28% from the field. In about the same number of minutes, Serge had 14pts and 8 rebounds, and was a +6.

    Throughout this whole series, our problem was offence (much more so than defence). No player is perfect, but instead of balancing that out, we deliberately chose to ride with Gasol, a player with zero offence, allowing the Boston centres to be free to ignore him and go help/double Siakam & FVV (precisely when these players were struggling and could have used more space to spark the offence).

    1-dimensional players (without offence or defence) have no place in NBA playoffs, let alone in game 7's. There's just no margin of error for that. This is why guys like that typically don't play in 4th quarters/crunch time. You need fast, athletic 2-way players that can be impactful on BOTH ends of the floor. You simply can't afford to hide people on offence or defence after the first round. Opponents will find that, and exploit it. When Gasol was on the floor, Celtics could take a breather on defence, and have the energy and manpower to hammer down Lowry, Siakam and Fred.

    Guys like Norm, Serge and Thomas are not perfect, but they were putting the ball in the damn basket, which demanded the Celtics attention. All series long. Gravity and space on offence generated by guys that actually look for the basket is CRUCIAL. It provides a pressure release that facilitates the game for your teammates. This is part of the reason why a guy like Thomas, without any flashy plays, can end with a team high +6. He sucks the energy out the opposing defence rather than give them a break, because he's constantly hunting his shot (which is Gasol's polar opposite)

    Norm & Thomas move a ton without the ball (especially Thomas). That creates a natural flow and movement on the overall offence. They're hunting their shots, so the defence has to contort itself to chase them, which opens up gaps for other guys. With them on them on the floor the offence moves and flows, because they're moving with it. In contrast, with Gasol on the floor, he's parked in the high post, in no position to rebound, just setting screens and doing dribble-hand offs that lead to nowhere (because the defence knows they just need to focus on the ball handler, not him)

    We realized late on this series that our small lineup was finding success. That's the lineup we chose to close games with because it provided the best offence/defence mix for us. Instead of using that lineup more throughout the game to maybe build a cushion, we stubbornly wasted a lot of time with Gasol. Boston had a couple of runs with him on the floor, and our guys couldn't recover.

    We were stubborn and we paid the price. Hopefully we learned some lessons for next year:

    1. Stick with 2-way players that can give you on BOTH ends of the floor (should've learned that already with Derozan, another 1-dimensional player)
    2. Play these players more often, not just in crunch time
    3. If a player doesn't have it one night, it's ok to give them some leash to play through their funk, but draw a line. You don't want to be reactionary, but you can't be stubborn either. If they don't have it, shrink their minutes and give it to the ones that are earning it. Base your decisions on the reality of the series and the opponent you're playing right now, as opposed to solely on regular season stats and old playoffs.
    4. Try to have a relatively similar size leash with your guys and avoid playing favourites. That's the best way to create a healthy and fair internal competition that will ultimately give you the best product on the floor.
    Last edited by inthepaint; Sat Sep 12, 2020, 11:21 AM.

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  • planetmars
    replied
    Nurse rode the guys that got them there last year. It was a mistake in the end and hopefully he looks back and realizes his blunder.

    The most likely scenario is we have a very similar team next year. I think Serge is the big wild card because he's probably going to want a long term deal. But everyone else is probably back. Maybe we look past Gasol or he retires.

    Ultimately though it's really possible that we get back to this place. Second seed in the East. Chance to play for a chip. As long as we have Lowry on the team anything is really possible.

    But with the Giannis sweepstakes hanging over Masai's head things could take a u-turn. Maybe he wants to shed as many contracts as he can now so he has that flexibility in 2021? But that's a rebuild move, not a retool move.

    Anyway, all I can say is that I am proud of this team. They competed hard and it was one of the best seasons we ever had even though we lost to the bloody Celtics. The heart breaking thing is we could have advanced. So many dumb mistakes but what are you going to do. We could have lost in that OT to the Bucks in game 3 last season and not have a chip. Sometimes the chips fall properly and sometimes they don't.


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  • Jclaw
    replied
    Lots of stuff to criticize but you've got to love this team. Down 10 with less than 5 minutes to go and they have not one but two chances with the ball in their possession to tie of take the lead in the final minutes. They went down fighting. That's how I'll remember them

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  • Scraptor
    replied
    RandomGuy wrote: View Post
    Love Nick Nurse as a coach and a person but he lost us the last game pretty much, crucial mistakes by him:

    Playing Marc instead of Serge, just give his minutes to a person who has it going all series... He was literally the only confident offensive player when he was on the court (excluding Powell)
    Not benching Siakam when he was killing momentum with his brainless fouls and turnovers. He's not Lebron, don't be afraid to bench him!
    Not playing our bench more (Matt Thomas looked nothing but productive on both ends out there).
    Not taking a timeout to draw an actual play with a moving ball... for our last chance to tie the game. Why? This one's really bizarre for me.

    All of these factors would have probably resulted in a W for us and all of them were under the coach's control so that's why I'm putting the L on him this time.
    Nick coached scared imo. I don't remember seeing him looking this panicked last playoffs. Being so rigid with his lineups was like he was coaching not to lose rather than coaching to win.

    I wonder if last year he was loose because he had no expectations, and now with the title and COY he was feeling the pressure. (On a side note, I think Pascal was probably experiencing the same sort of pressure.)

    Gasol was so bad this series I think we could have definitely won had we gone away from him. Vogel has benched Mcgee and Howard for three straight games and the Lakers are thriving.

    Just a shame. But as Jay Triano once said on national tv, "What the fuck are you gonna do?"

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  • KeonClark
    replied
    saints91 wrote: View Post
    Matt Thomas did what he was supposed to do, play composed basketball and played to his speed. He’s not much more than a 9th -10th guy but he showed he can play good enough D to stay on the floor and not make mistakes
    He should have been a release valve option for Fred last night instead of the old "I need a hero" heave

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  • saints91
    replied
    Matt Thomas did what he was supposed to do, play composed basketball and played to his speed. He’s not much more than a 9th -10th guy but he showed he can play good enough D to stay on the floor and not make mistakes

    Leave a comment:


  • KeonClark
    replied
    Rudy Bargnani wrote: View Post
    This sucks. Proud of the team, was a great season but sucks to go down like that.

    Looking back at the boxscore...Serge only played 20 minutes last night. Had the highest OFFRTG on the team, best plus/minus, shot 15-31 from 3 against Boston in the series, and only played 20 minutes. Damn.

    Edit--Matt Thomas had great advanced stats this series. Again best net rating on the team yesterday.
    Thomas and Serge both should have played more. Nick went down with the ship last night

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  • Rudy Bargnani
    replied
    This sucks. Proud of the team, was a great season but sucks to go down like that.

    Looking back at the boxscore...Serge only played 20 minutes last night. Had the highest OFFRTG on the team, best plus/minus, shot 15-31 from 3 against Boston in the series, and only played 20 minutes. Damn.

    Edit--Matt Thomas had great advanced stats this series. Again best net rating on the team yesterday.
    Last edited by Rudy Bargnani; Sat Sep 12, 2020, 09:51 AM.

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  • saints91
    replied
    I agree, Nick has to learn to trust his bench. They couldn’t have possibly made more mistakes than the starters. Those guys would’ve played better with less mileage on them

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  • RandomGuy
    replied
    Love Nick Nurse as a coach and a person but he lost us the last game pretty much, crucial mistakes by him:

    Playing Marc instead of Serge, just give his minutes to a person who has it going all series... He was literally the only confident offensive player when he was on the court (excluding Powell)
    Not benching Siakam when he was killing momentum with his brainless fouls and turnovers. He's not Lebron, don't be afraid to bench him!
    Not playing our bench more (Matt Thomas looked nothing but productive on both ends out there).
    Not taking a timeout to draw an actual play with a moving ball... for our last chance to tie the game. Why? This one's really bizarre for me.

    All of these factors would have probably resulted in a W for us and all of them were under the coach's control so that's why I'm putting the L on him this time.

    Leave a comment:


  • S.R.
    replied
    consmap wrote: View Post
    This is how I'm dealing with the loss

    If he had the legs to give us these games back to back he'd be a tier 1 superstar. Ah well, Lowry owes us nothing and has given everything he's got to give.

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  • consmap
    replied
    This is how I'm dealing with the loss

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  • Sonny
    replied
    The Great One wrote: View Post
    I also don't want to see any Lowry or DeRozan comparison. Those two struggled in the playoffs in the past but nothing like this. Did Siakam touched that Monstars basketball from Space Jam? is that the reason why he all of a sudden lost all of his skills?
    With Lowry and DeRozan it was about shot making and shot selection and the fact that they kept shooting even when their shots weren't falling. With Siakam it's just different. He looked scared and I felt like he didn't have any confidence in his game. He was a completwly different player from the one that we saw in the regular season. It's weird.

    Leave a comment:


  • bertarapsfan
    replied
    Feels weird to lose a hard fought series. We have either won it all or flamed out and got swept in embarrassing fashion.
    celtics were always the more talented team but I thought we might be the better "team".
    I remember someone made a thread about what would be a successful season and I said ECF or a tough 7 game series loss to the celtics.
    All in all have to be satisfied and proud of the guys they defend the crown admirably despite being over matched and out gunned by most other top teams

    Leave a comment:

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