The Celtics took a 2-0 series lead on the Cleveland Cavaliers with a 89-73 win at the Garden last night.
Marc J. Spears has the Celtics putting the squeeze on LeBron James and the Cavs once again. Mark Murphy hopes that Celtics fans don’t get carried away by their team’s containment of LeBron in the first two games of the series. Kevin McNamara has the comforts of home once again leading the way to victory for Boston. Scott Souza has the Celtics overcoming a slow first quarter before charging back and coasting past the Cavs. Bill Doyle notes that by the end of the night Ben Wallace probably wasn’t the only Cav feeling dizzy. Mike Fine has the Celtics halfway to a series win. Jeff Howe has the Celtics bench helping them pull away from the Cavs.
Kevin Henkin on the BSMW Full Court Press has the Celtics gang defense once again smothering LeBron and the Cavs.
Dan Shaughnessy falls just short of calling LeBron James a playoff choker, comparing him to Ted Williams in the 1946 World Series and A-Rod in any postseason. Does Dan realize how foolish that is? Did he watch any of the playoffs last season? Of course he didn’t…OK, so the last line of Tony Massarotti‘s column today was pretty clever, I’ll give him that. “Can all the King’s horses and all the King’s men put LeBron together again?” Jim Donaldson has LeBron appearing lost out on the court as the Celtics defense stifled him once again. Jeff Jacobs also chimes in on LeBron and the frustrating two nights he and his teammates have had in Boston. Jennifer Toland looks at another rough shooting night for James.
Bob Ryan looks at the contributions of the first four men off the Celtics bench – a group that turned the game around last night for Boston. Steve Bulpett says that the Celtics need to find a way to bottle their home brew intensity and take it on the road for games three and four. Lenny Megliola also looks at the challenge facing the Celtics now that they’ll be heading back out on the road for the next two games. Julian Benbow examines how the Celtics defense is frustrating LeBron. Robert Lee has more on the Celtics bench players stepping up big last night. Massarotti has Danny Ainge speaking on in defense of Doc Rivers and the playoff performance of his team, both at home and on the road.
Christopher L. Gasper has Ray Allen finally breaking out and exploding in the second half, scoring all 16 of his points in the third and fourth quarter. Jeff Horrigan has Allen and the basketball settling their differences and getting along nicely in the second half last night. Tim Weisberg also looks at Allen finding his way in the second half, and along with him, the rest of the Celtics as well. Bulpett has Kevin Garnett honored with a place on the All-NBA first team.
Michael Vega has the Cavs hoping to get back on track back in the comforts of home. Horrigan has former Celtics short-timer and current Cavs reserve Damon Jones speaking about the rise of the Celtics.
Spears’ notebook has more on Garnett being named to the first team All-NBA. Pierce is on the third team. Murphy’s notebook has Sam Cassell stepping up at point after Rajon Rondo struggled to begin the game. McNamara’s notebook has more on Ray Allen getting back on track in the second half last night. Doyle’s notebook has more on the first team honors for Garnett. Vega’s notebook has Cavs coach Mike Brown endorsing Rick Carlisle for the Dallas job.
Gordon Edes has Kevin Youkilis once again leading the Red Sox offense in a victory over the Tigers. Rob Bradford has Josh Beckett hitting his stride in last night’s win. Steven Krasner has a locked-in Youkilis leading the Sox once again. Jeff Goldberg and Bill Ballou have more on Youkilis and Beckett leading the way for the Sox.
Steve Buckley has Youkilis lighting up Comerica Park once again. Amalie Benjamin has Beckett firmly in control of this one. Buckley reports on Curt Schilling‘s catch session. Bradford looks at Dustin Pedroia’s skills at pinch hitting, which have saved the Red Sox a few times already. Admit it, you’re impressed that Manny knew that Lenny Harris is the all time pinch hit leader…
Edes’ notebook observes that the centerfield platoon has pretty much been an even split. Krasner’s notebook has Beckett picking career strikeout number 1000 last night. Bradford’s notebook has David Ortiz and Mike Lowell showing signs of rounding into form. Goldberg’s notebook has Pedroia not faked out by Detroit third baseman Carlos Guillen on a popup last night. Ballou’s notebook has the play reminding Francona of a play in the 2003 postseason between the Red Sox and A’s.
Nancy Marrapese-Burrell chats with new NESN field reporter Heidi Watney.
David Scott has Gordon Edes filing an appeal with the New York Times Company’s ERISA Management Committee.
Some former Patriots were in town yesterday, and there’s still plenty of spygate talk out there, including from Arlen Specter. Check out all the coverage on the all new PatriotsLinks.com – now with videos and photos as well.