Sixers Take Advantage Of Bradley’s Absence





PHILADELPHIA – Before Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinals, Philadelphia 76ers head coach Doug Collins stressed points in the paint as one of the biggest keys.

Then his team proceeded to outscore the Boston Celtics 42-16 in the paint, forcing Game 7 with a 82-75 victory.

This was an ugly game through and through. But the Sixers finally broke through offensively in the third quarter, largely because their guards were repeatedly able to get into the paint. And you had to wonder if things would have been different if the Celtics had Avery Bradley.

The second-year guard, who had made life tough for the Philly guards in the first four games, missed his second straight game with a pair of shoulder injuries. The Sixers’ Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner and Lou Williams took advantage.

Philly liked the Turner/Ray Allen matchup, and a couple of Turner post-ups produced buckets on the 9-0 run that seemed to turn the game around for the team offensively.

For most of the second half, the Sixers attacked Allen in isolations, and weren’t afraid to go at Rajon Rondo either. In particular it was Holiday (20 points and six assists) and Williams (11 points and six assists) who most took advantage of Bradley’s absence.

“They went to a lot of isos and they were picking who they wanted,” Celtics coach Doc Rivers said afterward. “We have to do a better job of covering for guys.”

The Boston Herald reported Wednesday night that it’s “doubtful” Bradley plays again this postseason. So yeah, the Celtics bigs will have to do a better job of covering for the guards that are still healthy … and Allen, who isn’t.

Of course, the more important number was the 16 points in the paint on the other end. The Sixers were able to keep Rondo in front of them, holding him to just nine points and six assists.

“I thought they really clogged the paint up pretty well on him,” Rivers said.

The Sixers also got back in transition to keep Kevin Garnett from getting deep post position. And they challenged every Boston shot at the rim.

Now, they just have to do all that again in Game 7.

32 Comments

  1. John says:

    The Celtics wont make the same mistakes the Bulls did, they will win Game 7.

  2. for all celtics n spurs fans, i dont mean to make you all angry, but , only 2 team can go to the final, n that 2 teams are not celtics, or spurs, the most ideal final is thunder vs the mighty heat

    • Dr. John H. Watson says:

      Mr Holmes, Sir, You seem to be forgetting the San Antonio Spurs are the best team in the league. They have won 18 straight games, they rotate 9+ guys who all contribute. They have good or even great defenders and solid or better scorers on every position. They can guard Durant with Jackson and Leonard, they can attack Westbrook with Parker and Ginobili and they have Tim Duncan who is still – at his old age – the best player on the block. The Thunder are still young and they have yet to overcome a pressure situation and just like last year they will face a deep, veteran team, that has already experienced everything out there and in additon to that has the homecourt advantage. The Thunder will not win this series, if they lose the first two games because they will not be able to come back and tie the series.
      Just thought to remind You, Sir. Gregg Popovich will make you relaize the inevitable soon enough…

  3. jefrey says:

    Heat will be the champ this year. Philly game 7

  4. jelars says:

    I will go for boston. Phil will be in pressure i guess coz it’s celtics home & besides they are tough veterans guys. But above all OKC will prevail

  5. J says:

    Nice disclaimer article. The Celtics have 3 HOFers and one of the best PGs in the league, but let’s pretend that Avery Bradley was the real key to this series. Gag.

  6. DrGuj27 says:

    I’m a celtics fan. Really dont care about this playoff run. Heats will make in the finals but will lose to the SPURS and a huge maybe in beating the THUNDER. Still choosing Thunder.

  7. Allen Iverson will play in game seven.

  8. Lol... says:

    Did I not say sixers in 7

  9. Fedor says:

    Preview of the Spurs vs. Thunder check it out on my blog… I got Thunder in 6. Click on the link to read why

    http://fedorsperspective.blogspot.com/2012/05/how-west-will-be-won.html

  10. jc says:

    PHILLY in 7 better FANS GO SIXERS

  11. adrixe says:

    I think Celtics will take game 7! It’s just a matter of playing hard and executing properly. give philly a credit for playing hard infront of their home crowd. The C’s should play hard and win this game!

  12. G MONEY says:

    BOO

  13. CHRISTIAN 149 says:

    Allen Iverson GO TO NEW YORK!!!

  14. spelkey55 says:

    I am a Celtics fan tried and true and it’s for sure if Doc don’t try using the fresh bench legs more game 7 might look just like 5 and 6.

  15. Spurs says:

    Spurs are gonna beat heat and go 16-0 in the mostseason

  16. Whats up with Allen Iverson why isnt he in the league, he’s got to be able to still play some ball the guy was one of the best, i would like to see him in the league, he’s got to be able to help someone ?

    • ST66 says:

      Because nobody wants him to cause problems, not practicing, holding the ball for 48 minutes, shooting throughout the night with 33% and wasting possessions. Everywhere he went, frustrated everybody and left. The guy has problems. I’m glad Philly got rid of him. Now, the young guys can grow because they are allowed to touch the ball!!!

  17. John From OKC says:

    I watched that game, and don’t understand why Greg Stiemsma didn’t get more floor time. Doc Rivers should know by now that Stiemsma is smarter than the typical rookie, as well as bigger. Keeping the opposition from getting points in the paint or 2nd chance opportunities comes naturally to him and the Celtics needed that badly last night.

  18. junielloyd says:

    Philly in 7!

  19. Law064 says:

    Boston shot so poorly and had many chances to win that game but they didn’t execute. Ray Allen is just cold point blank since he came back he’s been shooting very poor. The Celtic’s will be at home and that’s all they can look forward to home court. If they play anything like they did last night they will be fishing but I know that the C’s will show up. Pierce has to take over and KG has to be effective in the post. The Celt’s got hammered in the paint last night. Rondo had a bad game as well so I wouldn’t be worried if the Celtic’s play hard. Celtic’s will take game 7 by at least 10 points if they shoot the ball at least 45%

  20. Vladi says:

    Celtics will take game 7.Experience is what counts in a game full of pressure.

  21. Christiaen says:

    It would be the perfect Hollywood storybook for a movie with the emphasys on working hard, teamplay above all and not backing of from everybody… :-)
    That’s why it will never happen….

    • Theck says:

      Here’s another Hollywood storybook: An old team in which nobody has ever won a ring and that usually chokes in iumportant games is able to beat the clear favorite. Rings a bell ;-)
      Sometimes you really have hollywood endings. But I agree Philly won’t win a title.

  22. Mike J. says:

    Here’s a funny thought: what if Philly pulls off a major upset and wins a championship this year? Their defence has been excellent and they’re motivated by being the underdogs.

    • Slider821 says:

      Here’s reality: they’d have to beat OKC or the Spurs to do so; not going to happen.

      • Kia says:

        Here’s a thought that is reality, this is exactly why you play the games…Unless you can predict the future, oh wait “That’s not gonna happen”.

  23. dattebayo says:

    I would be so pleased if the 76ers send Boston fishin’. Then all the bs talk about the “rollin'” Celtics smoking the Heat and beating the Spurs in the Finals can stop. No Bradley and Allen, Pierce isn’t going well, that leaves only Rondo and KG and that isnt enough for either the Heat, Pacers, Thunder or the Spurs. Right now I am not even sure it will be enough against Philly :D

  24. NBAfan says:

    Oh man…nobody will believe me but after the all star break…I told my buddies that nobody will beat the Heat in the east except maybe Philly since they can catch them off guard with their style of play..and although it’s not sure they’ll even face the Heat or anybody else after Boston for that matter, they are making me look good.

    • Lil Jon says:

      Your really funny, we beat them 15 out of the last 16 times. What makes them so unexpected? The fast style of play that Miami does all the time? Miami has one of the best defense and transition defense. If you haven’t heard about the Lebron Wade Chasedown.