Celtics Eye Pistons After Lopsided Loss
ORLANDO – Smiles were hard to come by after the Celtics fell to Indiana 96-77 on Monday in Orlando. The lopsided defeat was a hard pill to swallow, but Boston’s young team has already begun the process of looking toward its next task at hand.
“We have to move on,” Celtics summer league head coach Jay Larranaga said. “We’ll watch video and we’ll learn from this.”
Initial feedback says that the Celtics plan to use Monday’s loss as motivation for Wednesday night, when they return to the court to take on the Detroit Pistons at 7 p.m. Phil Pressey was candid when discussing how Tuesday’s scheduled off day should be used by both he and his teammates.
“It would get me a day to think about how we just got beat by 20, and that’s going to make guys really be ready for Wednesday,” he said. “You get to sleep a day and think about what you did wrong and really, really focus in on your next game.”
Boston’s young players can also use Monday’s loss as a learning experience when it comes to competing at the NBA level.
“I think we got comfortable thinking it was going to be easy,” Larranaga said of the lessons his players can learn, referencing their relaxation after an early 18-point lead. “Coach (Brad Stevens) says that sometimes the biggest opponent is human nature, and that happened.
“You never saw a response from our guys. That response has to happen at the defensive end of the court. We were late on everything all night. We fouled too much. It makes the game very, very difficult.”
One of the reasons for Boston’s tardiness and foul problems may have been fatigue. Though the team was only playing in its second game of the week, it had been going hard for a solid week prior to this contest. The Celtics held five practices over Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday of last week before a long travel day to Orlando on the Fourth of July. They were back on the court for their first game on Saturday and had practice on Sunday before this afternoon’s contest.
No one on Boston’s team came close to using fatigue as an excuse, but it was hard to miss the physical clues on the court. The C’s were a step slow on defense all afternoon and many of their missed jumpers were either front-rimmed or airballed.
Needless to say, these players could use a day off to rest to recuperate before Wednesday’s game. It should benefit them both physically and mentally.
“It’s a good thing,” Marcus Smart said of the off day. “You can go see what you did wrong and learn from it and have that extra day to get that learning experience in and prepare and get ready for the next game.”
The Celtics believe that Tuesday’s day off is going to set them up well for their matchup with Detroit. They may have just taken a beating from Indiana, but that loss hasn’t shaken their confidence.
“We’re going to be ready. Believe that,” Pressey boldly stated. “I know that for a fact.”