Charles Barkley has dire prediction for Celtics chances against Bucks originally appeared on nbcsportsboston.com
Its not just the Celtics vs. the Bucks. Now weve got dueling predictions between Paul Pierce and Charles Barkley.
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Last Sunday, Pierce proclaimed, “I think its over,” after Boston rolled to a 22-point win in Game 1 in Milwaukee. After two straight Bucks wins, Barkley is just as confident in how this series will end… except hes got a different winner.
Predicting the Bucks to advance isnt going out on a huge limb; after all, they had the best record in the NBA this season and theyve put up 123 points in each of the last two games.
Celtics Pre-Game quick hit pod with Cedric Maxwell
But saying the Celtics wont win another game and will go out in five games? Especially with Marcus Smart potentially set to rejoin the lineup? That does make for a bold prediction, and one that silenced the rest of the TNT crew.
Veteran guard George Hill making major contribution for Bucks with Malcolm Brogdon sidelined
The Celtics will get their first chance to prove Barkley wrong Monday night, when they can even the series with a home win over the Bucks in Game 4. Coverage on NBC Sports Boston starts at 6 pm.
Share Share Celtics Pre-Game quick hit pod with Cedric Maxwell tweet share Reddit Pocket Flipboard Email Column composed by Josue Pavon for CLNS & CelticsBlog BOSTON — The Celtics will look to avoid a 3-1 hole in their best-of-7 series when they host the Bucks in Game 4 Monday night at TD Garden.
Video: Gordon Hayward is a liability, Game 4 is a must-win for the Celtics – Stephen A. | First Take
Cedric Maxwell and Josue Pavon previewed the match-up in the latest episode of the Cedric Maxwell Podcast of CLNS Media. Maxwell believes the Celtics second unit will be very important Monday.
After the Celtics reserves were outscored by Bucks backup guard George Hill while Pat Connaughton was efficient for Milwaukees second unit, Max believes only Bostons depth can salvage the series and push the Celtics to even things up before heading to Milwaukee for Game 5.
A lot of it is, theyre playing bully-ball, Maxwell said. Your bench has to score. (Pat) Connaughton cant score as many points as your bench, and (George) Hill cant score as many points as your bench. The strength of the Celtics is going to be their bench. Rozier did not have any points in that game (Game 3). You think (about) last year at this time, Terry Rozier was celebrated as Scary Terry. T-shirts flying around, all this. Terry Rozier has to find that niche where he can get back and he can be that dude because they need all hands on deck.
What makes the Celtics more dangerous is from top to bottom, I think, they have more talent than anybody in the NBA but when you have those gaps and those pitfalls, you cannot have Terry Rozier in a game and not score. I cant even imagine that — not score in a vital game.
Max also added that Jaylen Brown, by his assessment, has been the most consistent Celtics player in the series and that Jayson Tatums play in Game 3 was encouraging as the second-year forward was able to snap out of his recent playoff scoring slump.
While Roziers offensive production from the second unit is important for the Celtics, Gordon Haywards scoring is much more important, according to Max.
More than anybody, Gordon Hayward has to step up and be aggressive, Maxwell said. Instead of being a facilitator, he has to attack the rim. He has to get to the free-throw line. If you get Gordon Hayward to the free-throw line eight times, I think you have a better chance of winning the game and the Celtics just didnt do that.