After watching Sasha Pavlovic play the first few games this year, forgive me if I never had any faith that I would be writing anything positive about him. Pavlovic looked like the last guy off the bench for any team due to his poor play. Pavlovic was a shooter that could not shoot and an aggressive defender that was not aggressive. hence it did not shock me that Doc Rivers buried the man on his bench.
However, basketball is a funny game and an NBA season has many twists and turns. Pavlovic found his way into not only some minutes against the Orlando Magic on Monday due to injuries, but a start. During that game the Celtics got quite the game from Pavlovic. Pavlovic would play with a lot of energy on both ends of the floor. Pavlovic hustled on every defensive stand and was a major factor in Orlando’s offensive struggles as he help defended at just the right times. On the offensive end he was a solid moving to open spots and getting deep in the paint at times of fthe drive. His stat line showed it. Pavlovic would finish with a solid nine points on 4-of-9 shooting with four rebounds, two blocks, and two steals over 34 minutes.
Perhaps Pavlovic even earned a few more minutes. Doc might be wise to let Pavloic play if he continues to play the way that he did on Monday. The Celtics have had issues on the injury front this season. Guys like Paul Pierce, Marquis Daniels, and Mickael Pietrus may be ahead of him on the depth chart, but they all have injury history. This means that if Pavlovic plays it can cut down on the wear and tear on their bodies.
The other factor is Marquis Daniels just has not been effective. He does a nice job handling the ball up the floor, but his shot has just not been there. He also has missed a lot of the shots off the drive that he needs to make. If Pavlovic hustles the way he did and can provide the offensive stroke that he showed, then he will get the minutes over Daniels.
The bottom line is Pavlovic was wretched and earned a spot deep in Boston’s bench purgatory. However, he may have begun to seize the opportunity to get himself out of the dog house and into the rotation. The Celtics will not have Ray Allen and Mickael Pietrus again on Thursday. This means Pavlovic will have another chance to shine. He needs to show again that he could be counted on for production. The only question is can Sasha Pavlovic seize his opportunity. Remember Go Green Or Go Home!!!!!!!