Boston Celtics: Coach Doc Rivers Needs Better Rebounding

By Rob Nelson

BOSTON- The last few NBA seasons have seen the Boston Celtics be one of the worst rebounding teams in the NBA. I am not one of those guys that believe that this lack of rebounding is the main reason the Boston Celtics have not won an NBA title. I mean the 2010 NBA Finals saw the Celtics obliterated on the boards by the Los Angeles Lakers and still come within five minutes of an NBA title. However, this lack of rebounding has made it very difficult for the Celtics to truly contend for an NBA title.

Watching the NBA Eastern Conference Finals against the Miami Heat, one cannot help but see how the lack of rebounding killed this team. LeBron James killed Boston on the glass. If James did not on the first attempt then he would put his own miss in. James also seemed to creep in to the paint and clean up his teammates mess to many times for the Celtics to earn a needed victory.

Granted a lot of this lack of rebounding against Miami can be explained. The Avery Bradley injury forced Boston to help defend against both Dwayne Wade and LeBron James instead of doubling only one of them. This strategy left the paint unprotected a times for easy boards for the Heat. The Boston Celtics also made a conscious effort to emphasize getting back on defense and sacrificed offensive rebound chances in order to halt the lethal Miami transition offense.

However, Boston still could have done a lot better on the glass. Big men Brandon Bass and Greg Stiemsma could have done a much better job boxing out their man. The Celtics also could have fought a little harder for offensive boards and still got back in transition.

The good news is Boston got better rebounding due to the off season signings. A healthy Chris Wilcox is a better rebounder than Greg Stiemsma. Center Jason Collins also can get dirty on the glass better than Steimsma or Ryan Hollins. Jeff Green is also a better rebounder than Mickael Pietrus. The team also landed a great natural rebounder in rookie Jared Sullinger. Sullinger has already made it clear that his main focus is rebounding. These signings should vault Boston from the bottom of the pack to at least the middle of the pack.

The Boston Celtics addressed the rebounding problems through personnel moves this off season. The bottom line is a better rebounding Celtics team will be a better team at both ends of the floor. The Celtics defense will not get demoralized or tired out by giving up second chance opportunities like McDonald’s sells hamburgers. The offense will be more effective with easy second chance points. I see a very successful NBA season in Boston this year with this area shored up. Remember Go Green Or Go Home!!!!!!

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