The Boston Celtics figure to throw out a number of different looks on the offensive and defensive end on Tuesday night against the Miami Heat. What will be the matchups defensively for the Celtics on Tuesday? Head coach Doc Rivers always gets creative with his defensive assignments and that figures to be the case again as he will need to continue to come up with ways to contain Lebron James and Dwayne Wade.
It will be interesting to see what his match-ups are to start the game. Paul Pierce on James is a guarantee, but after that it really is a toss-up. Smart money is on Courtney Lee guarding Wade, as the Celtics coveted Lee’s defensive abilities over the off season. Rajon Rondo figures to guard Mario Chalmers, but he will often be a roamer attempting to interrupt passing lanes, especially on drives into the paint. Kevin Garnett figures to guard Chris Bosh, as both players are very similar on the offensive and defensive end. That leaves Brandon Bass and I honestly really have no idea who Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra is going to start at the center position. I would think Joel Anthony, but he is such a stiff it wouldn’t surprise me if he started small with Shane Battier or Mike Miller in the starting lineup.
I anticipate the Celtics playing a decent amount of zone in this game. Rivers has utilized that strategy often in past match-ups and that does not figure to change much in this game. The Celtics will be at their best when they are forcing James and Wade to hit outside shots. If they hit them, then so be it. They are both at their best when they are driving to the hoop. They both get to the free throw line at a ridiculous rate and it will be the Celtics duty to force them into as many jump shots as possible.
The Celtics figure to have another excellent defensive squad this season and their first true test will be this week against the defending NBA Champions.
Rob Lunder covers the Boston Celtics for Rant Sports. For all Celtics news go to the team homepage on Rant Sports. Follow him on Twtter @rlunder18