Brandon Bass scored 18 points in the third quarter, further proving that this Celtics-76ers series makes no sense. Or … does it?
To me, it’s actually a little more simple that you’d think. The 76ers, throughout this series, just aren’t paying attention to the Celtics’ big men. We’ve talked about this several times in this StoryStream, and it’s still true.
But in this quarter, the Celtics made two adjustments. First, Rajon Rondo smartly switched a lot of play calls to run pick and roll with Bass. The 76ers had to honor Rondo because he scored a couple hoops early in the game, and they were reluctant to leave Paul Pierce or Ray Allen. That left Bass open around the basket.
Second, Bass himself started to move a bit more. Previously content to get the ball at 17 feet, Bass made several strong cuts towards the rim when the 76ers stopped paying attention to him. He hasn’t done that very much this series, but obviously someone got it into his head that the 76ers aren’t guarding him.
Eighteen points seems like a lot, but an unexpected boost like that is what happens when a player realizes the opponent is helping off him.
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