The Celtics beat the Pistons 94-80 (it was a road game for Boston!) to take a 2-1 series lead. Let me emphasize those word in the parentheses: IT WAS A ROAD GAME! This is a great burden that is now off their shoulders. They knew they had to win a game in Detroit if they wanted to win the series. They came out with tons of intensity.
The bench was off the charts. Perk (Kendrick Perkins) knew that he had to come out confident on both ends. You saw him take charge on offense and post up down low. On the defensive end, he was tough and energized. Posey did some great defensive work; Doc Rivers has to give a round of applause to his entire squad. Of course he has to remind them that there are more wins to be had in Detroit. They have got to come out and attempt to win two straight road games.
If you are the Pistons, you feel pretty bad. You played a horrible first half. The offense was horrific and the Celts were able to execute their offense effectively. The great find was that 1-2-2 defense that rendered the Celtics offense quizzical. I would like the Pistons to play small ball more as well. Stuckey had a tremendous game and his scoring was a big plus.
The Celtics had a 16 point advantage in points in the last two minutes of quarters. There has been an increasing amount of talk about the NBA being a first quarter league and the Celts had the biggest advantage in this quarter (in terms of points in the last two minutes of quarters). Checkout the quarter-to-quarter breakdown of this stat on NBAtipoff.googlepages.com.
I like the Pistons to respond in game four. The Celts aren't going to win two straight on the road; they haven't been consistent enough during the playoffs. Detroit will come out with a lot more energy, expect them to win the all important first quarter.