Well that game was ... interesting.
Paul Pierce made history by eclipsing Larry Bird's scoring total to rise to second in all-time scoring in Celtics history, but only after forcing three after three in the first half. And Derrick Brown was a force to be reckoned with, finishing a perfect 10-for-10 on the night.
To their credit, the Bobcats fought to stay in this one late, despite the Celtics glaringly outclassing the Bobcats talent. Early on, Charlotte and Boston exchanged the lead often, surprising me, and probably many others. Reggie Williams hit a few threes early and the Bobcats were moving the ball somewhat decently to find the open man after the initial garbage-quality minutes. But mostly it was just the Celtics shooting themselves in the foot that led to the Bobcats staying within reach. They had some sloppy turnovers and seemingly kept passing up good looks solely to try to get Paul Pierce the three-pointer that would get him past Larry Bird. The Bobcats didn't have many turnovers, but weak shot-selection served the same purpose anyway.
Things got out of hand in the second half as ball movement slowed to a stand-still more often than in the first half. Meanwhile, the Celtics offense was just consistently doing the opposite and began to really make the most of the Bobcats weakness in the paint. Not even Derrick Brown catching fire late could help the Bobcats make up ground and the Celtics ultimately cruised to a 10-point victory.
What can I say about Derrick Brown tonight? The man was just killing it. He played smart basketball, hitting shots inside and outside, driving efficiently and finishing at the rim. He's been playing quite well lately, scoring about 11 points per game on 54 percent shooting over the last nine games.
Kemba Walker was pretty Kemba Walker-y, scoring pretty well, I suppose. He showed short flashes of some nice passing, but to put it bluntly, two assists on the night is not a sign of a great distributing night. He had some fine dimes that weren't finished by Boris Diaw or Bismack Biyombo or whomever, but two assists are two assists. There will be nights like these where he finds his own shots more easily than he finds teammates, especially against defenses like the Celtics', so I wouldn't be too concerned, but I think we knew this coming in. He's still growing into his role and I know I'm seeing him develop more as a passer, though it's nothing drastic.
Bismack Biyombo on the other hand, had a rather disappointing night. His hands seemed to be sculpted from the finest slabs of rump roast at the nearest Boston butcher shop, fumbling a couple passes that should have been decent scoring looks. His defense was nothing to go streaking over, affecting shot selection in the paint, but not a whole lot else. He didn't rebound well either.
Reggie Williams continued his strong play, scoring well and even passing efficiently. Can't ask for more out of the man.
As for everyone else - meh. Tyrus Thomas and Boris Diaw combined for 3-12 shooting while nearly giving up a triple-double to Paul Pierce and making Kevin Garnett look about 7 years younger. Byron Mullens was what we've begun to expect from him, hitting those long twos and being generally abhorrent on defense. Cory Higgins... lol, just lol.
The Celtics were just too good for the Bobcats. Ray Allen was too quick for his defenders. Rajon Rondo quietly had a double-double as he picked apart Charlotte's defense. Their frontcourt too strong. Their defense wasn't exemplary, but it got the job done. The Celtics hardly looked like world-beaters, but with their advantage in talent, they didn't need to be to handily beat Charlotte.