Poor Man's KG pretty much lived up to billing. Played OK, but was part of tepid team effort on backboards and dished just a single dime.
60 min., 15 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists
Sasha Vujacic (eight points, two rebounds) and Ronny Turiaf (five points, two rebounds) helped stake Lakers to 51-46 halftime lead. But they wilted in second half, and they provided little help on the backboards.
Phil Jackson, Head Coach
Had his team ready to play at start, and made nice adjustment by putting Bryant on Cassell to slow him down. But he might have stuck too long with small lineup instead of going back to Radmanovic.
The Big Ticket was good early (eight points, four boards in the first quarter) and late (two-handed jam to seal deal) while setting defensive tone for Celtics.
66 min., 17 points, 12 rebounds, 3 assists
Led by old-timers Sam Cassell and P.J. Brown, they actually outplayed their more celebrated Lakers counterparts. Cassell (eight points) and Brown (two points, six boards, two assists) were especially big during periods when Pierce was out with either foul trouble or injury.
Doc Rivers, Head Coach
Take that, Zen Master! Rivers had his team ready to play from start, and got them to pick up the defensive intensity in second half. Also kept team calm when Pierce injury seemed to spell disaster.
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