Skip to content

NBA finals, Lakers Celtics Game 6: For Boston, it is win now or never

Jun 15, 2010, 1:20 PM EDT

Pierce_celebrates.jpgThere’s the math, and then there is the reality.

The math says Boston needs to win just one of the two games in Los Angeles to win the title. They won Game 2, they’ve proven they can win on this floor. History says they can do it — the won a Game 7 in Los Angles back in 1969.

The reality is the Celtics want no part of a Game 7.

Right now, the Celtics have the Lakers frustrated and on the ropes. Their defensive intensity has left the Lakers dumbfounded on offense, forcing Kobe Bryant to try and do it all himself. The Celtics bench brings the energy the Lakers do not. Boston has all the momentum.

Lose Game 6 and that momentum swings. The Lakers become confident again. Plus, home teams win Game 7s more often than the Celtics want to think about.

Boston has done a fantastic job on defense, realizing that Andrew Bynum is not a real threat right now and no longer fearing to help off of him as they did in the first couple games. The Lakers don’t have an answer for that — Boston has worn down Pau Gasol with the tag team of Kendrick Perkins and Kevin Garnett. Bynum can’t help. Lamar Odom is… Lamar Odom. Ron Artest is in the corner hesitating then shooting threes.

Boston needs to come out, set the tone defensively tonight, keep the Lakers on the perimeter. Own the paint. Boston has to continue to dominate on the glass, they need to board like madmen. Then they need to run, to get Rajon Rondo in the open court and Paul Pierce at the three-point line. The Celtics need to get back in transition defense — they are not going to shoot like they did in Game 5, and the Lakers will be looking to get some easy buckets. Boston needs to get them to slow down and face their half-court defense. Which is a wall.

Boston needs to do it tonight. A Game 7 can be fluky, can turn on little things and lucky bounces. The kind of things that go to the home team. The kind of things that go to a confident team. Right now, the Lakers are not that. Close them out in Game 6 and the get banner 18. Keep the momentum.

Because if the Lakers get confident, if they feel they have figured it out, if they force a Game 7, things will feel very different. They will look different. Plus Boston doesn’t really want to risk facing what Kobe Bryant could do in one game with it all on the line.

  1. Lion Woods - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:10 PM

    I say again! Lakers will prevail. Game 6 will be a party with a star studded cast at Staples. NBA bigs wanted Game 7 all along and the refs, the fans and the Commish will all be on the same page in getting the Victory for the big showdown on Thursday. I saw the writing on the wall. One caveat is if Ray Allen and Pierce decide to get it done by shooting the lights out; Houston we may have a problem. I hope Magic Johnson gives the team a pep talk before the tip because he is the man who always played to win. Where is James Worthy when you need him, instead we have to pin our hopes on Ron Artest who up until now, I thought could at least score a few points. The bench needs to play better as well. Farmar and the crew look like they play in a 6 foot and under league at Venice Beach. Anyway, Go Lakers and may the best team win.

  2. Lion Woods - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:14 PM

    I say again! Lakers will prevail. Game 6 will be a party with a star studded cast at Staples. NBA bigs wanted Game 7 all along and the refs, the fans and the Commish will all be on the same page in getting the Victory for the big showdown on Thursday. I saw the writing on the wall. One caveat is if Ray Allen and Pierce decide to get it done by shooting the lights out; Houston we may have a problem. I hope Magic Johnson gives the team a pep talk before the tip because he is the man who always played to win. Where is James Worthy when you need him, instead we have to pin our hopes on Ron Artest who up until now, I thought could at least score a few points. The bench needs to play better as well. Farmar and the crew look like they play in a 6 foot and under league at Venice Beach. Anyway, Go Lakers and may the best team win.

  3. Jed Kelson - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:21 PM

    THE LAKERS ARE GOING TO WIN!! WHEN PUSH COMES TO SHOVE THE LAKERS ALWAYS DO WHAT THEY HAVE TO DO TO WIN!! PAU GASOL IS GOING TO HAVE A GREAT GAME. HE KNOWS THAT HE WAS RESPONSIBLE THAT THE CELTICS WON IN 2008. HE WILL NOT LET THAT HAPPEN AGAIN. HE WILL SCORE 25 POINTS AND HAVE 16 REBOUNDS. LAMAR ODAM ALWAYS COMES THROUGH IN THE CLUTCH WHEN THEY REALLY NEED HIM. KOBE BRYANT WILL HAVE HIS USUAL 30 POINTS. THE LAKERS WILL WIN TONIGHT AND AGAIN ON THURSDAY NIGHT. BET THE FARM ON IT!!!

  4. Hackpiper - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:41 PM

    Yeah, I suppose that its true that “Boston doesn’t really want to risk facing what Kobe Bryant could do in one game with it all on the line.” Well, its all on the line for Kobe and the Lakers in game 6 too. That’s why there’s a two-game dynamic here. I think it entirely possible that the Celtics could lose it tonight…and come back with ferocity in game 7.
    The difference this year is that the Lakers are supposed to be here and were pre-annointed to win the title. According to conventional wisdom, the Celtics shouldn’t have even made it beyond the early rounds of the playoffs, if that…much less be here at a possible close-it-out game six in the finals. The Lakers have sorely disappointed their fans and LA…and the Celtics have spectacularly exceeded all expectations across the board.
    As a Celts fan, I want them to win the title of course. But they’ve already won the nominal awards for grit, determination, never-say-die perserverance, and all round teamwork.
    LA has a lot to prove tonight…and Thursday if they are lucky enough to get there. Celts have already won my respect for their gusty spirit.

  5. Dr Gonzo - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:42 PM

    “THE LAKERS ARE GOING TO WIN!! WHEN PUSH COMES TO SHOVE THE LAKERS ALWAYS DO WHAT THEY HAVE TO DO TO WIN!! ”
    If this is the case… please explain 2008 for me… remember when the C’s donkey punched the lakers in a game 6. please explain

  6. dragonswizardz - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:58 PM

    Boston has a great team, no mistake. But they have now awakened a sleeping giant ~~ the Lakers. Every test this season & post~season the Lakers have met {& conquered} as a team. Yes, the individuals are great {Kobe, Pau, Fisher}; yes the bench at times uninspired but always somehow able to provide the minutes needed in the crunch; yes Phil is the best coach in the NBA (Doc a close 2d). Yes, the Lakers were lousy in game 5 & Boston was damned good totally outplaying the Lakers & winning most of the key battles. And yet ~~~~~ Boston SHOULD’VE won by 30-40 points emphasizing their dominance ~~~ but they DIDN’T. They won by 5 points ~ a less than scintillating, dominating point spread. After all, they were leading by 13 in the middle of the 3d quarter. What happened? The Lakers, that’s what happened ~~ they got their game on track & from then on outplayed Boston. Yes, a couple plays here or there ~ Artest not making the layup & missing the free throws ~~ a lucky call off the rim when the Celtics were breathing much too hard & in difficulty {it probably should’ve gone to the Lakers right then} ~~ that saved the game for Boston. BUt only by FIVE POINTS, not what the difference should’ve been. Think the Lakers won’t be up tonight? Think Kobe & Fish won’t have their game on? Think Casol won’t play {& score} much better than in game 5? Yeah, the Lakers are sitting pretty good right now & are on their home court.

  7. cuzzenbud - Jun 15, 2010 at 2:59 PM

    Hackpiper, I couldn’t agree with you more.

  8. npoleon06 - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:12 PM

    I agree with Hackpiper. As a Celts fan..win or lose in thios series the Celts have done a fantastic (unexpected) job. But before we crown LA lets remember that 1)the Celts have won the last 2 without Ray Allen and 2) LA has been playing without Odom (who I think has mad skills). If serve holds and these 2 guys don;t show up tonight you gotta go with the Celts.

  9. Boston Blackie - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:13 PM

    Jed Kelson is a romanticist and a pipe dreamer. The Celtics are the Fakers DADDY! This will be over very soon! Poor Jack Nicholson. He is in for a Hollywood moment and it won’t be pretty!

  10. 18 is Tonight - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:22 PM

    I really can’t stand these disillusioned Lakers Fans….I mean, are you serious?! “They Will Bounce Back?” HAHAHA! Thats the talk of a desperate fan base that has had their spirit broken. Its pitiful – really. The C’s are a T-E-A-M! This is a TEAM Sport and the Lakers don’t have the bench or the TEAM mentality to make this happen. Sorry, losers! This is what you get for praising the play of one star player all year. Wait – thats an overstatement – most of you pitiful Lakers Fans are a bunch of bandwagon jumping losers anyway – hell, in a week you won’t even be thinking of this team – you’ll be too busy hanging at the beach and trying to be extras on stupid shows like “Keeping Up With the Kardashains”. HAHAH…suckers!
    UGLY SISTER! UGLY SISTER! UGLY SISTER! The Lakers are the Ugly Sister in this NBA Finals….Losers.

  11. yarlmak - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:35 PM

    Forget the cliches (“back against the wall”, “nothing to lose”, etc. etc.), its all about the matchups and consistent teamwork. With Bynum as a relative non-factor, you’ve got Kendrick Perkins as primary defender on Gasol, wearing him down and keeping him from getting deep in the paint. Then its KG – LO. No comment. After that Derek Fisher on either Rondo or Ray Allen, a problem either way for LA. Best matchup for LA? of course, its Kobe v. Ray Allen, which is not enough when 2 or more of Boston’s scorers are hitting. Then Paul Pierce v. Ron Artest- slight edge to the C’s there, eh?
    The bench- spectacular. Cs have no answer off the bench for Sheed and Big Baby. Lamar Odom is just one guy. If you had Artest off the bench, that would be worth talking about (which is where he should be starting). LA has nothing even close to Tony Allen to come off the bench and neutralize/slow down the C’s best scorer.
    The final matchup seems to be team execution- defensively and offensively- which has been tilting towards the Cs ever since game 1.
    If Bynum’s knee magically heals up, then the matchups change and its a different analysis. But it doesn’t really look like that’s going to happen. So if you are a Lakers fan, you have a very big, very legitimate “what if” when the likely event occurs tonight…Bynum’s knee. But as a C’s fan I’m feeling very good about the dynamic between the teams as the series has progressed and as the matchups have revealed the true depth of the C’s team and the apparently shaky foundation of the Lakers.

  12. Omnius - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:36 PM

    The Ancient Celtics will come up chokers tonight and Thursday as the Lakers will play much better at home. The Celtics are 1-7 in closeout games on the road over the past 3 years, they couldn’t closeout the Lakers on the road in 2008. Just the Hollywood script that says that the Lakers will come back and win games 6 and 7 and become repeat champs. If the refs don’t help out the Celtics too much like they’ve done constantly missing foulcalls on the Celtics the Lakers will prevail. The Lakers will shoot better at home while the Celtics will shoot worse. Lakers in 7 games and then the Fat Lady will be singing the Blues for the Over-the-Hill Gang Green!

  13. LAKER MAN - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:38 PM

    I have to give credit to the Celtics. F*&^K Boston. The refs helped you guys out all 3 games. Even on GAME 2 in LA they helped out. Here we are back home, HOME COURT that is. The refs will be on our side. We dont really need them but now there going to call all those plays that makes people think you guys have this great defense. Watch that wall disappear tonight and tomorrow. LAKERS have descent defense, everyone has seen the flopping by Rondo and Pierce. It was on national TV. I say Boston is going to get there hearts broken, stomped on and eaten up tonight at Staples Center. Thats a long flight home the Lakers had to face in 08′, its Bostons turn now. LA get ready to party tonight and in GAME 7. Here comes a parade !!! BACK TO BACK CHAMPS TRICK. BOSTON CANT DO THAT !! YOURS TRULY, THE LAKER MAN ! SHOUT OUTS TO THE REFS !!!
    WE LOVE L A !!!

  14. K. Appiah - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:38 PM

    In the NBA finals, you need to rebound to win no matter what. Why Pau Gaso or Lamar Oldom or Ron Artest are so useless on the court mainly the last two players. They should be fired from the LA team because they are just ‘ornement’ pretending to play. Gasol looks like he has no bone in his hands. This is the finals and it is a ‘man’s game’. If you cannot stand the heat, do not be in the kitchen. You need to play hard and very determinedly to win a title. Do you remember Dennis Rodman with Michael Jordan and S. Peppen inthe finals. They played hard to win. I am a Lakers’fan but Artest and Oldom are just disgusting, the way they play. Come on, Kobe cannot do it all by himself and you do not need to be a genius to realize that.

  15. Lakers4Lyfe - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:40 PM

    Celtics fans, in our house won’t win another game, sorry. I can’t wait to see Paul Pierce cry when the final seconds slip away tonight and game 7. And we will do it without throwing vodka bottles on the floor, unlike the drunk scrubs in Boston. So get ready to throw your beer and vodka bottles at your TV’s tonight Boston and cry about the refs like you always do. Your basketball team is almost as bad as your pathetic Red Sox. Boston fans are worse than Philly fans, except they cry more about officials. Watch a real basketball team protect home court tonight, something you failed to do for three games.

  16. obvious - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:55 PM

    Your “team” is a joke. Just like you are. You and your team are also hypocrites. Kobe cries just as much as anyone else does, and fisher flops like a pancake. Pierce ripped the ball away from kobe in the 4th and Kobe whined for a foul. Secure the ball, Paul wanted it more than you did! Outplayed – Like LA has been all series. My money is on Artest decking a Boston player when the clock runs out.

  17. I'm from Illinois - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:56 PM

    I’m geographically in the middle of these two storied franchises. I predict that the Celtics win on three factors- Doc Rivers and Paul Pierce and Celtic Pride. Lakers are a great franchise but Celtics have that all powerful intangible called Celtic Pride.

  18. DCLAKERFAN - Jun 15, 2010 at 3:56 PM

    DOES YOUR MAMA KNOW HOW STUPID YOU SOUND??? NEVER MIND I’LL ASK HER TONITE WHILE WE PREPARE FOR GAME 7!!!!!

  19. dantefromdc - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:09 PM

    Whoever said the C’s can’t close out in LA is on drugs. They already proved that in 2008. They proved it this post season by beating them in LA. You LA fans are dillusional. LA fans remind me of the tea baggers and republicans….. Boston has a better team. LA has the best player, but this is a TEAM game. You can’t expect to win a ship versus Boston with everybody waiting around for the messiah(kobe) to rain manna down from heaven. Celtics in six is what I said before the series started and I’m sticking to that. BEAT LA! BEAT LA!! BEAT LA!!! No homo.

  20. Lakers4Lyfe - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:12 PM

    haha, guess you didn’t read the piece today in the Wall Street Journal? The Celtics are the biggest crybabies, as are their fans … no, I fully expect you not to show your face here tomorrow after the Celtics lose game 6 and game 7. So just get your beer and vodka and toss some cans at the TV tonight, then come back here and complain about the refs. ‘obvious’ you must be a Red Sox fan, too? It’s obvious.

    The Celtics have been the bigger complainers in the series, taking issue with 48% of the calls against them. The Lakers have been more reserved in their protests, complaining about only 36% of the calls against them.
    Ray Allen has been the biggest complainer of the series, with a 73% complain rate through the first five games. Kendrick Perkins (despite his technicals) and Rasheed Wallace are right behind him, with complain rates of 68% and 65%, respectively.

    Celtics are a joke and so are their fans. Just like the Red Sox, ironically. Is it something in the water in Boston? Well, welcome to LA for the next two games. TV repair is gonna be a good business to be in if you live in Boston, because there are going to be thousands of broken TV sets after Thursday.

  21. Yahlmeh Bitschez - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:19 PM

    There is no team that can handle the Celtics if they each play to their individual potential. No team.

  22. dantefromdc - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:23 PM

    And just how the hell does the wall street journal of all media outlets calculate the complain rate??? If they were doing a good job KOBEs would be at 100%. You laker fans are like tea baggers n republicans. Go get some toilet paper for your mouth and some mouth wash for the smell.

  23. Anonymous - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:28 PM

    The team that has two starters show up to play and a strong showing from the bench will win!

  24. DavidJSternIsCrooked - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:30 PM

    We all know there is no way the refs are going to let the Lakers lose this game. Pierce and Garnett will each get two fouls in the first 5 minutes, Allen will have 4 by half-time, and the Celtics will never be able to get any rhythm going. I fully expect another 50+ foul game (and another 3-1 advantage in FTs, like Celtics had to overcome in Game 5) the as the refs follow Stern’s marching orders to ensure the series goes seven.

  25. 18 is Tonight - Jun 15, 2010 at 4:35 PM

    The Refs have helped the C’s! HAHA! You must be clinically brain dead “Lakers Man”

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

Why can't Lakers have a player-coach?
Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. K. Love (4420)
  2. T. Warren (4132)
  3. L. James (4069)
  4. R. Allen (3671)
  5. A. Wiggins (3412)
  1. K. Bryant (2973)
  2. D. Rose (2891)
  3. E. Bledsoe (2784)
  4. J. Nelson (2742)
  5. C. Anthony (2445)