Celtics aren't panicking after 0-3 start

624768.jpg

Celtics aren't panicking after 0-3 start

NEW ORLEANS There is disappointment, some frustration and a smidgen of disbelief among the Boston Celtics, who have lost their first three games of the season - a first in the Big Three era, which began in 2007.

But there's one emotion - panic - that's not being felt right now among the Celtics or coach Doc Rivers.

"It's so early. It's three games into the season," Rivers said.

He points out how the first two games - at New York and at Miami - were against "pretty good teams."

"And this team (New Orleans) is not bad," Rivers said. "Home opener, rested, waiting for us. I'm not going to overdue this. You should never lose three in a row. We should never lose three in a row. But we have, and there's nothing we can do about it."

While the Celtics try their best to avoid making excuses for losses, it's hard to ignore that the C's opened with three teams playing their first home game of the season.

So it stands to reason that those teams came out energy levels higher than normal, which may help account for why the Celtics seemed a step slow in just about every aspect of play in all three games.

"All the teams were the aggressors initially," said Celtics guard Keyon Dooling. "We were on our heels trying to bounce back. We can't be that type of team. We have to be a hit-first team if we want to be successful."

That would help, but solving all that ails this Boston Celtics team won't be easy.

As far as finding an answer, "If I knew that, I don't think we'd be in this situation, my man," said Kevin Garnett. "This is an adjustment league, and we will do just that. We have no choice."

Has Isaiah Thomas proven that he deserves a max deal?

Has Isaiah Thomas proven that he deserves a max deal?

Gary Tanguay, Lou Merloni, Michael Felger and Bob Ryan debate if Isaiah Thomas has proven that he deserves a max deal with the Celtics.

Bulls' point guard counsel spun to Isaiah Canaan in Game 4

Bulls' point guard counsel spun to Isaiah Canaan in Game 4

CHICAGO – The point guard carousel continues to swirl for the Chicago Bulls who will now give Isaiah Canaan a try as they continue to search for a suitable replacement for Rajon Rondo (right thumb) who is out indefinitely.

Canaan, a seldom-used backup this season, came off the bench and provided a major spark for the Bulls in 34 fairly productive minutes. 

He led all Chicago bench players with 13 points on 4-for-10 shooting which included a 3-for-7 showing from 3-point range. 

More than anything, Canaan looked like a serviceable playmaker which is a huge, huge upgrade to what Chicago got out of Jerian Grant and Michael Carter-Williams. 

Grant, who struggled mightily in Game 3 as well, was not ready for the moment. He couldn’t make shots, slow down Isaiah Thomas or impact the game other than negatively for the Bulls which is why Fred Hoiberg benched him after less than five minutes of court time. The dude had a plus/minus of -10 in less than five minutes (four minutes, 41 seconds to be exact).

The Bulls will need better play than that to have any shot at winning, which is why Hoiberg named Canaan the starter and not Michael Carter-Williams who like Grant, struggled in Games 3 and 4. 

“I really thought he (Canaan) did a good job picking up the ball and pressuring the point a full 94 feet," Hoiberg said. "I thought his initial ball pressure was good. We have to get off to a much better start if we want to have any chance of winning another game in this series. That’s two games in a row now we’ve gotten ourselves down 20 points and fought all the way back. Game 3 cut it to 1. Last night we took the lead and then had five empty possessions in a row where they scored on the other end. You spend so much energy digging out of that hole. We need to do a better job of using that energy in a better start."

Playing with energy may become an issue for Canaan who readily admits that not being in the regular rotation while racking up a bunch of DNP-CDs this season made it more challenging for him in Game 4 to get into a good flow. 

"The way I play, I was more worried about my wind,” Canaan told reporters. “God helped me out as much as possible. I’m looking forward to that next game and getting that rhythm back."