When one star isn't enough in the NBA playoffs

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When one star isn't enough in the NBA playoffs

By JessicaCamerato
CSNNE.com

Carmelo Anthony was a one-man scoring machine in Game 2 against the Boston Celtics on Tuesday. He looked he like he could do anything he wanted with the ball -- drive, fade away, pull up for an improbable jumper -- scoring 42 points along the way.

There was one thing he couldnt do, though -- get a win for the New York Knicks.

Over the last four years, the success of the Boston Celtics has been rooted in team basketball, fueled by unselfish ball movement and the contributions of every player on the court. The more players involved in the offense, the more shot options that open up, and the harder it is to defend against them.

One player isnt always enough. Anthony's offensive showcase is not the first individual performance that has been trumped by a balanced team effort in the postseason.

Take a look at remarkable individual feats in the New Big Three era that have fallen short to a team collaboration.

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Game 2, First Round of 2011 Eastern Conference PlayoffsCeltics 96 - Knicks 93

Standout Performance
Carmelo Anthony: 42 points (14-30 FG, 4-8 3PG, 10-11 FT)
Total Team Points: 45.2

Next Up for Knicks
Toney Douglas: 14 points
Jared Jeffries: 10 points

Celtics Leading Scorers
Rajon Rondo: 30 points
Paul Pierce: 20 points
Ray Allen: 18 points

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Game 5, 2008 NBA FinalsLakers 103 - Celtics 98

Standout Performance
Paul Pierce: 38 points (10-22 FG, 2-6 3PG, 16-19 FT)
Total Team Points: 38.8

Next Up for Celtics
Ray Allen: 16 points
Kevin Garnett: 13 points

Lakers Leading Scorers
Kobe Bryant: 25 points
Lamar Odom: 20 points
Pau Gasol: 19 points

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Game 5, 2010 NBA FinalsCeltics 92 - Lakers 86

Standout Performance
Kobe Bryant: 38 points (13-27 FG, 4-10 3PG, 8-9 FT)
Total Team Points: 44.2

Next Up for Lakers
Pau Gasol: 12 points
Derek Fisher: 9 points

Celtics Leading Scorers
Paul Pierce: 27 points
Kevin Garnett: 18 points
Rajon Rondo: 18 points

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Game 6, First Round of 2009 Eastern Conference PlayoffsBulls 128 - Celtics 127 (3OT)

Standout Performance
Ray Allen: 51 points (18-32 FG, 9-18 3PG, 6-7 FT)
Total Team Points: 40.2

Next Up for Celtics
Glen Davis: 23 points
Paul Pierce: 22 points

Bulls Leading Scorers
John Salmons: 35 points
Derrick Rose: 28 points
Brad Miller: 23 points

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Game 2, First Round of 2009 Eastern Conference PlayoffsCeltics 118 - Bulls 115

Standout Performance
Ben Gordon: 42 points (14-24 FG, 6-11 3PG, 8-9 FT)
Total Team Points: 36.5

Next Up for Bulls
John Salmons: 17 points
Brad Miller: 16 points

Celtics Leading Scorers
Ray Allen: 30 points
Glen Davis: 26 points
Rajon Rondo: 19 points

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Game 7, 2008 Eastern Conference SemifinalsCeltics 97 - Cavaliers 92

This heated battle is an exception as LeBron James and Paul Pierce battled to advance their teams to the next round. There could only be one winner in this one-on-one duel.

Standout Performances
LeBron James: 45 points (14-29 FG, 3-11 3PG, 14-19 FT)
Total Team Points: 48.9

Paul Pierce: 41 points (13-23 FG, 4-6 3PG, 11-12 FT)
Total Team Points: 42.3

Next Up for Cavs
Delonte West: 15 points
Zydrunas Ilgauskas: 8 points

Next Up for Celtics
Kevin Garnett: 13 points
P.J. Brown: 10 points

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter athttp:twitter.comjcameratoNBA.She can bereached at jessicacamerato@gmail.com.

Tatum 'can't wait' for new challenge with Celtics

Tatum 'can't wait' for new challenge with Celtics

BOSTON – While the newest Boston Celtics were scattered about while at a community service event, 19-year-old Jayson Tatum was sitting in a really comfortable-looking chair, resting. 

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind unlike any he had ever experienced, beginning with the pre-draft process, to workouts, to the draft itself and all the appearances and media engagements that have followed. 

“It’s a lot,” Tatum, grinning, told CSNNE.com. “But I’m taking it one day at a time.”

That steady-as-she-goes approach served him well during his lone season at Duke. 

Keeping an even-keeled approach will bode well for him as he gears up for his first taste of NBA basketball beginning with summer league practice this week in preparation for next week’s summer league action which begins in Salt Lake City. 

Boston’s summer league opener will be July 3 against Philadelphia and the top overall pick Markelle Fultz, at the University of Utah’s Jon M. Huntsman Center.

Tatum, who has not played in a five-on-five game since Duke’s loss to South Carolina in the NCAA tournament, is admittedly excited to get back on the floor this week. 

“I can’t wait,” he said. 

Celtics Nation feels the same way about Tatum, selected with the third overall pick in last week’s NBA draft. 

Although it’s only a preseason game, there will be expectations and with that, possibly some added pressure for Tatum to show he was such a coveted player by the Celtics. 

“That’s why Duke helped me a lot,” he told CSNNE.com. “Duke, the best program in college basketball, we were always on the national spotlight good or bad, whether we were winning or losing. That will help me a lot preparing for the Boston Celtics.”

And like Duke, Tatum will have to fight his way on to the court although he readily admits the challenge is much greater in the NBA. 

“Isaiah Thomas, Jaylen Brown, Jae Crowder … we didn’t have those guys at Duke,” Tatum said. “It’s gonna be tough; just try my best and get in where I fit in.”

Tatum said he will at times lean on his more experienced teammates, one of which was a former teammate of his – sort of – in Jaylen Brown. 

“I’ve known Jaylen for a while,” Tatum said. “We played with and against each other in high school at AAU camps. 

Tatum added, “at the AAU camps, sometimes we were on the same team and sometimes we were not.”

While much has been made about how the two are similar, Tatum sees both having strengths that complement, rather than compete, with each other. 

“He’s further along than Jaylen was skill-wise and he’s not as far along as Jaylen physically,” said Danny Ainge, Boston’s president of basketball operations. “Again, he’s 19 years old. I don’t want to put any expectations … I want to give him time to grow. We’ll see. He’ll definitely have a role, get a chance to play. And how well he performs is up to him.”

Tatum’s assessment of his game and Brown’s goes as follows:

“He’s a lot stronger, bigger than me,” Tatum, who is 6-foot-8, 204 pounds, acknowledged. “He’s much more athletic. Offensively, I think that’s what I excel in, being smooth and my ability to score. I can just learn from him, the things that he went through last year.”

One of the things he has already picked up on, is that Brown is a pretty smart – and at times clever – dude. 

Not long after Tatum picked jersey number 11, Brown, who wears number 7, took to social media and came up with a 7-11 theme that has already lead to some pretty snazzy t-shirt designs. 

“I thought it was funny,” Tatum said. “It’s catchy; I like it.”

And the Celtics really like Tatum’s game which has been compared at times to former Celtic great Paul Pierce. 

“I hate to make those comparisons when kids are 19 and let his game evolve into whatever it is,” Ainge said. “The similarity is they have good footwork. They both have really good ways to create space for shots. But the similarity … they’re both very good defensive rebounders. Those are two things that stand out to me with Jayson that are Paul characteristics.”

Tatum knows he’s a long way from being in the same company as Celtic royalty such as Pierce. 

Before then he must first earn minutes on the floor which will not be an easy task. 

But Tatum’s demeanor, much like his game, has seemingly always been a bit more mature than most of his fellow basketball brethren. 

Tatum credits his parents, Justin Tatum and Brandy Cole.

“They raised me to be different, be more mature and stand out above the crowd and be my own person and be comfortable in my skin,” Tatum said. “That’s how I’ve always been.”

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: How does the Chris Paul trade affect the Celtics?

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BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: How does the Chris Paul trade affect the Celtics?

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0:41 - Tom Curran, Tom Giles, and Kayce Smith discuss the Rockets acquiring Chris Paul and how that trade can actually have an affect on the Celtics plans.

5:06 - Ian Thomsen joins BST to talk about if the Celtics are the front runners for Paul George, what would be too much to give up to the Pacers, and why it’s important to sign Hayward before trading for George.

11:21 - Evan Drellich joins from Fenway Park to discuss Rick Porcello getting his 10th loss of the season and if the struggling offense might be a season-long problem. 

14:58 - Tom Curran and Kayce Smith give their thoughts on Nate Burleson saying that Julian Edelman is the most under-appreciated receiver in the last 10 years.