Boston Celtics Ponder Lineup Changes In Game 4 Versus Cleveland Cavaliers
The Boston Celtics may be pondering a lineup change to counter the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 4.
The Boston Celtics took their 2-0 lead over the Cleveland Cavaliers on the road last Saturday. Feeling confident about their advantage, the Celtics went to Cleveland and were embarrassed in a blowout 116-86 defeat. That has now led to thoughts of a lineup change (courtesy of NBA.com) for the Celtics.
When talking with reporters on Sunday, Boston Celtics’ coach Brad Stevens did not openly admit to a slight change in his approach for an important Game 4. However, Stevens did not rule anything out for the Celtics.
The Cavaliers made some minor, yet key adjustments in Game 3 which played a role in their win over the Celtics. It was clear from the onset that the Celtics were caught off balance by what the Cavaliers were doing.
On defense, the Cleveland Cavaliers swarmed to the basketball. They challenged the Celtics early and often. The Cavaliers rarely gave the Celtics easy looks in the opening quarter of Game 3. Once the Celtics began to wilt a little bit, confidence swung towards the Cavaliers’ direction.
Point guard George Hill struggled in the postseason for the Cavaliers. Hill went on to make his first three shots. That gave him a surge early on. It was apparent that George Hill was feeling himself. The biggest, yet most subtle adjustment the Cavaliers made in Game 3 was to make the Celtics worry about George Hill at the beginning of the game.
The Cleveland Cavaliers early empowerment of George Hill set the tone early.
Vice Sports pegs George Hill as an important cog for the Cavaliers. He is player that should force the Boston Celtics to adjust.
One way that the Boston Celtics may adjust is by putting Aron Baynes in the starting lineup at Game 4. Doing so will allow the Celtics to counter the Cavaliers’ big lineup that has Tristian Thompson in the starting five.
The Celtics can put Jaylen Brown on George Hill early with that lineup. Brown’s size would give Hill trouble and perhaps run him off the three-point line.
Another move that the Celtics could be pondering is inserting forward Semi Ojeleye in the starting lineup in an effort to set a defensive tone early.
Look for the Boston Celtics to stick with their regular starting five, with Aron Baynes perhaps coming in to replace Marcus Morris. The Celtics will make some defensive adjustments to force the basketball into LeBron James’ hands exclusively.
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