The Big Four (at least two or three of them) have to step up. It would be nice if all four (KG, Ray, Rondo and Pierce) would step up. If they do, the series will be tied at two heading into Sunday Night's game 4 in Boston at 7 on ABC. Paul Pierce has been an enigma in this series. Trying to figure out what a perennial all-star is doing playing like this in the biggest games of his life along with 2008. He's too good to play like this. He's got to get it together. I think the bench guys, Big Baby Davis, 'Sheed and Nate Robinson, who has been a big plus lately, need to give the team quality minutes. It's a team game, but guys like Pierce and Allen are going to have to step up tonight.
Kobe's been pretty good. He's made some big shots, though he's not shooting that well from the floor. He was 10-for-29 in game three, but Derek Fisher bailed the Lakers out in the fourth with 11 big points. One thing the Lakers are doing is playing great defense. Everybody thinks of Kobe and the high scoring Lakers and that's been their MO since the Magic days, but this team is predicated on defense, and with Gasol and Bynum in the middle, they can dominate the interior. They have outrebounded the Celtics throughout the series.
Paul Pierce and Ray Allen are critical as is Rondo, who is always critical. You got to throw KG in there as well. They all need to play well. If they do at the same time, the Celtics will win the title. The Celtics have to have this game.
I'm just not sure about this one. The Lakers have a lot of momentum from Tuesday, but the Celtics are resilient and have the most talented team when they are playing well. I'll go with the Celtics tonight, but barely. Think it will be a highly competitive, down to the wire contest.
8 p.m. on ABC.
(Paul Pierce has to step up; photo above.)