Kevin Garnett Again Dominates Chris Bosh, Boding Well for Celtics in Possible Playoff Matchup


Kevin Garnett Again Dominates Chris Bosh, Boding Well for Celtics in Possible Playoff MatchupAs a symbol of what has made Kevin Garnett so great, there was no moment more instructive than one that came midway through the fourth quarter on Tuesday.

Chris Bosh sealed off Garnett in the post, received a pass from Dwyane Wade and scored a simple layup. Garnett grabbed the ball out of the net and angrily bumped the ball against his head before inbounding it to Rajon Rondo, muttering to himself as he made his way back up the floor.

The fact that Bosh's shot did little to cut into the Celtics' double-digit lead and only accounted for two of Bosh's 13 points in the game did not seem to register with Garnett. As far as Garnett was concerned, the other team should never score, particularly when Bosh is the one doing the scoring.

In a game filled with impressive performances, Garnett's utter domination of Bosh may have been the most indicative of how the Celtics have transformed since they met the Heat in the second game of the season. Bosh shot 5-for-13 from the field Tuesday, barely cracking the box score for the second straight game against the Celtics. Since Bosh scored 18 points in a Heat victory over the Celtics on Dec. 27, he is 7-for-23 from the field against Boston.

Taking Bosh out of the equation is a massive gain for the Celtics. Bosh can seem disinterested or out of sync with Miami's offense on many nights, but he usually can still be counted on to hit a few medium-range jump shots to help spread the floor. Against Garnett, Bosh cannot manage even that.

Bosh, a deadly shooter for a forward from 15 to 19 feet, has completely lost that aspect of his arsenal when matched up against Garnett. Bosh is shooting 14 percent on such shots this season in three games against the Celtics when Garnett is on the floor. He is a 40 percent shooter from that distance overall. Bosh led the Heat with nine fourth-quarter points on Tuesday, but two of his three baskets in the quarter came from point-blank range.

And at the other end of the court? Garnett has done nothing but be demoralizingly good against Bosh. Garnett is a knockdown shooter against anyone, but against Bosh, he pretty much does not miss. Garnett has shot a blistering 70 percent from 12 to 24 feet when Bosh, known as a versatile frontcourt defensive player, has been on the floor. Garnett's four straight jumpers in the fourth quarter on Tuesday helped snuff a potential Heat comeback, and he added a fadeaway over Bosh's futilely outstretched arm to punctuate the Celtics' victory.

Garnett will be the first to remind everyone that basketball is not an individual game. Greg Stiemsma and Brandon Bass spent time covering Bosh on Tuesday, even when Garnett was on the floor. The Celtics' defensive system is structured in such a way that just because an opposing player scores, it does not mean the Celtics’ player at the same position was the one responsible for the breakdown.

Bosh does not necessarily see that, though. All Bosh has to know is that when No. 5 in green is on the court, he can't seem to buy a bucket. If somehow these teams meet in a best-of-seven series, that could be a tall mental hurdle for Bosh to overcome.

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