By Annie Jenkins
For this assignment, I watched the Comcast Sports Net television 10:00 p.m. eastern broadcast of the visiting Boston Celtics playing the Sacramento Kings on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. The Sacramento Kings are my hometown team, so I enjoyed listening to the announcers from a New England regional perspective.
BOSTON CELTICS DROP 109-101 DECISION TO SACRAMENTO KINGS
SACRAMENTO, Calif.– In their first game following All-Star Weekend, the Boston Celtics fell 109-101 on the road to the Sacramento Kings Friday night at Sleep Train Arena in the season debut for Kings’ head coach George Karl.
With the loss, the Celtics drop to 20-32 on the season, while the Kings improve to 19-34.
Boston opened up with a fast start, leading 16-2, four minutes into the game.
But, a major swing of momentum propelled the Kings on a 17-0 run. During that run, Sacramento converted 60 percent of field goal attempts.
Celtics’ power forward Tyler Zeller finished the first half with 17 points, as Boston headed into the break down 56-51.
With Boston’s leading scorer and rebounder, Jared Sullinger, out indefinitely with a stress fracture in his left foot, the Celtics had just 10 healthy players at their disposal tonight.
This injury news comes at a crucial time as the C’s are only 1.5 games behind in the race for the eighth and final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference.
Earlier in the season, Boston played a good game at home on New Year’s Eve (Dec. 31), and defeated the Kings by a final of 106-84.
This time around, not so lucky were those leprechauns.
Boston pulled to within 91-90 down the stretch, but after that, the Kings never looked back.
DeMarcus Cousins had 31 points and 15 rebounds in the win.
Avery Bradley (28 points), Zeller (22 points) and Brandon Bass (13 points, 10 rebounds) paced Boston’s scoring.
For this game, CSNNE broadcast play-by-play man Mike Gorman was paired with Brian Scalabrine, the color commentator for road games. Abby Chin served as a sideline reporter and Kyle Draper was the studio host. Draper was joined by Chris Mannix.
The announcers enhanced my enjoyment of watching the game. They had a clean broadcast, mixed in with personal commentary, and most of it was fair to be said on air. To improve their performance, my only critique would be to have Chris Mannix not say anything colorfully rude about the opponent.
During the Celtics’ Ace Ticket pregame show, Chris Mannix made a comment making fun of Sleep Train Arena, on how he thought that was a ridiculous name for an arena. I thought this comment was tasteless and did not belong on the broadcast. It added nothing to further the dissemination of information. Rude. Mannix also dissed the Kings’ halftime dancers.
Mike Gorman does a good job as the Celtics’ play-by-play man, for his words are informative. He is always letting the audience know which players are on the court at a given time. He has a good rhythm when it comes to speeding up and slowing down, depending on the pace of the game. Much like a broadcaster for a football game, Gorman calls out the movement of the ball, helping viewers and listeners follow the play as it happens.
Scalabrine was insightful with his analysis, such as providing tidbits like:
- “The Kings are on a 17-6 run”
- “The Celtics forced jump shots on their first four defensive possessions”
His opinionated color did not detract from his commentary. “Offensive rebounds are killing the Celtics” is subjective, but it was a truth of the game. Both Gorman and Scalabrine did a good job following the ball and providing insight on fouls.
Furthermore, speaking of foul commentary, more than once I heard the broadcast duo say,
- “I’ve never seen this before”
- “Cousins doesn’t like it, what else is new?”
- “Do you think if Cousins was nicer, he’d get more calls?”
Now, while these comments poke fun at the Kings’ Cousins, being engaged in the game is an important aspect of reporting what you see.
Other personnel notes:
- Tommy Heinsohn– former Celtics player, former Celtics coach and Hall of Famer is the color analyst for home games at TD Garden.
- The Kings are always the Celtics’ first opponent back from All-Star Weekend.
- Kevin Garnett was traded back to Minnesota Timberwolves on Feb. 19.