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Showing posts from December, 2021

The rising sun as Phoenix comes to Boston

           Rest in peace Sam Jones, an amazing player and very underrated! Memory Eternal!        1st Quarter       Marcus Smart coming out to ball. The Wolverine's game has grown exponentially. Watching Him nail that left hand floater gives us confidence that he can get to the hoop when we wants to. His passing skills are ascending in the right direction. Anyone who can't see the growth in his game this season is blind.        RWills maturation process is a joy to watch. He's turned himself into a player that can do just about anything needed.. He crashes the boards on both ends, he finds himself with bunnies down low. His passing needs a little work but it's getting there, his basketball IQ is strong!       2nd Quarter        JRich always impresses me, he plays hard D, and when called upon can knock down his shots. His three point shot is pretty reliable this season. His tweener game is my favorite. More minutes for him and things turn out well for the Boston Celtics

Losing games "the wrong way" needs to end for Celtics

  This will be short, but not quite so sweet! You can lose a game by playing the right way, but the Celtics 91-82 loss to the Clippers last night was wrong in so many ways - bringing up the question of what lies ahead. This loss hurts… We are going to be alright. Stay with us Celtics fans!☘️☘️☘️☘️ #together — Al Horford (@Al_Horford) December 30, 2021 Yes, we are staying with you, Al - all the way - but the Clippers zone defense was not the whole issue. Very often, Marcus Smart is the only Celtic fighting his way into the paint. Last night, Boston was 4-of-42 on 3-pointers. That's a whopping 9.5% from behind the arc and 34.7% from the field . Where was the penetration? Jaylen Brown was high-scorer for Boston with 30 points but ZERO assists. That seems a harsh reminder of the Antoine Walker days . Also, Brown was 1-of-13 from 3-point-land . WORST 3-POINT SHOOTING - CELTICS HISTORY (Minimum 20 attempts) 1-25 At Houston - Nov 1, 2014 1-21 Vs. New Jersey - Mar. 18, 2003 2-26 At Wa

Anyone for a Clip of some good Basketball tonight?

     It's time for some post holiday basketball!        1st Quarter       JB looking good! So far the Star of the team has been as advertised, hes getting to the hoop and getting his shot. Question is can he carry this team to a win? This writer hopes so. JB needs to learn how to finish games like the greats tend to do. He needs to be a closer when JT is not around.        Lack of D, where is it?        Tonight's D has a lot to improve on. It's been very lackluster to start. Not sure if the Celtics are still hung over after that slap to the face loss to the wolves. The Clippers are looking like all stars out there.        2nd Quarter       Defense starting to pick up finally, switches are being made effortlessly, active hands and overall great communication seems to be spurring the Celtics this quarter. Defense wins games and at this point we just need wins.      GWill is leading the league in corner threes, did anyone ever think they would think that? This writer didn'

It's Game Night! There's a Wolf in Sheep's Jerseys out there

          1st Quarter       Robert Williams Continues his growth        RWill continues his maturation, it is truly something that we should embrace. The way his game has elevated is a true joy for Celtics fans. Every year every season he grows into a true basketball big. Honestly when we drafted him I was pumped and he has not disappointed.        Al being back brings comfort         Isn't it nice to have the steady comfort of Al being back in the line up. Als play this year has been spectacular! He seems like a young 35 at this point. He's setting great screens, fighting for rebounds, and passing the ball like a pro. On the offensive end he's getting to the hoop, he's posting up, and hitting threes. Gotta love Al!       Overall not very pleased with how this game is evolving. Both teams seem to be playing at a mediocre level. This needs to be a JB or PP game with a sprinkle of Crash 3Smith.      2nd Quarter       When Payton Pritchard gets minutes - he produces      

It's Payton Pritchard time - set The Rabbit free!

  What does Payton Pritchard have to do to get consistent floor time this season. As a rookie last season, he played with the confidence and poise of a veteran , but this year his minutes have been limited - partially by the addition of Dennis Schroder . Things should change fast heading towards the NBA Trade Deadline date of February 10, 2022. Schroder has proven himself. averaging 16.3 PPG, 3.4 RPG and 4.7 APG this season . Trading him prior to the deadline seems close to a certainty. In the last four games, P-Squared has seen elevated minutes (25.3 MPG), and his production has risen. In that span, he is averaging 13.3 PPG, 4.0 RPG and 2.8 APG. Per-36 minutes, those numbers rise to 18.9 PPG, 5.7 RPG and 4.0 APG - all while hitting 52% from the field and 48% beyond the arc.   Let the rabbit run. Set him free! Who doesn't think that this intense and active sharpshooter can't help the cause with more floor time?

Celtics lack "Finals-MVP-Caliber" guy - so far

  The Celtics had the game in their pocket versus the Milwaukee Bucks on Christmas Day , but it was the most-recent Finals MVP Award winner, Giannis Antetokounmpo , that made sure Boston didn't leave with the win. The Celtics just don't seem to have that player with the intensity to figuratively stick that dagger into the heart of an opponent and maybe twist it a bit . Bill Russell never won that specific award because it didn't exist until his last season (1968-69) in the League - and Jerry West took the award that year even though his Lakers lost to Boston in the Finals . "The Logo" was that good. But the prize is now known for Russ, an intense competitor who possessed that "killer instinct". Larry Bird took the Finals MVP Trophy twice - Paul Pierce won one of them - and even the often-dismissed Cedric Maxwell grabbed one . All three gave "no quarter" . No Quarter (definition): No pity or mercy I view Jayson Tatum as a transcendent player

Christmas Day in Milwaukee with the Greek

      If Everyday Could Be Like Christmas, what a wonderful world it would be! It's the Greek vs JT! It's Middleton vs JB! It's Celtics Bucks, let's get it sports fans!        1st Quarter        The Wolverine is dealing, finding RWill for a lob city hammer! He also found JB getting to the rack. As much as some fans give him crap, his distribution skills have gotten so much better. He's looking pass first, instead of shooting first. He's matured so much on D. Gotta love it!        JBs tweener game has been something to marvel at. He's deadly from three on occasion, but driving and that tweener midrange game are huge assets . Isn't it nice to have him back and healthy. This writer feels his upside is the sky's the limit. He and JT will lead us to the playoffs.       2nd Quarter        JT when in the flow of the offense can be deadly from three as we saw off the pass from PP. Whenever he's patient, the offense comes to him and he generally delive

The Max Factor: How good was Cedric Maxwell

 Received Cedric Maxwell's book as one of my Christmas gifts, and it brought back memories of his time in Boston. Let me say this - I really enjoyed watching him play. We hear the nickname, Cornbread , a lot connected to Max, but I always liked the moniker, Rubber Band Man . It clearly described his resilient, wiggle-his-way-to-the-hoop-maneuver for a layup or a foul. Kevin McHale may have had better footwork close to the basket, but The Rubber Band Man was adept at getting a short-range shot up, with or without being fouled. @cedricmaxwell81 We never hear your nickname, Rubber Band Man, anymore. It all had to do with your resilient, flexible maneuvering under the hoop, getting the layup or picking up a foul. One of the best at it I have ever seen. — Tom Lane (@CelticsSentinel) September 19, 2020   Maxwell may have peaked too soon . The 1978-79 season , his second in the NBA, may have been his most-productive season stats-wise. For a full season, he led the Celtics in points (1

Who wants an award? Here at the Sentinel we like giving them out.

      A short roster, against a team with a good record. Recipe for disaster, I think not. In a game that saw the return of Joe Johnson, a depleted Celtics team best the Cavs. In every game we always see a player stand out. Can you guess who?           As you can see we decided that RWill was our Celtics Sentinel Citation Award Winner! A career high 21 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists and 2 steals and 2 blocks! Every game and every year we see this young man improve! 

One-too-many "Joes" in the 2001 draft, and Joe Johnson, we hardly knew ya

 Sorry to bring this up, but seeing Joe Johnson on the court last night in Boston's win over the Cavaliers brought back some "what ifs" . For the most part, it was the 2001 NBA draft and subsequent trade of then-rookie, "Iso Joe" , that is troublesome. In that draft, GM Chris Wallace took Joe at #10 in the first round - Kedrick Brown at #11 - and Joseph Forte at #21 . Frankly, that turned out to be one-too-many "Joes" for the Celtics. Tony Parker was taken at #28 by the Spurs, seven spots after the choice of Forte . Johnson only did a half-year stint in Beantown before being traded by Wallace, and he went on to star in the NBA, earning seven All-Star nods . The rumble around the league was that Phoenix would have taken Kedrick Brown in the deal, instead of Joe Johnson . And Boston could have had Tony Parker instead of "the other Joe". WHAT IF??

"Redundant" argument against Jay Team is ridiculous

  REDUNDANT (definition):  repeating something else and therefore unnecessary  That's the argument posed by some analysts for the Celtics not to retain both Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown . "They have redundant skills" these misguided individuals may propose as a reason to split the Jay Team up. I say - if their skills are redundant, then give me more redundancy. Here's my argument. The Celtics took the game away from the Cleveland Cavaliers last night by a final score of 111-101. The team, win or lose, seems to be trending in the right direction - playing as a team . Here is the redundancy of which I write (from last night): Jaylen Brown: 34 points - 6 boards - 3 assists - 1 steal - 1 block Jayson Tatum: 18 points, 9 boards - 5 assists - 2 steals - 1 block Brown was a perfect 5-of-5 from the free throw line , and T atum was 4-of-4 at the line. Another example of " repeating" each other's production - which any analyst understands is "therefore

With Jaylen Brown in a groove, Celtics victorious over Cleveland, 111-101

        1st Quarter        JB came out like he was shot out of a cannon tonight . His threes were silky smooth. When he is on he's hard to contain. He's like a video game out there , to the point where you can't stop him . Any of our knowledgeable Celtics fans recognize how important he is to this team? This writer does. He kept our offense rolling with his 16 early points.       What is with these Celtics uniforms? They may be playing well as a unit so far tonight but damn those jerseys need to be thrown in a dumpster. What's happened to the days where it was just the simple home and away uniforms? Simplicity is a good thing, Way to many different uniforms for my liking.   Celtics lead 31-26 off some decent shooting by the Celtics led by JB and his 16 points.       2nd Quarter        First offensive possession of the first resulted in a PP three! All Celtics fans should hope that his minutes continue to increase throughout the season. If they do this writer predicts th

When did the beautiful game of basketball change?!

       When did standing around the three point line become a thing in the NBA? Watching today's modern game and our Celtics, sometimes I just shake my head. While the Celtics played very well vs the Warriors, all I can see are multiple players just hanging out around the three point line having a cup of coffee.       How can you generate an offense by doing that? It really boggles my mind. I recall the days of when the ball would move and in a way that brought joy to those who watched. Anyone who saw Bird, Magic and Jordan can say they changed the game in a great way.       Bird and those Celtics teams moved the ball with pace, grace and beauty . They always came out with the best possible shot. On the fast break they would end up with points in the paint. Not like today where you have a three-on-one and someone jacks up a three . That ERA of ball brought out the epitome of what Dr Naismith invented. Basketball is a simple game that when played right is true poetry in motion.   

My Celtics core and keepers - feel free to disagree

 The Celtics have completed 38 % of their season and sit with a record of 15-16 . I have seen enough to post what I consider the core-trio and a few guys that, barring a significant trade, need to be retained. Feel free to disagree . It all starts with Jayson Tatum . Chosen as Eastern Conference Player of the Week , it was no coincidence that Jayson also ignited the Play of the Game against the 76'ers, saving the ball from going out of bounds and getting it to Jaylen Brown - who in turn lobbed it to Marcus Smart for the jam. Coach Udoka says he sent Jayson Tatum a text the other night to let him know how much he appreciates the work JT has put in: “He’s pretty much carried the load for us all year.” — Boston Celtics (@celtics) December 20, 2021 Yes, that is my core-trio. Jayson has carried the team on his back this season . Brown was high-scorer for Boston with 30 points , and forget the noise about the Jay Teams' skills being redundant. Give me more of that redundancy.

Despite much-depleted roster, Celtics come close vs. 76'ers, losing 108-103

        1st Quarter        Sluggish start for the good guys in green and white, want to know a good thing? Seeing JT getting to the rim and dropping the hammer. JTs willingness to get to the hoop over threes lately has been great to see. The more that young man drives the better this team plays.       Wolverine aka Marcus Smart with yet another steal for two. Smarts D has been very impressive lately. He truly deserves consideration for defensive player of the year. His overall effort on a regular basis is something to be admired.       2nd Quarter        PP sees the floor in a very basketball savvy way. The more we see him on the the floor the better he gets. If he becomes the regular back up point guard we will see him get even better. He makes the right passes at the right time. He just has that knack to get the O going.       Aaron Crash 3Smith is another guy who with more playing time shows us he can make big plays. He's even willing to do the little things as well. If he can t

Josh Richardson is our Sentinel Citation Award winner with standout performance vs. Knicks

      Friday nights game gave us insight into how hard this team can work and play when their backs are against the wall. Covid shrunk their roster, yet their play was not diminished. One player shined in a way that is well deserving of our highly esteemed award.      DrumRoll Please...     Josh Richardson was just en Fuego! In 32 minutes he scored 27 points, had 5 rebounds and 4 assists. Defensively he was hounding the Knicks, his energy, grit and effort were second to none. If he can do half of that on a nightly basis, that's a huge weapon . Get him in the post season and anything can happen. He could be a part of the Jays, if need be! 

Aaron Nesmith an "unknown quantity" for Celtics - not so Payton Pritchard

 Where does Celtics sophomore, Aaron Nesmith , fit with Boston - or does he at all. Has his shot deserted him , or is it just diminished minutes that have caused his accuracy to fade this season? We know what we have with the other youngsters. Grant Williams worked hard on his body and his game and has earned in spot in the regular rotation. Payton Pritchard also belongs in that rotation and may get there if Dennis Schroder is dealt prior to the deadline and Coach Udoka doesn't keep Payton glued to the bench. Romeo Langford? I have placed him in the "fragile" category until he proves otherwise . He just can't seem to remain on the court and has a massive injury history dating back to his college days. Back to ThreeSmith . His minutes have faded from 14.5 MPG in his rookie season to 10.8 MPG this year. His stats have also taken a hit, but the drop in shooting percentages is glaring. Aaron shot 44% on field goals and 37% on 3-pointers last season, and those numbers

Released from the bench by COVID surge, Payton Pritchard has a resurgence

  Payton Pritchard's minutes have almost been cut in half from the 19.2 MPG he saw in his rookie campaign. I have been among the many Celtics fans wondering why, after such a promising start to his NBA career, the 6'1" point guard has only averaged 10.1 minutes per game this season . But with Boston facing the Knicks with a COVID-ravaged crew , Pritchard was released from captivity and made the most of it. He was on the floor for 28 minutes - scored 16 points on 6-of-10 from the field and 4-of-7 on treys - added three rebounds, three assists and one block . He was also active on defense, often covering the red-hot Kemba Walker full-court in an attempt to slow him down. On offense, we know Payton can hit from anywhere, but it was his bank shot that brought back memories of the superb marksman, Sam Jones. With Boston needing more scoring from the bench, both Josh Richardson (team-high 27 points, 64% FG) and Pritchard may need to see more time on the floor. Both subs push

The Late Great Frank Sinatra Sang about New York. Tonight the Celtics take on the Knicks.

           Start spreading the news! The Celtics are winning today! I've got to be a part of it! In Boston Garden!        1st Quarter        We saw both JB and JT get going early nailing some triples, each player missed one. Well you know that they did next possession, they drove to the HOOP! While today's NBA player gets fixated on the three, credit is due to these two young fellas for maturing and getting to the basket. Why basketball has moved farther away from the hoop makes no sense to me.      JRich is just a very smooth player out there on the floor. His ability to make plays look effortless are a huge asset. He's a tweener guy who not only gets to the hoop, but took some midrange shots as well with ease. His defensive effort is second to none when he's locked in. JRich can be an x factor come playoff time. Expect him to come up big the rest of the game. Celtics lead 32-18 plus we had the pleasure of watching both Crash and PP hit the court.      2nd Quarter   

The Wolverine of Causeway Street gets our Award, even in a loss. Here's why!

 Despite the 111-107 loss to the League leading Golden State Warriors (.828, 24-5 record), this was a fun game to watch . CelticsSentinel normally doesn't give out its player award in a defeat, but we felt it necessary in this case. The Sentinel Citation Award goes to the "Wolverine of Causeway Street", Marcus Smart - and here's why. Tommy Heinsohn used to call them "high school rebounds" - meaning a non-traffic, easy catch off the boards. But at the 10:07 mark of the third quarter, this wasn't one of those Marcus Smart casually out-jumping a center by a mile on a jump ball — Taylor Snow (@taylorcsnow) December 18, 2021 . It was 6'3" Smart versus 6'9" Kevin Looney for possession of the missed shot, and Marcus fought like hell for it - ending in a jump ball. Smart won the jump, tapping the ball to a breaking Jayson Tatum for the slam. The Wolverine takes no plays off. Marcus has become selfless . As Bosto

Short-handed Celtics fight-but-fall to Warriors, 111-107

      Covid, short bench, short roster, what is a team to do?        1st Quarter              First quarter thoughts, on a night where a majority of your roster is out what is the plan? Well overall this Celtics team came out and gave some decent effort to start. As a group they started off slow yet kept the first pretty competitive. Though they did not have the lead they played pretty well.        Steph Curry is a man among boys. With that said, the Celtics offensive sets are terrible , They all hang out by the three point line. GO TO The HOOP! What has this game become? It's not the beautiful game that Larry showed us it could be.        2nd Quarter        They had moments of quality play during the second, yet it did not lead to being ahead on the score board. Ball movement was decent but shots didn't fall. Defensively they had some decent effort yet just couldn't stop the Warriors from doing what they wanted to .        Celtics fans need to realize that JB and JT are

Grant Williams becoming a fan-favorite in Boston

 It was the altercation with Milwaukee's Bobby Portis that sealed it for me. A year ago, I wrote that Grant Williams - not long, not athletic - would have a long NBA career: The height and athleticism may be lacking, but Grant Williams has poise, maturity, skills and one terrific attitude. .He showed he can become that "threatening spot up shooter" that was potentially projected for him . Than his body and game improved. This season, he is hitting . 511 on field goals, ..453 on 3-pointers and .867 from the foul line . Grant has morphed into the "threatening spot-up shooter" projected for him. Bobby Portis just threw Grant Williams on the ground — Taylor Snow (@taylorcsnow) December 14, 2021 But there's more. I replayed the video/tweet from Taylor Snow repeatedly. My Initial take was that GWill was backing Bobby Portis out of rebounding position, but closer examination definitely shows Porter locking arms with Grant and throwing

Envelope Please!

     After an atrocious road trip you come back to the confines of the Garden and face the champion Bucks. Talk about a tall task, and yet this team came out to play! Why can't they do this all the time? Holding The Greek to pedestrian numbers, while your star gets 42.       With that said we present JT!      JT did what a star is supposed to do last night. In 38 minutes he scored 42 points, had 5 boards, 4 assists, and 3 steals.  His field goal percentage was 64 percent from the field. Three point shooting was 54 percent. His willingness to get to the hoop and not force to many three's was great. He had one drive on local guy PC that just looked like poetry in motion on the court. If he does more of that the wins will pile up for this team. With that said he's our Sentinel Citation Award Winner!      We do have an honorable mention!       And it's GWill! Loved his heart and willingness to get physical with Bobby Portis. Give me that anger on the court when someone does

With Jay Team back together, Celtics take out the Bucks 117-103

      Opa! It's Greek Heritage Night in Boston! Put your dancing shoes on, eat some lamb, and have a shot of Ouzo!      1st Quarter        Why don't we always see this energy       What we are getting right now in the the first is what we deserve as fans every game. Ball movement, crisp passes, and hitting their shots. JBs presence has been huge. He and JT can build off of and be a one two punch out there. One that can knockout the opponent. Watching Smart and RWill hooking up on oops is beautiful out there.        Defense seems like it's ready to play       So far we see active hands and hands in the face as shots are going up. Whenever you play the defending world champ you better play hard D. Competitiveness and effort are the keys to good D. Hunger, and wanting to stop your opponent need to drive this defense. There have been lapses but this Bucks team is a well oiled machine.  Celtics do trail 30-21 after the first, these Bucks are going to get tougher as the game gets

Is Kevin Durant too-high a ceiling-projection for Jayson Tatum?

 Referring to my title question, I thought projecting Jayson Tatum into Kevin Durant territory , particularly after Kevin's explosion last night (51 points, 7 rebounds, 9 assists), was pure fantasy . Then I checked their fifth-season stats : Durant: 28.0 PPG - 8.0 RPG - 3.5 APG - 1.3 SPG - 1.2 BPG Tatum:  25.6 PPG - 8.7 RPG - 3.6 APG - 1.1 SPG - 0.7 BPG The difference comes in their shooting percentages . In his fifth season, Durant hit 50% of his field goals and 39% of his treys . Tatum this season? He registers at 41% from the field and 33% from 3-point land. The shooting-efficiency numbers for Boston's star have started to rise. Improved offensive efficiency and honing of his point guard skills - a la Kevin Durant - would benefit Tatum's standing in the League and his team's fortunes going forward. Another major test for Tatum comes tonight when the 10th-place (Eastern Conference) Celtics take on the 2nd-place Bucks. Jaylen Brown is due back on the court , so less

Celtics moving forward - Tank, trade or tough-it-out?

 With the Celtics mired in mediocrity with a 13-14 record ( roughly one-third of the regular season in the rear-view mirror ), something needs to change. That's a 27-game sample , enough to know that this team, as it stands roster-wise and strategy-wise, is not a Title contender .  So what happens going forward? Purposeful tanking didn't work on Philadelphia , and the same goes for Boston. Besides, Beantown fans are spoiled. E ven hope for landing a future star in the June draft would not offer enough compensation for sinking into the abyss . But an argument can be made that - if the Celtics are going to lose more games than they win - play the kids. See what they can accomplish with consistent floor time . The Suns took care of the Celtics last night, sending them to a 13-14 record. @JakeLFischer tells @BGeltzNBA and @SamMitchellNBA why he thinks some big roster changes could be on the way in Boston. — SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) December 1

The Land of the Sun, thoughts on a night in Phoenix

     A wounded Suns team, needs to be handled tonight with a strong win.         1st Quarter       J T Looks Ready To Roll      Didn't a certain guy want to play in Phoenix prior to the draft?! I believe it was JT. So far tonight he seems active and energized. Knocking down shots, getting to the hoop and playing some good basketball. Despite his early struggles this season he's back. For those on talk radio who give him crap, please be quiet! This kid is special!        Decent D Better Offense       While the D was decent, it didn't scream out saying we are here to play and make life miserable for you. If they can then tonight could be a nice win. Offensively the ball was moving and guys were hitting their shots. The only question I have is can they keep it going. Celtics trail 25-24, if they can come out in the second and play hard D they can put the Sun's to bed early.      2nd Quarter        Lack of hustle and energy       When your entire team gets out hustled and o

Why Celtics are cautious with Jaylen Brown's hamstring issue

 I have dealt with many hamstring issues as a Personal Trainer, and f or the 'average Joe", they can be bothersome - but not a big deal. Not so for pro athletes. On his weekly appearance with @929TheGame this morning, Hawks GM Travis Schlenk says an MRI showed Solomon Hill tore his hamstring off the bone, and will be out quite a while — Mike Conti (@MikeConti929) December 7, 2021 Sports Illustrated described the injury to Hill as 'gruesome" - with the hamstring tendon being pulled off the bone . This is a graphic representation of why Ime Udoka and the Celtics staff are being so cautious with Jaylen Brown's  issue. Following surgery, Solomon is expected to miss the remainder of the season . Bringing Jaylen back for major minutes too soon could prove catastrophic for Brown - the Celtics - and this season. Caution and patience with the Celtics' SG/SF is the correct course going forward.

Another Late Night In LA - Are the Hollywood lights too bright for our shooters?

      No George, No Leonard, No Problem??? Another late game in LA vs the other team out there.        1st Quarter       Have we heard this before? Drive The Ball       Watching this first quarter, we see how well the Celtics can get to the hoop. Why don't do they it more often? Smarts ability to get there and dish is very solid, DS is lightning quick and generally scores. JRich even took his turn yet missed. Today's game is driven by the three, but this teams bread and butter should be going to the hoop. Romeo was listening and went hard a few times.        Turnovers will hurt you       We saw some decent offense in the first, for a team on the second night of a back to back we shouldn't complain. The turnovers however deserve the complaints. To win this game, being sloppy isn't going to do it. We needs crisp passing, strong drives, and good shots taken. Protect the ball!!! Celtics lead 28-24, despite some sloppy play the lead is ours.        2nd Quarter       Old Scho