By Tyler Sullivan. Follow on Twitter @TylerSully
The Celtics are undefeated no more. The preseason juggernauts fell to the New York Knicks at MSG 101-95. Good thing that it’s only preseason.
Still, there were some concerning aspects to the C’s loss.
The most glaring is the 18 offensive rebounds that the Knicks were able to rack up. Celtics had 11 offensive boards to their credit, but New York had theirs went the game was more in doubt.
Brad Stevens mixed up his starting rotation yet again with Amir Johnson and David Lee in his latest merry-go-round of bigs. Together they were 5 of 13 from the floor and racked up just 8 rebounds.
Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley and Jae Crowder were the other starters with Marcus Smart (illness) and Terry Rozier (knee) out.
Thomas led the Celtics in minutes (24) and points (13). He was perfect beyond the arc (2-2) and facilitated the offense with five assists.
R.J. Hunter continued to impress in his first few games as a pro. He saw some minutes at the point guard position due to the teams lack of depth on the night and had an “ok” performance according to Stevens. Hunter had the most minutes off the bench (21) and was 2-4 from three point land.
It wasn’t all pretty for the rookie though, he started to fall off later in the game and got his “Welcome to the NBA” moment by Derrick Williams.
In the third quarter things got a little chippy with Kyle O’Quinn getting the flagrant foul on Jared Sullinger.
Brad Stevens also received his second technical foul of his NBA career after Cleanthony Early got a little too close to Tyler Zeller after a fast-break dunk.
Jared Sullinger continues to struggles for the Celtics. He did not play in the first quarter and played deep into the fourth (that’s not a good sign). He finished his night with 5 points and 10 rebounds.
Looking at the Knicks, they looked far improved from last season. If Kristaps Porzingis can get healthy and the pieces around Carmelo Anthony look like they did tonight, they should be a decent team.
The Celtics are back at the TD Garden on Monday when they take on the Brooklyn Nets.