By Tyler Sullivan Follow on Twitter @TylerSully
The Celtics are one of the scrappiest, toughest and most defensively sound teams in the NBA. When they show up.
Tonight Brad Stevens’ crew seemed to sleep walk into the Barclays Center and it showed on the scoreboard with the final score 111-101 in the Nets favor.
“Brooklyn outplayed us. I’ve said this before and I truly believe this: what happened yesterday has no bearing on today,” said Celtics head coach Brad Stevens.
The Celtics were the aggressors in Friday’s matchup between these two clubs, but Brooklyn came out firing in the first half of Sundays matchup outscoring the C’s 26-10 in the paint and led by as much as 22 points.
The Celtics mounted a comeback in the second half and got it down to single digits, but couldn’t get all the way there.
- This loss hurts twice as much due to the draft pick implications. Boston will obviously bounce back from the loss, however one win can be all the difference in the NBA lottery. Just as an example (not comparing players just draft positions), in 2014 the Utah Jazz and Boston Celtics had identical records and the decision was decided by the flip of the coin. Celtics were on the wrong side of that and got the 6th pick instead of the 5th. Boston, if you recall, had a Jeff Green buzzer beating win over the Miami Heat in a game they had no business being in.
- Marcus Smart did not play in this matchup and according to Brad Stevens is going to be out “a couple of weeks-plus” with a Subluxation of the proximal tib-fib joint.
- With Smart out, Avery Bradley was inserted into the starting line-up. He finished the night tied with Isaiah Thomas for a team high 27 points. He also was a major force in sparking the comeback in the second half.
- At the 1:41 mark in the fourth quarter, Jae Crowder hit a three in the corner that would have brought the Celtics within five, but a foul was called because he kicked his leg out in the follow through.