The Celtics (32-24) came up with another big win last night over the 76ers (29-27) as they won 103-79 in a game blew wide open in the second quarter. The Celtics had a balanced attack led by KG (20), Brandon Bass and Avery (18), and Pierce (17). Ray Allen came off the bench again and chipped in with 10 points on 4-9 shooting. Rajon Rondo had his 17th straight game with over 10 assists as he racked up 15 last night. The 76ers were led by Nikola Vucevic and Andre Iquodala who had 14 and 13 points. After Evan Turner exploded against the Celtics for 26 points earlier this season, they have held him to 16 points in the two games following.
Avery got the start over Ray for the second straight game, and had another solid start. He shot 6-12 from the field and made his only three. He also had 5 assists and 4 rebounds. It’s going to be interesting whether or not Doc ends up putting Ray back into the starting lineup in a few games or sticks with Avery. I’ve also heard that Pietrus may be in the mix to start when he comes back from his head injury but I find that very unlikely. In the past nine games Avery has started 8 of them. In the first quarter, when the starters play a majority of the minutes, the Celtics have given up 12, 15, 21, 20, 19, 27, 18, 19, and 22 points respectively. The only game he didn’t start was against the Spurs. The Celtics ended up giving up 27 points in that first quarter.
The Celtics take on the Heat tomorrow in Miami at 7 PM.
After winning five in a row after the Celtics didn’t seem to show up at all against the 76er’s. The Celtics were coming off two overtime games in a row and it clearly showed against the 76er’s. After starting out the game down 14-11. The 76er’s opened up the game with a 30-10 run off of turnovers and bad transition defense by the Celtics. During the run the Celtics shot 4-27 from the floor and were just missing easy open jumpers. The 76er’s were led by Evan Turner who turned his first start into 26 points on 11-19 shooting. He also grabbed 8 defensive rebounds and was huge in starting fast break after fast break for the 76er’s who ran the Celtics into the ground. The rest of the scoring for the 76ers was pretty even as Elton Brand had 18 and Lou Williams had 15.
The Celtics were led by Pierce with 16 and Garnett with 12, honestly not much to talk about the Celtics tonight. The offense was some of the worst that I had seen in the time with the big 3. The 33 first half points were the least, since Danny Ainge traded for Garnett and Ray Allen. I’m going to attribute this loss to some old legs playing a back-to-back after an overtime game.
The Celtics play the Blazers Friday night at the Garden at 7:30.
Celtics bench got a lot of play tonight, only Marquis Daniels played under 13 minutes for the bench as Doc played all 13 players; Ray Allen was 0-5 from the field and had his only 2 points from the line; Celtics only had 11 turnovers overall most of them coming during the run, and then 2 more by Marquis late; Tony Battie and Craig Brackins also started but only played 15 minutes total.
Avery Bradley Alert:
Avery had one big highlight of the night for the Celtics, stuffing Jrue Holiday’s last second shot to the ground and leading a fast break which ended up in the hands of Brandon Bass for the dunk. Other than that he was pretty quiet from the field shooting 2-3 and making both of his free throws for 6 points on the night. Lou Williams did put a fade away three right in Avery’s eye; I’m not sure how he could have played better defense, pretty great shot by Williams.