The Celtics found themselves down 20, 81 to 61 to be exact, mid-way through the third quarter. However, thanks to some solid play from Marcus Smart and Jonas Jerebko, they found themselves within 3 with less than 3 minutes to go in the fourth. This game was a chippy, physical, hard-fought game. The Cavaliers were able to thwart the C’s comeback attempt however, and won 124 to 118. Isaiah Thomas and Avery Bradley were both excellent in the losing effort. Jae Crowder played a solid if unspectacular game, but missed a late 3 that could have put the Celtics up by 1.
The Celtics make a furious 4Q comeback but fall 124-118 to the Cavs. Isaiah Thomas notched 31 points and 9 asts, and Avery Bradley scored 23 – Boston Celtics (@celtics) December 30, 2016
Isaiah Thomas is Great
Isaiah Thomas scored 31 points and dished out 9 assists. Thomas was 8-13 from the field and recorded 2 steals. Isaiah was forced to carry a heavy offensive load, especially when the Celtics were struggling in the third quarter. Thomas was constantly doubled and trapped off of pick and rolls as well.
Two things are increasingly apparent as the Celtics play teams like Memphis and Cleveland that have great defenses and length in the back-court.
- Thomas is a great player
- The Celtics need to get him elite scoring help
Al Horford is Struggling
Al Horford is in a slump offensively.
Horford finished with only 6 points, and got the ball taken from him on a clean strip by LeBron James on the final possession. (The Celtics were down 4 with 8 seconds left, so not sure it would’ve mattered if Al could have created something. )
Horford has been cold from three lately, and his inside offensive game hasn’t exactly been lights out either.
Brad Stevens needs to find a way to get Horford back into a rhythm, as the Celtics are much more dangerous offensively when he is on his game. Even if it means forcing him the ball in the post and suffering through a handful of misses. Even if it loses you a game, it may win you a bunch more later.
Celtics Execute Another Near-Comeback Against Elite Team But Ultimately Lose
This is the story of the season thus far for the Celtics.
Playing a great teamGet down a million
Fight your balls off back to within 1
Execute like crap in the final minute
Your Boston Celtics
– Michael Dyer (@Mike_Dyer13) December 30, 2016
The problem with this is, a great fourth quarter like the Celtics played in this game should have them winning by 10. But the Celtics did not play well defensively, at all, through the first three-quarters. If they had the Boston sports world is talking about a big signature win now.
Stevens: We weren’t connected or locked in defensively in my opinion.- Jay King (@ByJayKing) December 30, 2016
B2B Against the Heat
The Celtics finish up the back to back against the Miami Heat in Boston tomorrow night at 7:30 PM.