Al Horford was still a no-go for tonight’s game, and boy could the Celtics have used him. The Boston Celtics lost a close one to the Pelicans, giving them their first home win of the season. Late game execution was a big key. Anthony Davis was able to draw a foul late in the fourth on Kelly Olynyk, and made a pair of free throws that helped his team win.

Rim Protection

Anthony Davis and the Pelicans blocked 4 shots in this game. The Pelicans also altered countless others. The rim protection of the Pelicans showed up, and the Celtics were largely unable to deter dribble penetration or protect the rim.

Isaiah Thomas

Despite the loss, Isaiah Thomas was an absolute monster.

At one point Thomas had 34 points in 34 minutes, and ended up finishing with 37 points and 7 assists. He caused some havoc, even on the defensive end late in the game. And as usual his ability to draw fouls and get other teams in the bonus gets points not only for himself, but a handful of other Celtics as well. (Kelly Olynyk benefit from that effect a bit tonight. )

The Celtics lost, but that was despite Thomas’ effort. Not because of it. Oh, and he got demolished on the last play of the game and should’ve drawn yet another foul, but the refs swallowed their whistles. No big deal.

Avery Bradley

Avery is making a case to be considered the Celtics second best player. Even after Horford comes back. Avery had 19 points and 10 rebounds. It was his clutch shooting, and newfound ability to create for himself that was more noticeable in this game. His defense was also a big part of the Celtics near-comeback.

Unfortunate Loss

It absolutely stinks to lose a game in this fashion. Pardon my non-scientific language. But it does. The Celtics made several errors, and their late game execution was poor. They also dug themselves into a bigger hole than they should’ve allowed.

Still they showed a lot of heart during their comeback. To lose a 1 point game on the road, without 2 of your 4 best players, is tough. They have to swallow this one, forget about it, and get back to work on improving their defense and rebounding.