When analyzing a loss, it’s a lot harder to come up with a key moment. Do you pick out the point at which the game got away? What if the game was never in question? Or, what if a near-rally is cut short? What if the Celtics had cranked up their defensive intensity much earlier than they did?
Losses are full of “what ifs”, and Friday’s defeat at the hands of the Sixers was no different. The Celtics, now 2-3, are looking for a lot of answers after a 106-100 loss at TD Garden that wasn’t really as close as the final tally would suggest.
But in terms of Key Moments, we’re going to say the Key Moment(s) were the 17 minutes that Kevin Garnett was off the floor. Not just because the stat sheet lists KG as a -2 (which qualified as a good performance for a Celtic in this particular contest) but because postgame, Doc Rivers made a point of noting that he needs to figure out how to get his team to play at a high level on both ends of the floor when the Big Ticket is on the bench.
But Doc’s other beef with the performance tonight was the Celtics’ poor transition defense. “They just beat us down the floor and attacked,” Rivers said.
Key Box Score Line
There were quite a few interesting box score lines on Friday night, and two of the best belonged to Evan Turner and Jrue Holiday, who combined to drop 46 points, 15 rebounds and 18 assists. That said, If you want to read about the Sixers, you’re probably on the wrong website.
Kidding aside, Rajon Rondo had an impressive night distributing the basketball, handing out a season-high 20 assists. His double-digit assist streak (now at 29 games and counting) marches on, and any time a point guard drops $2 in dimes on the court, it’s considered noteworthy.
Box Score Nuggets
- Every Celtic who played in Friday’s contest registered at least 2 points.
- Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo each notched double-doubles.
- Garnett led the game in points (20), rebounds (13) and blocks (two).
- The Sixers scored 56 poinst in the paint, while the Celtics scored 38 points in the key on 38 shots in the area.
- The Sixers scored 26 fast break points, a number which Doc Rivers implied was under-rerported in his postgame remarks.
- Jeff Green, Jason Terry and Leandro Barbosa combined to shoot 3-for-7, each connecting on one shot apiece.
- The Sixers shot 48.8% on field goals. The Celtics shot 48.7%.
- Thaddeus Young blocked three shots for Philadelphia.
- The Celtics and Sixers will play a home-and-home set in mid-December.
Quote of the Night
It’s a dilemma, but he’s going to be a good player for us this year. And sooner or later I’m hoping; we’ve just got to unlock him. Right now he’s just absolutely frustrated; you can see it in his play. But that’s on all of us; it’s not just on Jeff. Jeff’s the easy target right now. Jeff’s part of this team, just like everyone else. And we have to do a better job of getting him going. He’s probably got to do a better job of getting himself going. Doc Rivers on Jeff Green