Al Horford takes a free throw ahead of Saturday night's game at FedExForum.
Pregame Post-Ups: C's Grinding Through Busiest Stretch of Season
Saturday, Dec. 16 - Celtics at Grizzlies
Pregame – C's Grinding Through Busiest Stretch of Season
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The Boston Celtics will wrap up their busiest calendar week of the season tonight in Memphis, as they are set to play their fifth game over a seven-day stretch.
It will already mark their 32nd contest of the season, which is two more games than any other team in the league has played to this point.
The reasoning behind Boston’s front-loaded schedule is because of next month’s trip to London. When the Celtics travel across the pond to play the Philadelphia 76ers on Jan. 11, it will be their only game over an eight-day span.
Celtics coach Brad Stevens, however doesn’t mind the consequences.
“It’s the schedule we have,” Stevens said ahead of tip-off at FedExForum. “We’re looking forward to playing every night that we have a chance to play.”
The coach understands that the London trip is a great opportunity for the organization, as it enables the team to spread its brand internationally. It also allows the players to appreciate how widespread their impact is.
“The London thing is something that, as a coach, that you look at it and you see the challenges that come along with it,” said Stevens. “But it’s a great experience for our players and a great experience for our organization. And certainly, the last time being in Madrid and Milan (during the 2015 preseason) kind of opened your eyes to the Celtics and the following overseas.”
As a result of the hectic schedule, Stevens has been open to the idea of resting some of his players. He allowed Al Horford to miss Wednesday’s game against the Denver Nuggets, and he may rest a few more players in the nights to come.
“It is what it is from a numbers standpoint with the amount of games right now, and we’re just going to keep playing them,” said Stevens. “Like we did earlier in the week, we might mix in some rest days for guys because it is the most unique part of our schedule for sure.”
By the time New Year’s Day rolls around, the Celtics will have played a whopping 16 games during the month of December. They will also be just one game shy of the halfway point of the campaign. The good news is that Boston will not have to play more than 13 games in any other month of the season.
In the meantime, the Celtics will continue to grind away, just like they plan to do tonight at “The Grindhouse” in Memphis.
- Taylor Snow