Pregame Post-Ups: Stevens Gives Thumbs Up to Same-City Sets

Friday, January 22 - Celtics at 76ers

Pregame – Brad Stevens Gives Rave Review on Same-City Sets

The Boston Celtics have had a unique travel schedule so far this season in that 75 percent of their road games have been a part of same-city sets.

Their first two road games were played back-to-back in Indiana. Their next two away contests were of the same fashion in Detroit. They then knocked out a couple of Florida games in Tampa Bay and Miami. And now, they’re in the midst of their third single-location miniseries in Philadelphia.

So, to recap: eight road games in five cities and four states.

Typically, Boston’s road trips would take the team all over the map, but the NBA devised its 2020-21 schedule in such a way in order to minimize travel as much as possible amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

In doing so, it has created a completely new road dynamic, of which Celtics coach Brad Stevens is a fan.

“I would say I'm all for it,” Stevens said Friday evening ahead of his team’s second game in Philadelphia in the last three days. “I think it's great. It makes so much more sense to stay in one city, to not have to come back to Philly on separate occasions, to not have to go back to Detroit, Indy on separate occasions. I just think that makes so much more sense from a product standpoint, makes more sense from a performance standpoint, certainly travel, saving legs. I understand the challenge of sometimes national TV and tickets with that, but I do think, all in all, it's a plus.”

These miniseries are also a plus because, in a way, they act as postseason prep.

“It’s kind of like a playoff feel, right?” Celtics center Tristan Thompson pointed out. “You’re there for four days, and you just take it one day at a time.”

So far, the Celtics have experienced a pattern with their same city sets, having lost both Game 1s against Indiana and Detroit, only to bounce back and win both Game 2s.

The trend continued Wednesday night with a Game 1 loss against Philly, so we’ll see if they can maintain their Game 2 bounce-back successes during Friday night’s rematch.

- Taylor Snow

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