Tonight the Celtics faced off against the struggling 76ers and got a much needed win 105-87. The Celtics had lost three straight before this game so it was important to get back on track. The Celtics are now 8-14 on the season and now two games out of the last playoff spot. Most fans won't even consider the possibility of the playoffs this season but if we could have closed out a few games last month this team could be at or above .500. Tonight the game belonged to Kelly Olynyk as he posted a career high in points with 30 adding 9 rebounds 3 steals 2 blocks and an assist.
The game got off to an incredibly slow start as the Celtics missed their first nine shots. Fortunately the 76ers couldn't capitalize only getting out to a seven point lead which was not enough. Once Olynyk came into the game and started making a few shots the rest of the team started to follow and it wasn't long before we had the lead. The first quarter was a show of why these teams are not in the conversation plenty of missed shots and turnovers. The Celtics did end the first quarter with a 30-25 lead but it was not a very well played twelve minutes and against most teams in the league we are probably down at least five after playing like that. The second quarter however was all Celtics as they out scored the Sixers 27-13. The team was hitting its shots and playing some great defense. The celtics got contributions from just about everyone in the second quarter about the exact opposite from the first when Olynyk scored 14 of 30 points. The Celtics capitalized on some poor play from the Sixers and ended the half with a 57-38 lead.
The Celtics started the second half with another slow start allowing the Sixers to hang around for most of the third quarter never being able to put them away. Is wasn't until the Celtics went on a ten point run with about five and a half minutes left in the quarter that the game was no longer in doubt. Brad Stevens kept this team on track and after a slow start in the quarter called a timeout and got everyone refocused. The Celtics had a 24 point lead at the end of the third quarter 88-64. The fourth quarter was not very exciting with the game pretty much already decided. Really the only good thing to say about it is the Celtics didn't completly pack it in and didn't let the 76ers back I to the game. That is likely because of some good coaching so good job Stevens. On a quick side note I really just want to see Stevens get mad he is always so calm and collected I wanna see some fire just once. Other then that he did a good job tonight.
Hopefully this game shows Olynyk what he can do if he looks for his shot and stays aggressive through the game. The Celtics need to continue to grow as a team and figure out what each player does best because we can't win if we only have one player going off. On the bad news front Marcus Thornton has suffered a small tear in his calf and will miss about two to three weeks. Also Marcus Smart has suffered a strained Achilles and may return later this week but that is not set in stone. This team has enough depth at shooting guard to not be held back too much by these injuries. Hopefully the Celtics can build some momentum this week and turn it into a good streak of wins. All it would take is a three or four game win streak and this team is right back into the playoff conversation. The next game for the Celtics is against the Magic on Wednesday and it is another chance for the Celtics to win. As always keep checking back for all of the news and updates on your favorite Boston teams.