With Rondo & Sully both sitting tonight, the obvious question was where would the offense come from? Well, early on, it did not come at all. Jeff Green started the night 0 for 8 and as a team, Boston shot just 26% in the first quarter. Behind Isaiah Thomas and DeMarcus Cousins, the Kings had a 23-16 lead after one quarter of play in Sacramento. Boston went into tonight’s game with just 9 players available-Bradley & Faverani did not make the trip & as mentioned earlier, Rondo (resting the knee) & Sullinger (mild concussion) both got the night off.
The Celtics fared a bit better in the 2nd quarter. Jeff Green finally found some offense late in the frame, and Humphries (7 second quarter points) was playing well on both sides of the ball. Kris had Cousins frustrated and basically stifled him during Boogie’s 7 minutes on the floor. Thanks to Green’s 10 second quarter points, Boston ended the first half on a 10-2 run. It was 51-43 Kings at the half. Sacramento was aggressive in the quarter, and got to the FT line quite a bit.
Boston came out of the locker room for the 3rd quarter as if they’d been fired out of a cannon. Shots began to fall and the C’s were within three points, 53-50 with 9:15 left in the quarter. Green & Humphries continued to be the catalysts, and Brandon Bass shrugged off a rough start to get it going also. Jeff had 9 points in the quarter, Bass 8. But unfortunately, they had trouble slowing down the Kings on the other end. Sacramento continued to push the tempo against a C’s team that played last night in L.A. SacTown shot 58% from the floor in the quarter, and were up 77-70 heading into the final frame. Give credit to Green-after an abysmal start tonight, would’ve been easy for him to mail the rest of this one in. His 19 points in the 2nd & 3rd, were key to Boston keeping this game from getting out of hand.
It looked like the Kings were about to run away with things come the start of the fourth. Sacramento upped their lead to eleven, 85-74 with 10:02 left in the game. But Kris Humphries and Jeff Green would not let Boston go down without a fight. Humphries was in DeMarcus Cousins’ head all night, and if not for a few “blown” calls, (more on that later) Cousins would’ve fouled out midway through the fourth. After Carl Landry committed a flagrant & Kelly Olynyk hit the first FT, the game was tied at 85 with 6:23 left. But it was all Kings after that. Boston simply could not hit the big shot/get the big stop when it really mattered. It was a game effort, but the Kings win 105-98. Rudy Gay had 22 points and Isaiah Thomas had 21 points & 12 assists.
Brad Stevens received his first ever ejection tonight after giving referee (and known asshole) Marc Davis a piece of his mind near the end of the game. Davis
missed turned a blind eye to a couple of easy calls on Cousins in the fourth. Gerald Wallace was also ejected for saying something to Davis. The Celtics now head to Utah where they play the Jazz on Monday. Tip-off is at 9pm EST.
- Can’t say enough about the effort from Kris Humphries tonight. He rented out serious space in DeMarcus Cousins’ head, locked him up on defense and had a season-high 19 points. Humph also had 8 rebounds, 4 asts, 2 blks & 2 stls.
- It’d be easy to leave Uncle Jeff out of “The Green” tonight, as he shot 7 of 25, but his 29 points in 43 minutes of play (19 points in the 2nd half) were key to this not being a walk in the park for Sacramento.
- Boston lost this game at the free-throw line. The Celtics were 24 of 36 from the charity stripe
Humph in Boogie’s head
Clip of Stevens’ first ever ejection
Stevens didn’t really argue to get tossed, he looked at Davis and said “throw me out too.” #celtics
— gary washburn (@GwashburnGlobe) February 23, 2014
Brad Stevens said this was the first time he has ever been ejected on any level.
— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) February 23, 2014