Jared Sullinger

Jared Sullinger

In a game where both teams combined for 40 turnovers, the Celtics outscored their opponent in the second half and closed out the preseason by beating the Philadelphia 76ers, 81-65. Marcus Smart’s 10 points and Jared Sullinger’s 14 rebounds led the charge, as the Celtics finished the preseason with a 6-1 record.

The Celtics held the lead throughout most of the game until the end of the second quarter, when Philly cut the lead to three heading into halftime. The Celtics then opened up a 12-point advantage in the third quarter and never looked back. 76ers rookie Jahlil Okafor notched 12 points and eight rebounds for Philadelphia.

For a complete box score, click here.

Stud of the night: Jared Sullinger

Sullinger finished the preseason on a high note, he pulled down 14 rebounds and scored six points against the 76ers. He was also cheerful on the bench — on his feet, encouraging his teammates after every big play. The Celtics grabbed a lot of boards against Philadelphia last night. Amir Johnson snagged 13 rebounds and Kelly Olynyk had 12. But it was especially nice to see Sullinger active around the glass. After a lukewarm start to the preseason, Sullinger will carry on great momentum heading into the regular season.

Dud of the night: James Young

In 20 minutes, Young tried to his best to find his groove offensively but much like the entire preseason; he came up short. He finished with three points on 12 shots. There’s a good chance Young may be starting his regular season in Maine with the D-League affiliated Red Claws.

Philadelphia will get their shot at revenge when they head to the TD Garden next Wednesday for a season opening match up against the Celtics.

Blog Author: 
Josue Pavon

It’s the weighty question that hangs over the Celtics.

How much will Jared Sullinger contribute at the start of the season?

There are subsets to that question, as well. Like how much will he be able to contribute, what will his role be and perhaps most of all, what does head coach Brad Stevens envision as a realistic starting point when the season opens Wednesday against the Philadelphia 76ers.

The 6-foot-9 power forward listed at 260 pounds played three stints Thursday in a 99-85 preseason win over the Knicks at TD Garden. His final line: 19 minutes, 6-of-10 from the field, eight rebounds and a team-high 16 points.

“I think he played at the end of the game because we wanted to throw the ball at the post and score,” Stevens said. “So obviously, there were other guys in the game that hadn’€™t played up to that point, but he had played three stints, [and] that was his third stint.”

At the start of camp, Sullinger acknowledged that his family and former NBA star John Lucas all but had an intervention to help him with his weight approaching 300 pounds and his conditioning. Sullinger can look out on the floor and see a long list of names that are fighting with him for significant playing time, names like Amir Johnson, Jonas Jerebko and David Lee. Games like Thursday seem to be an indication that he’s at least headed in the right direction as he builds his stamina off the bench.

“You know, time will tell how it all works itself out with minutes but I thought he did a lot of good things,” Stevens said. “As the season goes on, we’€™re always going to factor in good play. So that’€™s a good thing.”

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

After losing to the Knicks at Madison Square Garden last Friday night, the Celtics avenged their defeat by beating New York, 99-85. The C’s took control early in the first half by being aggr

Tyler Zeller

Tyler Zeller

After losing to the Knicks at Madison Square Garden last Friday night, the Celtics avenged their defeat by beating New York, 99-85. The C’s took control early in the first half by being aggressive offensively and never allowing the Knicks to settle into their halfcourt defense.

Tyler Zeller had the kind of offensive production that earned him a starting job last season, scoring 15 points on 6-of-11 shooting and pulling down five rebounds. His great hands caught nearly every pass thrown his way, allowing him to finish around the hoop for easy buckets.

Jose Calderon (17 points, 8 rebounds) led the way for the Knicks, but the Knicks struggled offensively and couldn’t get All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony going.

For a complete box score, click here. For a breakdown beyond the box, read on.

Stud of the night: Jared Sullinger

Sullinger had a stellar night, filling the stat sheet with 16 points, eight rebounds and six assists. He fought for most of his points in the paint, where he also grabbed rebounds and played solid defense against the Knicks. When he battled inside more often, he was able to make his layups or draw contact and earn trips to the foul line. Sullinger just has to do a better job at making those free throws. He went 4-for-10 from the charity stripe, but that was the only part of his game that prevented him from having a spectacular night.

Dud of the night: Carmelo Anthony 

It was Jae Crowder versus Anthony, and Crowder reigned victorious in this bout. Crowder not only put together a solid statistical game (13 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists), but also pestered Anthony all night. The Knicks star scored eight points on 18 shots — all when Crowder wasn’t defending him — and never got into a rhythm. It was a great battle for Crowder.

Isaiah Thomas (tendinitis) and Kelly Olynyk (rest) did not play. No word yet if either will make the trip up to Manchester, N.H., where the Celtics will take on the Toronto Raptors Friday night in their preseason finale.

Blog Author: 

Terry Rozier made the parquet pay after missing this and-one. (Brian Babineau/Getty Images)

Terry Rozier isn’t making Brad Stevens’ job any easier.

All aboard. Last week, Celtics fans fawned over the impressive play of rookie R.J. Hunter. Monday, it was Terry Rozier’s turn to ride the rookie hype train.

BOSTON- All aboard! Last week Celtics fans fawned over the impressive play of RJ Hunter; tonight, it was Terry Rozier’s turn to ride the rookie hype train.

Rozier dazzled the TD Garden crowd with a number of explosive plays that showcased why Danny Ainge selected him with the 16th pick in last year’s draft.  Rozier led the team with 16 points as the Celtics rolled past the Brooklyn Nets 111-105. Amir Johnson (15 points), Kelly Olynyk (14), and Evan Turner (10) also finished in double-figures, while the Nets were led by Bojan Bogdanovic (18) and Thomas Robinson (15).

For a full box score click here

Stud of the night: Terry Rozier

Before the game, Coach Brad Stevens noted that, ‘€œit’€™s an especially important week for Terry Rozier, having not played last week. He’€™ll see a lot of time over the next five days.€ Tonight Rozier’€™s elite speed and quickness was on display, as he was explosive in transition, attacking the basket with reckless abandon. Heck, even two of his misses were exciting. The Celtics first round pick finished with 16 points, knocking down all three of his attempts from three. Rozier also shot 5 of 8 from the charity stripe, something that will serve him well if he continues to get into the paint. With both he and RJ Hunter playing well this preseason, it will be very interesting to see how balances their playing time in an already guard-heavy rotation.

Dud of the night: Jared Sullinger

I only picked Sullinger because I don’€™t know any of the players on the Nets bench. Sullinger scored 3 points and grabbed 3 boards in 13 minutes of action. Traditional dud candidate James Young hit two threes, so the title de facto fell to Jared. Sully, we can’€™t all be studs, just ask Joey Fatone. To continue with the train theme I mentioned in the lede but quickly abandoned, Sullinger has a big caboose.

Vine of the night

Rozier both Shakes and Bakes #SpaghettiAndRanch

Whine of the night

The Brooklyn Nets Starting Lineup. With Brook Lopez, Joe Johnson, Thaddeus Young, and Jarret Jack not making the trip for the Nets, coach Lionel Hollins trotted out one of the least talented line-ups in NBA history: Donald Sloan, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Bojan Bogdanavic, Justin Harper, and Thomas Robinson. The starting unit combined for 00 points, 00 rebounds, and exactly 3.5 minutes of exciting basketball. If had to compare this Nets lineup to a Jay-Z album, it would have to be Kingdom Come. As the only projected starter, Bojan Bogdanovic thus qualifies as ‘€œShow Me What You Got’€ IN a vacuum, he is not that great, but when surrounded by trash he looks like a semi-decent player.

Stat of the night

1:6. This is the ration of the number of Avery Bradley long two attempts to three point attempts. Although he was only 2 for 6 from beyond the arc, I cannot and will not criticize his shot selection.

@ of the night

While I appreciate the sentiment, Amir Johnson does just about everything better than the late great P.J. Brown. ( I know he’€™s not dead, but late-great has a nice ring to it.)

Isaiah Thomas (knee), Jae Crowder (thumb), and David Lee (strep throat) did not play due to various acute injuries. With the Celtics not practicing tomorrow, the night off will give the players two days of rest before the team practices again on Wednesday.

The Celtics will play the New York Knicks on Thursday.

Blog Author: 
Sam Packard

Over the next month, we’ll chronicle the 25 most consequential trades of Danny Ainge’s tenure as Celtics president of basketball operations. When we’re done, we’ll have a better understanding of Ainge’s philosophy and success rate on the trade market. Perhaps by the end of this exercise we’ll even feel better about the future of this rebuild. At the very least, we’ll have something interesting to debate while we wait for preseason to play out.

With that out of the way, here’s No. 3 on the list of Danny Ainge’s 25 most consequential trades.

June 28, 2007: Hello, Ray Allen.

ARRIVING in Boston

  • Ray Allen: When Allen was traded to Boston, he was coming off the most productive scoring season of his career, averaging 26.4 points at age 31 for the 2006-07 Seattle SuperSonics, and was widely considered the greatest shooter in the history of basketball. At least his stroke was deemed the smoothest ever ‘€” until Stephen Curry came along a decade later ‘€” so, yeah, the Celtics were getting a bona fide superstar.
  • Glen Davis: Big Baby was coming off a productive LSU career, including SEC Player of the Year honors in 2006, but the combination of his undersized height (6-foot-9) and oversized weight (298 pounds) kept teams at bay until the second round of the 2007 NBA draft. Ainge must’ve felt Davis’ footwork as a scorer and rebounder around the basket would translate, and he was right. Davis turned out to be a productive, albeit inconsistent, contributor who even developed a decent jump shot during the C’s two trips to the finals.

DEPARTING to Seattle

  • Jeff Green: It turns out the 2007 NBA draft wasn’t great beyond Kevin Durant. The top 10 produced two other All-Stars ‘€” Al Horford and Joakim Noah ‘€” neither of whom are transcendent talents. The best player in the draft not named Durant was Marc Gasol, and he went 48th after every team passed on him at least once. So, Green was a solid pick at No. 5 overall. We’ve already discussed how his career turned out in Boston, for better or worse, but he was a decent fit in Oklahoma City, averaging 14.2 points and 5.7 rebounds over three-plus seasons. It would’ve been fascinating to see how the Thunder would’ve fared with a lineup of Russell Westbrook, James Harden, Jeff Green, Durant and Serge Ibaka for the past few years. That’s a monster team. Had they won a title, this trade would’ve worked out for both teams. Instead, only Boston has a championship banner as a result, and for that how can anyone regret trading a top-five pick for Allen?
  • Wally Szczerbiak: At this point, Szczerbiak had two years remaining on his four-year, $63 million contract, his knees were shot and he wasn’t capable of doing much more than still firing off 3’s at a 40 percent clip, so of course the LeBron James-led Cavaliers 1.0 traded for him and Delonte West eight months later in a three-team deal that returned Donyell Marshall, Ira Newble and Adrian Griffin to Seattle.
  • Delonte West: So, yeah, West was a decent player for Ainge to toss into this deal, but he lasted just 35 games on the Sonics. West enjoyed a resurgence alongside James in Cleveland for a couple years, but his career circled the drain after that, including a season back in Boston.
  • Portland’s 2008 second-round pick (Trent Plaisted): This was the pick Ainge acquired from the Blazers when he dealt a lottery pick for Sebastian Telfair, so at least he got some use out of it, sweetening the pot in this deal a bit. Seattle ultimately flipped the pick to Detroit in a trade for the rights to D.J. White — another short-lived Celtics legend — and Plaisted never made it out of an NBA summer league.

In the end, Ainge got five seasons out of Allen ‘€” including three All-Star campaigns ‘€” and four from Davis, amassing 327 wins, three conference finals appearances, two trips to the NBA Finals and the 2008 NBA title. Not too shabby.

Sonics general manager Sam Presti got three and a half seasons from Green and a half-season each from Szczerbiak and West, translating into one 50-win season and zero playoff series victories. I think we know who won this deal. (Granted, Green turned into Perkins and a trip to the NBA Finals for the Oklahoma City Thunder, but c’mon …)

The most fascinating aspect of this trade is that Ainge actually succeeded in trading a top-five pick for an aging star. There are countless examples of that sort of deal working out in the other team’s favor ‘€” Red Auerbach‘s swap of Ed Macauley for Bill Russell in 1956 chief among them. Ainge gambled and lost by dealing the first top-10 pick of his tenure for Telfair in 2006, and then gambled and won on this trade a year later, setting in motion a chain of events that left the Celtics with late first-round picks for years to come. It’ll now be fascinating to see how not trading the No. 6 pick in 2014 (Marcus Smart) will work out for Ainge after he shopped it hard in the Kevin Love sweepstakes.

Blog Author: 
Ben Rohrbach

The Knicks frontcourt set the tone early and prevented the Celtics from settling into their comfort zone offensively.

The New York Knicks‘ front court set the tone early on against the Celtics, and prevented Boston from settling into their comfort zone, offensively.

Knicks forward Derrick Williams‘ 19 points and 5 rebounds led the way for the Knicks in a 101-95 win over the Celtics. The Celtics struggled to get into an offensive rhythm. Although the Celtics shot just under 40 percent, the Knicks defended well in the paint and forced the Celtics to turn the ball over in the second half. The Celtics managed to make a late comeback in the fourth quarter but it came up short after the Knicks knocked down back-to-back three-pointers.

James Young scored 8 of 10 points in the fourth quarter. Seeing him score is always a good sign, this was easily his best game of the preseason.

Stud of the night: Isaiah Thomas

In only his second start in a Celtics uniform, Isaiah Thomas shot 5-for-9 for 13 points and dished out 5 assists in 24 minutes. He made two three-pointers and knocked down most of his shots in transition. The Celtics offense was at its best in transition against the Knicks, and Thomas was a big part of that. But in the second half, when it came to driving to the hoop and inside scoring the Knicks’ front court defense made stops and prevented the Celtics from scoring in the paint.

Dud of the night: Kelly Olynyk

After a solid outing against the Nets, Kelly Olynyk struggled offensively against the Knicks. New York contested his jump shots and forced Olynyk to take off-balanced attempts. He went 1-for-7 and finished with a measly 2 points, 3 rebounds in 11:49. Olynyk has played well early on throughout the preseason but much like his teammates Amir Johnson, David Lee and Jared Sullinger; he just couldn’t find an offensive groove against the New York’s Robin Lopez, Kyle O’Quinn and Lance Thomas.

Vine of the night

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Coach Brad Stevens was handed just his second tech of his NBA career after a justifiable no-call in the second half after Knicks guard Cleanthony Early made contact with Tyler Zeller’s fast-break dunk. Stevens didn’t think twice when he stepped onto the court to plead his case. I agree coach, that was a foul.

Always great to see Stevens riled up.

Whine of the night

In his best game of the preseason, so far, Jared Sullinger only scored 5 points against the Knicks but managed to pull down 10 rebounds. Knicks forward Kyle O’Quinn may have given Sully the ounce of motivation he needed to grab 10 boards. O’Quinn tossed Sully around the paint and made every layup attempt difficult for Jared. He also earned a flagrant foul after sending Sullinger to the floor in the third quarter. It’s a great sign to see Sullinger grab 10 rebounds, however, 1-for-8 from the floor and going 3-for-6 from the free throw line isn’t going to fly for a guy who was considered one of the Celtics’ biggest scoring threat and is entering his fourth NBA

Stat of the night 

The Celtics had 18 turnovers, while the Knicks only had 7. When the Knicks opened up a double-digit lead in the second half, the Celtics responded with a run in the third quarter. But after things got chippy between the two teams (O’Quinn’s flagrant foul), the Celtics made bad passes and committed a number of turnovers that led to an 88-80 fourth quarter lead by the Knicks.

Blog Author: 
Josue Pavon