Unfortunately for the Boston Celtics, three is the magic number. On the second night of a back-to-back, the Celtics were unable to win what would have been a season-high fourth game in a row.
The Milwaukee Bucks beat the Celtics 96-93 on Saturday night. Playing their fourth game in five nights, the C’s (19-31) were unable to sustain a comeback attempt that brought them within one point in the final minute. Brandon Knight led all scorers with 26 points and sealed the game with an impressive step-back jumper in the final 10 seconds.
The Celtics struggled to deal with the absurd length of the Bucks (28-23). The Celtics were unable to establish their motion offense, and instead settled for contested jumpers. They shot 42 percent from the floor and an abysmal 24 percent from 3-point range. Avery Bradley, Tyler Zeller, Marcuses Smart and Thornton each had double-figure points in the loss.
For the complete box score, click here.
Greek Freak Freaks Greeks; Potential best player in NBA history
Giannis Antetokounmpo is the most intriguing player in the NBA. The 6-foot-11 20-year-old is STILL growing, is a dynamic ball-handler, and has the ability to euro-step and dunk from the 3-point line. Coming off a career-high 27 points against the Rockets, the talents of the Greek Freak were on full display against the Celtics. Finishing with a double-double (14 points, 11 rebounds), Antetokounmpo impacted almost every aspect of the game. His length was most impressive, as he bothered Celtics shooters the entire night. I fully expect Giannis to win the Slam Dunk contest next weekend and slowly evolve into the best player in the universe.
Brandon Knight is underrated
In the point guard-heavy NBA, Brandon Knight is not a household name. After being drafted eighth by the Pistons in 2011 out of Kentucky, Knight had a disappointing couple of seasons in Detroit. In Milwaukee, though, Knight has drastically improved his game. Last season he averaged a career-high 17.9 points per game and continues to do a solid job leading the surprisingly good Bucks offense. Saturday, he had a very impressive first half, scoring 18 of his 26 points.
Sullinger stays in the paint
To the delight of Celtics fans everywhere, Jared Sullinger only attempted 3 three pointers tonight (Although, his shot in the final 2 minutes was particularly reprehensible) For the majority of the game, he chose to plant his excess posterior in the paint. In the first half, he was the best C’s player on the floor, scoring 12 points and grabbing 5 boards. Recently, Sullinger has been doing an excellent job passing the ball, but only finished with 2 assists in tonight’s game.
Tayshaun Prince returns to the rotation.
After being sidelined with a hip injury, Brad Stevens- favorite savy vet- returned to the rotation with excellent results. When the Celtics went small, Prince played the four, notching 8 points in 19 minutes off the bench. Tayshaun’s return meant that rookie James Young, who had seen his minutes increase in recent games, did not see the floor, finishing with a DNP-Coach’s Decisions.
Marcus Smart continues to improve on offense.
After a couple low scoring performances, Smart finished with over 10 points for only the tenth time this season. In the first quarter, the rookie continued his assault from beyond the arc. He opened the game by knocking down 2 for 4 from deep. Smart has also shown remarkable improvement running the offense, particularly in the pick and roll. He finished with 13 points but only 1 assist.