Isaiah Thomas is very happy that his coach doesn’t get discouraged by a little cold streak.

Isaiah Thomas is very happy that his coach doesn’t get discouraged by a little cold streak.

The instant offense offense off the Celtics bench missed his first four shots in the first quarter Wednesday night as the Celtics struggled out of the gate.

Thomas made three of his next five shots and that was a sign of things to come as the Celtics outscored the Sixers, 30-14, in the second quarter, grabbing control of the game, 51-40, at the halftime break.

Smart his 5-of-8 shots in the third quarter, including a three at the buzzer as the Celtics took a 79-67 lead into the final quarter.

“I mean that’€™s the biggest thing,” Brad Stevens said. “We’€™ve talked quite a bit about that: play with speed, play aggressive, play with spirit, let the chips fall where they may with him. We know a hot streak is coming.”

Thomas scored 13 of his game-high 27 points in the third quarter as the Celtics cruised to a 112-95 win in the season opener at TD Garden.

“That’€™s my job,” Thomas said of keeping the shots coming. “I’€™m not going to be shy when I’ve got a job to do out there. Coach has confidence in me. My teammates have confidence in me, and they tell me to continue being aggressive ‘€“ so I’€™m going to continue to do that.”

Thomas’ 27 points came in 29 minutes of action. The Detroit Pistons of the mid and late-80s had Vinnie Johnson – “The Microwave.” The Celtics have Isaiah Thomas.

“I work on it ‘€“ each and every day,” Thomas said. “I know that some point in time, it’€™s going to fall. I have that confidence in my game, and I work on my craft, so I think the harder you work, and when it doesn’€™t happen in games, you go to what you know. When I get into the spots that I like to go to in my workouts, and feeding off my teammates, no matter if I’€™m having a good game or not, you have to just make the right play out there. If the right play is to shoot, and I’€™m not making them, I have to continue to shoot that shot.”

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia
Mikey talks with former Celtics star Dana Barros about his career in the NBA, and

[0:00:49] ... throw shooting contest but it wasn't with basketball's it was on my TV show with rolls of toilet paper. You remember that all yeah you don't live on air jet lag on the year with a Michael Jordan junior Jimmer and and I'd be too by one and I you said that's no good bed. And I have you come back a few weeks later you got nine out of ten kick mass. Yeah the comeback bid in due course. Old world history you know access to do and I was the one spread the word different but there. So you know that this here we go okay the torrid fifteen to a sixty c.s are gonna start with this. I was very very encouraged by the way this Celtic basketball team. Under Bret Stephens started to played down the stretch data really they were I think 24 and twelve in their last ...
[0:02:00] ... Yet they they did add a colleague had they added Johnson and David Lee who did not Dave David Lee really was in a kind of a bad situation last year reading get very many minutes based on all the personnel he ...
[0:08:52] ... the big guy perspective though the smaller of the two. You know David Lee's 69 but he plays a lot bigger than that is you know how housing improvement going to be underneath this team Dana. ...


It’s unclear whether the Philadelphia 76ers are an NBA team, but the win counts just the same.

It’s unclear whether the Philadelphia 76ers are an NBA team, but the win counts just the same.

With a 112-95 win over the ever-tanking Sixers on opening night, your Boston Celtics are 1-0, undefeated, atop the division standings and tied for the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. One down, 81 to go. Brad Stevens is probably already watching Toronto Raptors tape right now.

Isaiah Thomas led the way with 27 points (10-19 FG) and seven assists. He was joined in double figures by Amir Johnson (15 points, 7 rebounds), Jae Crowder (14 points, 6 rebounds), Marcus Smart (13 points, 5 assists) and Jared Sullinger (12 points, 7 rebounds). Production abound.

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

STUD OF THE NIGHT: Isaiah Thomas.

It wasn’t a great shooting night for the Sixth Man of the Year favorite, and he still had 23 points through three quarters. Thomas missed his first five 3-point attempts, but made up for it by getting to the line a ton (6-7 FT) and knocking down a triple just before the third-quarter buzzer that pushed the C’s lead to 79-67. He added seven assists against three turnovers and generally destroyed the 76ers on the pick-and-roll, mostly with Johnson working as his partner.

DUD OF THE NIGHT: Tyler Zeller.

This could just as easily be David Lee, but Zeller was yanked 5:13 into the ballgame after the Sixers scored 10 of their first 15 points in the paint. He returned briefly in the second quarter and was removed again shortly after Philadelphia point guard Isaiah Canaan scored on another layup. Zeller was removed for the starting lineup at halftime in favor of Sullinger, and he sat the entire time the Celtics build their lead as large as 15 points.


Out of a timeout with 2.9 seconds left in the half, the Celtics ran a ton of misdirection in the paint, only to have Smart inbound the ball, hop to the 3-point line and get the ball back. It was the simplest of play calls that led to a buzzer-beating 3-pointer and a 51-40 halftime lead for the C’s.

WHINE OF THE NIGHT: Let’s hope this is the last time I write this sentence: More Johnson, please.

Okafor was killing the Celtics with eight early points on four shots within five feet of the basket, so Brad Stevens answered with Jared Sullinger midway through the first quarter? I was under the impression interior defense was precisely why Amir Johnson was signed this past summer. On the ensuing possession, Okafor scored on Sullinger within five feet of the basket, giving the 76ers a 17-11 lead.

Johnson finally checked in with 2:31 remaining in the opening quarter and the C’s trailing by nine. He recorded a block on his first possession. Over the next 8:14, the Celtics outscored Philadelphia 18-2 and grabbed a 35-28 lead. You do the math.

STAT OF THE NIGHT: 26 fast-break points.

Despite their youth last season, the Celtics ranked in the middle of the pack with 13.6 fast-break points per game — a slight uptick from Stevens’ first season. Granted, they were facing the 76ers, but the C’s scored 34 points off 24 turnovers and thrived in transition. Pace and space is all the rage, and they had the first part down in the opener.


Blog Author: 
Ben Rohrbach

Prior to Wednesday’s season opener against the hapless Philadelphia 76ers, Celtics coach

James Young

James Young

Prior to Wednesday’s season opener against the hapless Philadelphia 76ers, Celtics coach Brad Stevens confirmed he would employ the same starting lineup he used to finish out the preseason: Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart, Jae Crowder, David Lee and Tyler Zeller.

The two inactives for the C’s: R.J. Hunter (illness) and James Young, whose benching officially establishes him as the last guy on the 15-man roster. Rookie second-round pick Jordan Mickey earned the spot final spot over him. And if Young can’t crack the depth chart when Hunter is ill, then he likely won’t be seeing time in Boston soon, since they play the same position.

Meanwhile, the 76ers will start Boston area native Nerlens Noel and lottery pick Jahlil Okafor along with three guys you may have never heard of — Hollis Thompson, Jakarr Sampson and Isaiah Canaan. The league’s tanking experiment gone wrong for the past several seasons, Philadelphia offers a prime opportunity for the Celtics to start the season off with a win in front of their home crowd.

Blog Author: 
Ben Rohrbach

You know those special sections the Herald and Globe put out to kick off basketball season? This is the opposite. Sweet dreams! (Frank O'Brien/Getty Images)

Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge joins Dale and Holley to preview the 2015-2016 Celtics season.

[0:13:06] ... the new season coming up but. There was some status in with Flip Saunders gets them some comments about that. Yeah outlook was that he's a great coach. I was not that slipped got the most ...
[0:16:05] ... step in year two. Brad improvement of Brad Brad Stevens edition of David Lee Dugard Johnson. So those that those with a subtle subtle changes forty faster than they had a big finish win four games. ...
[0:18:03] ... early this reps. Right you're right it maybe it's maybe it's. Declining Tim Duncan but it declining Tim Duncan. Some people can't even medium one has declined. He's that good right yeah is that he had great price for Greg Popovich. Yet Tim Duncan. Yet Tony Parker. Yamana Ginobili they had an emerging coli Leonard who was all over LeBron in that series and it was ...
[0:21:14] ... would hope though. This year somebody steps up whether it's more of Isiah Thomas or markets Smart. Takes a really big jump. And looks like a star than you look at the Celtics and you say ...

Celtics president Danny Ainge issued a statement following the death of Timberwolves coach and president