With a new look starting lineup, partly out of necessity (Marcus Smart's toe) and partly due to poor performance (David Lee and Tyler Zeller) the Celtics were paced by Isaiah Thomas' 27 points, 7 assists, and 2 steals but came up shy on the road against Indiana. Paul George had a great all around performance for the Pacers with 26 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals and tough defense on Avery Bradley's attempt at a buzzer beater.
Down 98-93 with !:31 to play, Bradley nailed a huge three pointer to make it a two point game. Moments later, Bradley stuck a jumper off a Stevens ATO call and it was all tied up at 98 with a minute to play. It stayed that way for a few possessions, but Monta Ellis drew a foul on Avery Bradley and the Pacers took a 100-98 lead with 13.7 seconds to go. That set the stage for the Celtics to get the final shot, but an Avery Bradley three pointer fell short. Bradley ended the game with 21 points.
NOTESThe starters went back and forth with the Pacers from the tip-off, trailing by 13-11 when Olynyk relieved Sullinger with 5:30 left in the first quarter. Isaiah was routinely picked on when the Pacers had the ball and was eventually relieved by rookie Terry Rozier, who saw time before Evan Turner. But the second unit did nothing. The Celtics put up 16 first quarter points and trailed after 23-16 after one. The Pacers closed the quarter on a 17-7 run.
Terry Rozier first stab at meaningful minutes did not go great. His energy was appreciated, but his two turnovers were not.
RJ Hunter got his shot early in the second, it took awhile for them to run a play for him but when they did he immediately canned a foot on the line two. RJ went on to play 13 minutes overall and was a team best +8 on the game. Just saying.
Isaiah Thomas kept the Celtics in the game during the first half. The little guy ended the half with 16 points on 5-10 shooting, 1-2 3PM, 5-5 FT. The Celtics trailed 49-43 at the half. The 13 turnovers the C's had at the break were the killer.
Jae Crowder drilled a 97-footer with a second left in the first half, but sadly, it wasn't exactly street legal.
Stevens stuck with the starters for a longer stretch to start the third quarter, not going to the bench until 3:36 left in the quarter. The first unit cut the 6 point halftime deficit to 65-63 before Stevens went to Lee, Jerebko, and Turner.
A small ball lineup with Thomas, Hunter, Turner, Jerebko, and Lee got major minutes early in the fourth quarter. An Isaiah Thomas three off a David Lee offensive rebound gave the Celtics a 79-78 lead with 8:40 to play. Paul Colahan 11/04/2015 09:41:00 PM Tweet Edit