Recap: Celtics beat an uninspired Rockets team 111-95
The Celtics continued their recent streak of success with a win Monday night against the Rockets in Houston. The C's trailed by four after the first quarter, tied things up at 55 by halftime, and rode a 32-13 3rd quarter run to an eventual 111-95 victory.
The common theme throughout the game was Houston's overall lack of effort. They threw lazy passes and continuously failed to get back on defense. I'm not sure what's going on with Kevin McHale's squad but they didn't even want to be on the floor tonight. Scal and Mike Gorman commented numerous times on how quiet the arena was and how the Rockets' PA announcer even sounded depressed.
But that's enough about the other guys. The Celtics looked great again tonight as they grabbed their third win in a row and their fifth in the last six games. When the NBA schedules came out back in August I'm sure there weren't many people that saw them going 2-0 in a back-to-back in Oklahoma City and Houston.
Boston was able to stay in the game in the first half thanks to 15 points from Isaiah Thomas on 6-7 shooting to go along with five assists. Jae Crowder also contributed seven points and Jared Sullinger and Amir Johnson grabbed five rebounds apiece.
The story for the Celtics when they came out in the 3rd quarter was their effort on the defensive end. It was clear that Houston had no intentions of turning up their intensity, so the Celtics locking things down in the second half pretty much guaranteed the victory. They finished the game with 16 totals steals.
Isaiah Thomas was once again the leading scorer as he shot 9-12, dropped in 23 points and dished six assists.
Avery Bradley (21 pts, 8-14 FG) and Jae Crowder (16 pts, 7-10 FG) also had great shooting nights.
Marcus Smart (4 pts, 1-11 FG) unfortunately didn't have the scoring night that he had in OKC on Sunday. What he did do was what he always does, lead the Celtics defensively. The 6'4" guard finished with nine rebounds (team high) and five steals (team high).
Regardless of the Rockets' lackadaisical play, it's not easy to beat a team with their level of talent in their own building, never mind coming on the end of a back-to-back. This is another impressive win for the green as they improve to 6-4 on the season. They're beginning to form an identity as a dominant defensive team.