|Kevin Garnett, PF 38 MIN | 6-11 FG | 7-7 FT | 10 REB | 2 AST | 19 PTS | +1
A ferocious and masterful game by KG. Not only did he play 38 long, physical minutes and score 19 points on 11 shots, he added 10 rebounds and 3 steals. On top of all that, he completely undid Carmelo Anthony, pushing him off his spots and throwing him off his game.
|Brandon Bass, PF 32 MIN | 3-3 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 6 PTS | +2
The rare game from Bass where his impact exceeded his numbers.
|Paul Pierce, SF 28 MIN | 10-18 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 6 AST | 23 PTS | +1
Some may eventually look back on Pierce’s career with regret because he languished in obscurity (relatively speaking) until KG and Ray Allen arrived in 2007. He deserved better because he is absolutely built for the bright lights. Takes particular pleasure in torturing the Knicks. Hit a couple of backbreaking shots in the fourth quarter, including one perfect time capsule step-back. Be still my beating heart.
|Avery Bradley, PG 33 MIN | 6-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 5 AST | 13 PTS | +4
There’s been a lot of mockery around the league about Bradley’s potential impact on the Celtics but since he’s been back he’s completely changed Boston’s defense. His ball pressure forces teams to get into their offense late, he regularly breaks up pick and rolls and he gets up into bigger offensive players. All that plus 5 assists, and 6-11 shooting.
|Jason Terry, SG 31 MIN | 1-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 5 AST | 2 PTS | -1
More atrocious shooting but he did manage to pull down a few boards and hand out a few dimes. Should tip his cap to Bradley, whose return is keeping the spotlight off Terry’s recent troubles. That noted, I have an evidence-free conviction he’ll come around for the playoffs.
|Jared Sullinger, PF 19 MIN | 3-5 FG | 4-4 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | +9
One of his very best games of the year. He’s so adept at carving out space under the basket, holding off an opposing rebounder with one arm and snagging the ball with his free hand. Plus, he knows how to play off the ball and when to cut. Plus, he digs contact. In my mind, he’s the starter-elect but Doc will probably filibuster any changes to the starting lineup now the C’s are winning again.
|Jeff Green, PF 27 MIN | 5-10 FG | 5-6 FT | 6 REB | 3 AST | 16 PTS | +6
A legitimately terrific game from Green. He helped force Melo into a terrible shooting night, attacked judiciously but regularly and pulled down 6 big rebounds. I have absolutely no confidence he’ll carry this over to Wednesday night but Green was dynamite tonight.
|Courtney Lee, SG 20 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 5 PTS | +3
He ended up getting fewer minutes than expected despite Rondo’s absence but as has been typical of his recent good play, Lee managed to contribute in multiple ways beyond just playing defense. He’s clearly turning the corner and the real question is whether a trade and another team awaits him around the bend.
|Leandro Barbosa, SG 13 MIN | 3-3 FG | 2-3 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 8 PTS | +5
Points when the C’s needed ’em.
|Jason Collins, C DNP COACH’S DECISION MIN | FG | FT | REB | AST | PTS |
“From Starter to DNP: The Jason Collins Story.”