Utah at Boston
7:30 P.M. ET
Boston: 91.9 points/100 possessions (29th)
Utah: 92.6 points/100 possessions (26th)
Boston: 101.5 points allowed/100 possessions (18th)
Utah: 103.2 points allowed/100 possessions (24th)
Probable Jazz Starters:
Jamaal Tinsley (PG), Gordon Hayward (SG), Richard Jefferson (SF), Derrick Favors (PF) & Enes Kanter (C)
View From The Opposing Bench: Salt City Hoops
Thumbnail: Let us set the stage: we have two 0-4 teams on a Wednesday night at the Garden with $9.85 balcony tickets – basketball fans cannot ask for much better than this. Fortunately for the Celtics, this is a SEGABABA for the Jazz. Therefore, Brad Stevens has a legitimate chance at his first NBA win against a team that is led by a man he knows pretty well. The two-time Horizon League Coach of the Year and Gordon Hayward, the conference’s 2010 Player of the Year, made the Butler Bulldogs a nationwide phenomenon and almost won a national title just a few years ago. In their first time on an NBA floor together, both are searching for their first victory of 2013-14.
The Celtics and Jazz have been winless through their first five contests only once in each of their respective franchise histories. Coincidentally, for both teams, it was done in their first years of existence. In 1974-75, the New Orleans Jazz began 0-5 and went on to have three different coaches that season, including Elgin Baylor. For the Celtics, you have to go all the way back to 1946-47 when the league was known as the Basketball Association of America (BAA). At that time, I am sure 12-year-old Tommy Heinsohn was getting into it with middle school basketball referees.
One of the reasons that both these teams have been struggling is that they have had tons of trouble handling the basketball this season. For the first time since 2006, the green have committed at least 17 turnovers in four consecutive games. In addition, Utah has turned the ball over at least 20 times in three of its four games this season. As we have seen on many occasions, the point guard experience of Avery Bradley has been a frustrating one as the Celtics have turned it over on an NBA-worst 22 percent of their possessions this season. However, it will be nice to see the league’s second-worst team in that category on Wednesday.
Prediction: Some ugly basketball with tons of turnovers, but the first victory tastes so sweet for Stevens as the Celtics take their sixth straight game from the Jazz.
Celtics 98, Jazz 91
For more Celtics coverage and pertinent statistics, follow CelticsHub and Adam Lowenstein on Twitter: @CelticsHub and @StatsAdam