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Post-game Reactions

What an embarrassment. Those are the only real words that come to mind after the new-look Cleveland Cavaliers came into Boston and crushed the C’s, 121-99. It was the most points that Brad Stevens squad has allowed all season. Seriously, I can’t imagine how all of Celtics legends in attendance for a certain ceremony felt about that beating.

A day that was supposed to be a celebration of Paul Pierce’s Hall of Fame career quickly turned into a disaster. The Celtics actually led 32-31 after the first-quarter but a flurry of points from Lebron James late in the half put Cleveland up 64-52 at the break.

The Cavaliers success on offense continued into the second half as they shredded Boston’s defense. Cleveland would lead by as much as 29 en route to the win. With their moves at the trade deadline, it looks like the Cavs could once again be a formidable threat in the Eastern Conference.

Boston falls to 40-18 with the loss while Cleveland improves to 33-22. The Celtics sit at No. 2 in the East, half a game back of Toronto and 5.5 games ahead of the Cavaliers. 

Celtics

  • Kyrie Irving looked engaged early, going right at James and knocking down a step-back jumper over him. But he began to teeter off as the game went on. Irving finished with 18 points and 5 assists. He went 1/7 (14.3%) from deep.
  • Marcus Morris was really the only Celtic who seemed ready for this game. He had 17 points and 3 rebounds while knocking 3/6 (50%) from behind the arc.
  • Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown each had poor games. They combined to shoot 6/20 (30%) for 14 points. Neither could get much going on either end of the floor.
  • Boston really needs Marcus Smart and a buyout market guard. The only guard who played for the Celtics off the bench today. Other than that, their backup rotation consisted only of forwards and centers. It’s hard to match up in the current NBA when you’re being forced to play big.
  • The Celtics were ice cold from the floor in the loss. They finished 36/89 (40.4%) from the field, 10/38 (26.3%) from deep, and 17/22 (77.3%) from the line.
  • Boston’s bench didn’t do the starters many favors, shooting a combined 13/35 (37.1%) for 32 points. Terry Rozier netted 21 of those.

Cavaliers

  • What more can you say about Lebron James? Despite exiting with an injury early in the game, James returned and pummeled the Celtics. He led the Cavaliers with 24 points, 8 rebounds, and 10 assists. He really looked like he was enjoying himself on the bench as his new teammates finished this one off.
  • Jordan Clarkson was extremely impressive off the bench. He had 17 points, 3 rebounds, and 2 steals while knocking down 3/4 (75%) from behind the arc.
  • Rodney Hood also was successful off Cleveland’s bench. The former Jazz swingman finished with 15 points and 3 rebounds. He went 3/6 (50%) from deep.
  • As a team, the Cavaliers went 16/30 (53.3%) from three-point range.
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Dustin Lewis

Dustin Lewis is a student at Florida State University who is majoring in Editing, Writing, and Media. He has an unhealthy obsession with Marcus Smart's FG% and Terry Rozier's inability to connect on alley-oops. Lewis is also the lead writer for NoleGameday and contributes to the FSView with a focus on sports.
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