Eight-point leads are such a tease.
On a night when most people were more interested in the college basketball games on TV, the Celtics looked equally uninterested in the proceedings. Every time Boston went on a run and cut the lead to six, eight or ten points, the Mavericks responded with a 3-pointer or a pair of baskets to push the lead back to a comfortable double-digit margin. It never felt like a close game, despite being within striking distance throughout.
The Celtics just looked uninspired and uninterested, with the possible exception of Jason Terry in his homecoming, who looked overanxious in a 3-9 effort.
Let’s get to the bullet points.
- Brandon Bass finished with 16 points, but he hit 8-8 from the free throw line, which was indicative of his aggressive play, as was his 11 rebounds, including seven offensive.
- Brandan Wright MURDERED Boston all evening. He finished with 23 points on 11-16 shooting, hitting from mid-range, grabbing offensive rebounds for putbacks and using pick-and-rolls to slice through the Celtics’ defense.
- 26 fouls for the C’s. 22 for the Mavs. The game was so choppy, it was borderline unwatchable.
- In the final moments, Courtney Lee landed on a foot and seemed to sprain his ankle. Lee, who has been playing some of the best basketball of his season in the past few weeks, clutched his knee at first, which was enough to make any C’s fan watching panic immoderately. Replays showed his ankle rolling. Hopefully he is alright.
- Signs Jason Terry was pressing: 0-2 from the 3-point line (both were contested), three turnovers, more field goal attempts than points, no assists. All of the ugh.
- Jordan Crawford shot 3-11 from the field, but plenty of his shots were decent looks. I would maintain that he is interested in improving his shot selection. Of course, shot selection only REALLY matters when the shots go in.
- Other Celtic-killers this evening: Predictably Dirk Nowitzki (22 points, 8-15 from the field) and Vince Carter (6-17 for 19 points). Neither player was especially efficient, but both players scored too much. Carter, in particular, turned back the clock and crushed the rim driving baseline once.
That’s going to have to do it for tonight. More tomorrow as the Celtics take on Memphis. On the second night of a back to back. On the road. Probably without Courtney Lee. God save us all.
Follow Tom on Twitter: @Tom_NBA.