The Boston Celtics start the month of March on the right track as they defeat the Golden State Warriors 94-86. Boston played great team defense throughout tonight’s game, and limited Stephen Curry’s chances of getting an open shot. For the Celtics this was a great team win from top to bottom. Everyone who played contributed, whether it was on defense or offense and even players like Jordan Crawford had a hand in helping Boston get the win tonight. Moving forward, this is something the team can build off of and maybe tackle every opponent in the same way as they did against the Warriors.
Golden State had no answer for Boston’s pick and roll offense. Chris Wilcox, Kevin Garnett, and Paul Pierce got to the basket with little to no resistance, and with the Warriors lack of shot blocking at the center position, it was easy for smaller players to get to the rim. Because the Warriors don’t have much height and the Celtics spread the floor so well, Pierce was making some impressive moves to the hoop and finishing with the and-1 on a few occasions.
If it wasn’t for Jeff Green tonight, the Warriors could have stolen tonight’s game away from the Celtics. Green, who finished with 18 points, 10 in the fourth quarter alone, made some very difficult shots to beat the twenty-four second shot clock, and when he was aggressive no one was going to stop him when he got into the paint. When he gets in a rhythm and is in the shoot first, pass second mentality, he plays with more confidence and usually makes more shots. That’s exactly what we saw from him tonight, and after taking some hard hits, he deserves a few days of rest as the Celtics prepare to take on the Philadelphia 76ers next Tuesday.
The real key to the Celtics victory tonight was the defense they played on Stephen Curry. Avery Bradley locked him down, forcing him to pass instead of taking and making shots. When Bradley got into foul trouble, other players stepped up and kept him at bay for most of the night. Curry did finish with 25 points, but 10 of those were from the free throw line. Boston forced the Warriors to have other players try beating the Celtics, but with most of their points coming from Curry, they had no answer for Boston’s evenly distributed offense.
The Celtics now get a four day break before they take on the Philadelphia 76ers and Indiana Pacers on Tuesday and Wednesday night. After tonight, Boston deserves the time off and this will also give the team time to practice to get Jordan Crawford and Terrence Williams acclimated into the system. Tonight was a great team victory, and if they can play like they did against the Warriors for the rest of the season, they’ll start accumulating wins and possibly get a higher seed for the playoffs.