Feb 7, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Celtics center Jared Sullinger (7) reacts after making a basket during the second half against the Sacramento Kings at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Celtics-Mavericks Preview

The Celtics look to extend their 3 game win streak against the Dallas Mavericks in tonight’s game.

After a miserable stretch in January where they won just two games, the Celtics have already eclipsed that total with a surprising 3 game win streak — albeit against some lowly competition. The wins haven’t been all that impressive. All three of them have come against teams with bottom 5 records in the league but Boston has to be careful with this streak so they don’t accidentally stumble into a playoff spot — which is frighteningly possible, Boston is only 4 games back of the 8th seeded Bobcats.

Dallas is not a team that’s probably going to roll over like the last 3 teams. They may be the 8th seed in the West but their record would be good for the 3rd seed in the East. Dirk Nowitzki, or the “German Assassin” as Gerald Wallace dubbed him, is having an astounding season for a player his age. He’s shooting 49% from the the field, 41% from 3, and 90% from the line. He’s also averaging 24.4 points per-36 on a 60 TS%. All amazing numbers for someone who’s 35 and playing in his 15th season in the NBA. Dirk is gonna give this team hell with not much of the length + mobility bigs on the team — maybe Humphries or Wallace? I don’t think you can really put Sullinger on him and expect him to have success. Wallace might be able to check him for a bit, but no matter what Dirk is going to pose some sort of problem for this team.

It remains to be seen whether or not Rondo and Avery are going to play. Neither of them played on Friday and it was implied that it was just precautionary/rest so I wouldn’t be surprised to see them suit up tonight unless they’re still feeling sore. It’s needless to say that Rondo’s presence has already helped this team in creating opportunities. He’s already 13th in the league in points created by assists per game per NBA.com and is 4th in points created by assists per game per 48 minutes. Obviously both of those stats need the small sample size warning but you can tell that he’s making a substantial impact even as he tries to gain his speed/athleticism back.

The biggest thing to look out for tonight is which Jeff Green we’ll get tonight. Will we get the aggressive Jeff Green or will we get “3-13 Jeff Green”. He doesn’t need to drop 30 tonight because that’s too much to ask of an average player but I think I speak for most Celtics fans when I say that some consistency would be nice.

The game tips-off at 6 P.M. on NBATV and CSNNE. Check back later after the game for the recap and follow our account @HoudiniCeltics!

 

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