Isaiah Thomas, playing with a heavy heart after the death of his sister in a car crash, scored 33 points the Celtics’ Game 1 loss to the Bulls yesterday.
A. Sherrod Blakely of CSN New England:
Celtics coach Brad Stevens says Isaiah Thomas will play in Game 2 against the Bulls Tuesday night at TD Garden then travel to Seattle to be with his family following the death of Thomas’ sister, who was killed in a car crash Saturday.
“Whatever he needs to do, he needs to do, and we’ll help in any way,” Stevens said. “If he needs to and wants to stay here, then we’ll be here surrounding him. And if he wants to go to Seattle, then he should go to Seattle. It’s his call; and should be.”
I can’t even imagine what Thomas is going through – dealing with this grief while on the biggest stage of his career. Good for the Celtics for doing whatever they can to accommodate him, but there’s no way to make this easy.
Though this obviously isn’t the primary concern, he’ll be instrumental in Boston’s chances of evening the series. The Celtics outscored Chicago by 12 with him on the court yesterday and got outscored by 16 when he sat. Boston is so reliant on Thomas offensively, especially late.
This sure didn’t look like just another game for Kevin Durant – and not only because the Thunder beat the Warriors for the first time since he left.
The 108-91 Oklahoma City victory didn’t look like just another game for Russell Westbrook (34 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and four steals), either.
With the shot clock off in the fourth quarter and the game tied, Grizzlies big JaMychal Green put back Tyreke Evans‘ miss with a clutch flush. There’s a very fine line between ensuring the last shot and leaving time for an offensive rebound, and Memphis threated it almost perfectly.
Emphasis on “almost.”
The Grizzlies left the Mavericks 0.5 seconds, which Harrison Barnes used to bank in a 3-pointer – off a pinpoint bounce pass by Dennis Smith Jr. – to give Dallas a 95-94 win.
The Celtics didn’t have another comeback in them.
After overcoming a 13-point fourth-quarter deficit against the Mavericks on Monday to extend its winning streak to 16 games, Boston lost to the Heat tonight, 104-98. The streak ends as the NBA’s longest since the Hawks won 19 straight during the 2014-15 season.
The Celtics trailed Miami by 16 in the fourth quarter then cut the deficit to only one with three minutes left. But Dion Waiters hit back-to-back 3-pointers, helping the Heat pull away.
Goran Dragic (27 points) and Waiters (26 points) led Miami, which needed a reason to feel good after losing three of four to fall to 7-9.
The Celtics, on the other hand, still have a four-game cushion over the rest of the Eastern Conference. This might help them regain focus.