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Friday, 15 November 2013 16:40

Portland Trail Blazers at Boston Celtics: Game #10 Preview

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Portland Trail Blazers (6-2, 2-1 away) at Boston Celtics (4-5, 2-2 home)

TD Garden at 7:30 p.m. on CSNNE – For Tickets Click Here

Officials: Marc Davis, Derrick Collins, Haywoode Workman.

Line: Portland -3

The C’s look to bounce back from a tough loss to the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday night that ended their 4-game win streak. Coming in at 4-5 overall, Boston is currently the No. 8 seed in the east and has surprised many in the early stages. They need all hands on deck, however, if they’re going to beat the Blazers.

PROBABLE STARTERS

Celtics

PG: Jordan Crawford

SG: Avery Bradley

SF: Jeff Green

PF: Brandon Bass

C: Kelly Olynyk

 

Trail Blazers

PG: Damian Lillard

SG: Wesley Matthews

SF: Nicolas Batum

PF: LaMarcus Aldridge

C: Robin Lopez

INJURIES

Rajon Rondo (OUT) – Knee

Jared Sullinger (In) – Knee

 

CJ McCollum (OUT) – Foot

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

·      After missing Wednesday night’s game with a knee injury Jared Sullinger is back. Sully missed only the one game after injury his knee taking a charge against the Orlando Magic on Monday. It is nice to have the second-year big man back, given the height Portland has.

·      Defense has been the story all year long for Brad Stevens’ squad. The Celtics are at the bottom of the league in points, rebounds, and assists heading into tonight’s game, but have given up only 95.6 points-per-game thus far. That number is seventh best in the entire NBA.

·      Can the Crawford/Bradley tandem continue to impress? Sliding Bradley to the SG spot and making Crawford the team’s primary ball-handler has worked for the first five games, but will it continue to have success?

NOTES

·      Kelly Olynyk and Vitor Faverani have been nice additions to Boston’s frontcourt this season. Olynyk is averaging 8.7 points and 6 rebounds per game, while Faverani is posting 6 points and 5.7 rebounds. The two have added some nice depth and skill to the Celtics rotation of big men early on.

·      Brandon Bass is key. Bass has had five games total where he shot over 40% this season, and four of them have been victories for Boston. The Celtics have not won a game where “all-I-do-is-ball” Bass failed to eclipse the 40% mark.

·      For those of you wondering, the Celtics (4-5) currently sport a better record than the Nets (2-5), the team that acquired Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett from the C’s.

PREDICTION

·      This one is going right down to the wire. The nitty-gritty C’s will catch Portland on a bit of an off night, though, and sneak away with a win at home. The Celtics defense will make the difference in this one.

Boston Celtics 94, Portland Trail Blazers 91.

Nick Solari

Nick is a Celtics Beat Writer for CLNS Radio. He is a sophomore print jourmalism major at Quinnipiac University, and was born and raised in Bennington, Vermont.

You can follow Nick on twitter @ns0lar1 ... Or reach him by email at nick.solari@gmail.com

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