The Celtics host the Atlanta Hawks for the second of 4 conferences this season. The Celtics received the primary recreation 113-103 in Boston on November 26. They’ll meet twice extra in Atlanta on March 25 and March 28. Boston received the sequence 3-0 final season, profitable twice in Atlanta and as soon as in Boston. The Celtics additionally beat them 4 video games to 2 within the first spherical of the playoffs final season.
The Celtics stay 1st within the East. They’re 5 video games forward of 2nd place Cleveland, 5 video games forward of third place Milwaukee, 5.5 video games forward of 4th place New York, 7.5 video games forward of fifth place Philadelphia, and 10 video games forward of sixth place Indiana. Milwaukee continues to be enjoying as I write this so their place might change. The Celtics are 23-3 at dwelling and 7-3 of their final 10 video games. They’re 25-6 in opposition to Japanese Convention groups and they’re coming off a win of their final recreation.
the Hawks are tenth within the East, 1 recreation behind ninth place Chicago, 4 video games behind eighth place Miami and 5.5 video games behind sixth place Indiana and a assured spot within the playoffs. They’re 1.5 video games forward of eleventh place Brooklyn and dropping out of play-in place. They’re 10-14 on the highway and 5-5 of their final 10 video games. They’re 13-20 in opposition to Japanese Convention groups and are coming off a loss of their final recreation.
The Celtics are enjoying within the sixth recreation of a 7 recreation dwelling stand. They’re 3-2 up to now on the house stand, shedding to the Lakers and Clippers and beating New Orleans, Indians and Memphis. They’ve yet one more recreation on this dwelling stand in opposition to the Wizards earlier than a recreation on the highway in opposition to Miami after which a again to again dwelling and residential sequence in opposition to the Nets.
The Hawks are coming off a 6 recreation dwelling stand the place they went 4-2, beating Toronto, the Lakers, Phoenix, and Golden State and misplaced to the Clippers and Mavericks. That is the primary of two consecutive highway video games for them and they’ll play at Philadelphia after this recreation. Then they’ve 2 video games at dwelling in opposition to Houston and Chicago earlier than enjoying at Charlotte after which a 3 recreation dwelling stand.
Jrue Vacation was listed as questionable for this recreation with a proper elbow sprain. He has been downgraded to out. I might guess that Derrick White will transfer to the purpose and both Sam Hauser or Al Horford will get the beginning in his place. Jaylen Brown is now not listed on the harm report. The Celtics have traded for Xavier Tillman however I doubt that he’ll be capable to play on this recreation. Lamar Stevens can also be heading to Memphis within the deal for Tillman.
For the Hawks, Clint Capela was identified with a left adductor pressure following an MRI on Sunday and can miss this recreation and might be re-evaluated in 7-to-10 days. Mouhamed Gueye is rehabbing from a again harm and is listed as out for this recreation. De’Andre Hunter is listed as possible for this recreation. He has been coming off the bench and enjoying by means of knee soreness. Coming off considered one of his finest video games of the season, it’s potential that Hunter will return to the beginning lineup instead of Saddiq Bey.
Dejounte Murray was initially questionable for Wednesday’s recreation in opposition to the Celtics resulting from decrease again tightness. He’s a late scratch and is now listed as out. I’m guessing that Bogdan Bogdanovic is prone to get the beginning in his place.
Possible Celtics Starters
2 Means Gamers
Jrue Vacation (elbow) questionable
Xavier Tillman (commerce) uncertain
Possible Hawks Starters
2 Means Gamers
Mouhammed Gueye (again) out
Clint Capela (thigh) out
Dejounte Murray (again) out
De’Andre Hunter (knee) possible
Jrue Vacation vs Trae Younger
Younger is averaging 27.3 factors, 2.8 rebounds, 10.9 assists and 1.5 steals per recreation. He’s taking pictures 43.5% from the sector and 38.4% from past the arc. Within the first recreation in opposition to Boston, he completed with 33 factors, 5 rebounds, and seven assists whereas taking pictures 44.4% from the sector and 37.5% from past the arc. I’m hoping that Jrue can play, but when not, Derrick White must be matched up with Younger on the level. The Celtics can have their palms full making an attempt to sluggish him down and hold him from having a giant recreation.
Derrick White vs DeJounte Murray
Murray is averaging 21.4 factors, 5.1 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 1.3 steals per recreation. He’s taking pictures 46.6% from the sector and 37.3% from past the arc. Murray can also be one of many Hawks finest defenders. Within the first recreation in opposition to the Celtics, he completed with 6 factors, 4 rebounds and three assists. He shot simply 15.4% from the sector and didn’t shoot a 3. As soon as once more, if Jrue Vacation is out, Jaylen Brown will doubtless be the taking pictures guard for the Celtics. The Celtics might want to work arduous on each ends of the courtroom to get the higher of this matchup.
Honorable Point out
Jayson Tatum vs Jalen Johnson
Johnson is averaging 15.6 factors, 8.3 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.3 steals per recreation. He’s taking pictures 52.4% from the sector and 36.7% from past the arc. He didn’t play in opposition to the Celtics within the first recreation between these two groups. The Celtics must hold Johnson off the boards as he is among the higher rebounders on the group.
Keys to the Recreation
Protection – Protection is all the time a key to profitable video games. Protection is very necessary for the Celtics on this recreation as a result of the Hawks are scoring group, averaging 121.6 factors per recreation, which is third within the league. The Celtics are fifth, averaging 120.3 factors per recreation. The Celtics have a defensive ranking of 110.6 which is third whereas the Hawks have a defensive ranking of 120.0, which is twenty seventh. The Celtics should make protection a precedence on this recreation and so they must play that powerful protection for 48 minutes and never let up.
Rebound – Subsequent to protection, rebounding is a key to profitable. A lot of rebounding is effort and need. When the Celtics put out the additional effort on the boards, it often carries by means of to the remainder of their recreation. The Hawks are averaging 44.9 rebounds per recreation (eighth) whereas the Celtics are averaging 47.5 rebounds per recreation (1st). The Hawks are third with 16.1 second likelihood factors per recreation. The Celtics must aggressively go after each rebound. They will’t afford to present the Hawks additional possessions and 2nd likelihood factors by permitting them to seize rebounds.
Keep Centered – The Celtics want to return in centered and keep centered all through the sport. They should concentrate on their pictures and shot choice. They should concentrate on making their free throws. They should concentrate on enjoying protection and making the precise switches. They should concentrate on making good passes and never turning the ball over because the Hawks common 17.5 factors off turnovers per recreation. And they should concentrate on sharing the ball and making the precise play. Lack of focus ends in these horrible taking pictures nights and excessive turnover video games and so they can’t afford both of these on this recreation.
Vitality and Physicality – The Celtics misplaced to the Lakers, who have been quick handed, however they performed more durable than the Celtics. The Celtics must be the group that performs more durable and with extra vitality. They have to be extra bodily to counter the physicality of their opponents. The Celtics have expertise, however they’ll’t afford to permit groups to play more durable and with extra vitality than them, even groups with a shedding document just like the Hawks.
House Courtroom– They name it dwelling courtroom benefit for a motive and the Celtics must benefit from enjoying on their dwelling courtroom. The Celtics must get motivation from the house crowd, which must be loud and doing every part of their energy to assist the Celtics and rattle the Hawks. The Hawks have the distractions of journey and an unfamiliar area and a hostile crowd and hopefully that can give the Celtics a bonus.
Officiating – Officiating is all the time an x-factor. Each crew calls the sport a bit of in another way with some calling it tight and others letting them play. Some refs simply make head scratching calls whereas others attempt very arduous to get them proper. Typically they’re tech loopy for each little factor. In some video games they name the two halves fully in another way. The Celtics have to regulate to how the sport is being known as and concentrate on enjoying the sport and never on the officiating.
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