BOSTON – It’s rare that the Boston Celtics win the battle of the boards, and even rarer that they do it in such a resounding fashion as we saw in their 90-83 win over Dallas on Wednesday.
The Celtics out-rebounded the Mavericks 53-32 as 10 of the 11 players used by head coach Brad Stevens snatched at least two rebounds.
“Maybe it’s the law of averages and some just bounced our way,” Stevens said. “I felt like we had a good … we were into bodies.”
CELTICS 90, MAVERICKS 83:
- Highlights: Boston Celtics 90, Dallas Mavericks 83
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- WATCH: Isaiah Thomas between-the-legs pass to Avery Bradley for the slam
But Stevens is keeping his team’s rebounding performance in perspective, pointing out how Dallas has not been a high rebound percentage team this season.
While that’s true, they were still better at rebounding coming into Wednesday’s game than the Celtics.
Dallas’ rebounding percentage (.482) prior to Wednesday’s game was 24th in the NBA while the Celtics (.469) were second-to-last in the league.
But you would not have known that by the way Boston controlled the boards and in doing so, gave themselves a shot at winning on a night when their shots were off the mark more than usual.
Still, Stevens was pleased with his team’s overall play especially with the job they did rebounding the ball.
However, he’s quick to point out that his team still has a lot of work to do all phases of their play, rebounding included.
“Not ready to anoint us the greatest rebounding team in the world yet,” quipped Stevens.
Here’s a look at the Stars, Studs and Duds from Wednesday night’s game.
A slow start followed by a seriously wicked surge in the fourth quarter not only propelled Boston to victory, but served up yet another example of why Thomas is among the best players in the NBA. He led all players with 30 points, 22 of which came in the fourth quarter. He also had six assists and four rebounds.
Thrust into the role of Dallas’ go-to player with Dirk Nowitzki (Achilles) still out, Barnes led a strong second half charge to make it a game. He led the Mavericks with 28 points on 12-for-24 shooting from the field.
Boston’s double-double machine just keeps on piling up the gaudy stats you don’t expect to see from a 6-foot-2 guard. Bradley finished with his sixth double-double of the season, scoring 18 points to go along with a career-high 13 rebounds.
While some might think that Matthews has lost a step, the 3-point shot is still hot as ever. He tallied 22 points on Wednesday which included six 3-pointers.
One of the strengths of this Boston team is that they don’t make a lot of mistakes as far as turnovers. That was not the case on Wednesday as the Celtics committed 19 turnovers which is significantly higher than their 12.9 turnovers per game average coming into Wednesday’s game which ranked 10th in the NBA.