BOSTON – Even before Boston went about smashing the Chicago Bulls behind a dominant second-half showing, they seemed to play with a little more pep in their step at both ends of the floor.
Especially Jaylen Brown, whose activity at both ends of the floor was among the keys to Boston’s 117-92 win over the Bulls.
Brown, who did not play at New York on Thursday because of a sore Achilles injury, had 20 points on Saturday which included four 3-pointers.
Having a couple days to rest clearly was exactly what Brown needed.
“He looked great to me,” said Marcus Smart. “He was moving well so that’s great for us.”
One of the keys to Brown’s play was the ability of Kyrie Irving to embrace the blitzing strategy of the Bulls and make them pay by getting the ball into the hands of Brown who was open most of the night.
“He’s one of the best,” Brown said of Irving who had 25 points and seven assists. “A true point guard, a guy that makes the right plays, makes great decisions and he’s assertive. It makes it easier for guys like me.”
Following the victory, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens was asked about Brown looking “fresher” after having an extra day of rest.
“I think that helps anybody,” Stevens said. “It’s funny; we only played 48 hours ago, but I felt way better and so I’m sure that everyone else did. And I think that’s just part of this whole thing. And you’re going to have days where you feel better than others, but you always have to try to play the right way and we need as many bodies as we can.”