Celtics

Kyrie Irving seeks 'therapeutic' shot session after loss in Miami

Kyrie Irving seeks 'therapeutic' shot session after loss in Miami

MIAMI — Boston Celtics point guard Kyrie Irving engaged in a half-hour shooting session on the Miami Heat’s practice court following his team’s 115-99 loss on Thursday night.

Irving, addressing reporters after Boston’s entire locker room had cleared out, called the solo session, “therapeutic” and, on a night the Celtics elected to stay in Miami before flying to Orlando on Friday, Irving suggested it was better than a night out on South Beach.


"That’s my job, right? So it’s always good to get some extra work after a tough loss,” said Irving. “[The Heat] shot extremely well. They did some great things tonight. I’ve got to give credit to the Heat team today. They came prepared, made some big shots. We just couldn’t get that run. 

"I just wanted to get some extra shots, feel good going into the next game. We’re staying over in Miami, so I’d rather be in here than be out in Miami right now.”

Irving joked that his strength and conditioning guru Robin Pound would, “probably kill me for doing stuff like that,” particularly after the second night of a back-to-back, but Irving said he wanted to see some shots go in.

"just wanted to feel good about my jump shot, and shots that I missed tonight,” said Irving. "Very makeable ones. And shots that I didn’t take tonight. Just wanted to feel good about it, that’s all.”

What exactly goes on during a solo workout?

"Just imitating things that the defense was doing to me tonight and the pressure they were putting on me, and the opportunities I didn’t take advantage of,” said Irving. "I just want to feel good about it. It’s just good to get some shots up, just release some stress a little bit. After a tough loss off a back-to-back, it’s just good to see a shot go in a little bit. It’s just therapeutic.

"It’s not so much about the frustration from the game. It’s just more or less therapeutic for you just to go out there and mentally just feel good about your game and things you could have taken advantage of and you could prepare better for next game. I’m going to see different defenses all year but when you can go out there and be well-conditioned and go from the game and go up to get another workout in, it’s always good. You just want to be smart about it. But like I said, it’s just a great, great stress reliever when I see some shots go in.”

Irving, still dressed in game shorts and a tank top as he addressed reporters an hour after the game’s completion, was answering a question when the lights in Boston’s locker room went out. Told he must have shot the lights out in his session, a laughing Irving said he was “above 90 percent up there, for sure.”

Irving said it was all part of responding to adversity and learning how to react when things don’t go well.

"It’s going to get harder, especially when you have that goal of getting that gold trophy,” said Irving. “It’s going to get tough and we gotta be able to withstand plays and things that happen within a game.”

Celtics coach Brad Stevens has repeatedly noted in recent days how he didn’t think his team handled adversity particularly well early in the year but they’ve started to show more resiliency lately, a hallmark of last year’s team that overcame injuries to Irving and Gordon Hayward to surge to the fringe of the NBA Finals.


Irving said he needed to be tougher as well, calling himself out for a particularly noticeable lapse early in Thursday’s game.

“When things get tough, we just got to be able to weather the storm and tonight I don’t think we did a great job of that, just being able to withstand certain runs and be able to execute our offense, and defensively being in the right spots, including myself,” said Irving. “S---, I got dunked on tonight. I wasn’t in the right spot early on. A lot of just toughness things we can do to improve and just continue to work on that.”

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

How Tacko Fall, Carsen Edwards, Romeo Langford and Tremont Waters fared for Red Claws on Friday

How Tacko Fall, Carsen Edwards, Romeo Langford and Tremont Waters fared for Red Claws on Friday

The Maine Red Claws had plenty of star power for Friday night's game vs. the Iowa Wolves. 

Tacko Fall, Carsen Edwards, Tremont Waters and Romeo Langford each suited up for Maine in its 127-121 victory. It marked Edwards' first game with the Red Claws, as well as both Tacko Fall and Romeo Langford's first game back from injury.

LIVE stream the Celtics all season and get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App.

Here's how the four Celtics rookies performed:

TACKO FALL

Tacko made his mark in his 14 minutes played on Friday night. The 7-foot-5 phenom contributed 13 points on 5-for-8 shooting while bringing down 5 rebounds.

CARSEN EDWARDS

Edwards was solid in his first game in a Red Claws uniform as he racked up 17 points on 6-of-11 shooting (2-for-9 from 3-pt).

ROMEO LANGFORD

Langford was slow out the gate, but picked it up in the second half to finish with 8 points, 3 assists and 3 rebounds. The Celtics' No. 14 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft will look to simply stay healthy going forward, as he's dealt with a nagging ankle injury all season.

TREMONT WATERS

Waters, the G League Player of the Month for November, was relatively quiet in this one. The LSU product dropped 8 points while adding 3 assists in 27 minutes.

Also with standout performances were Yante Maten (26 points, 16 rebounds), Kaiser Gates (17 points, 7 rebounds), Bryce Brown (15 points, 4 assists) and Justin Bibbs (12 points, 6 rebounds).

Next, the Red Claws will take on the Grand Rapids Drive on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET.

Celtics Talk Podcast: What is your level of confidence with this Celtics team?

celtics_talk_podcast.png
File Photo

Celtics Talk Podcast: What is your level of confidence with this Celtics team?

Ahead of a strange five-day break in mid-December, the Boston Celtics are sitting at 17-7. But it's hard to figure out exactly how confident to be in this team.

On the one hand, the squad has certainly surpassed expectations to kick off the season. They have been dominant at the TD Garden and did have a 10-game home winning streak to start the campaign.

However, the C's just dropped two close games in a row to other Eastern Conference powers, the Philadelphia 76ers and the Indiana Pacers. Do those losses mean that the confidence in the Celtics that many were feeling to start the season should wane?

LIVE stream the Celtics all season and get the latest news and analysis on all of your teams from NBC Sports Boston by downloading the My Teams App.

On the latest episode of the Celtics Talk Podcast, Chris Forsberg, A. Sherrod Blakely, and Abby Chin all weighed in on how confident they currently are in the Celtics. And despite the team's mini losing streak, they all are still fairly confident in the squad.

Chin gave the team a 7-of-10 confidence rating. She cited the performance of the Celtics' bigs against the 76ers and the "flashes" the team has shown this season as the primary reasons for that.

I feel like the Celtics bigs, Daniel Theis and Enes Kanter, did a serviceable job against Joel Embiid and held their own on the offensive end, and that gave me a lot of confidence in this team. I think that there's no way you're going to get that kind of game from Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum on the same night maybe ever again in their careers in what they put up against the Sixers. And I still think we see flashes of what this team can be here and there which is why I'm excited about them.

Blakely was a bit more non-committal on a rating, and instead gave a range of somewhere between 7 to 8 with 8.5 being their ceiling.

I see two different teams. I see a team when they're complete and I see a team when they're incomplete. When they're incomplete, I'm with you, they're a 7. They were incomplete against Philly. When you have a healthy Marcus Smart and a relatively healthy, good-to-go health-wise team, they're an 8.

Blakely also called the Celtics "a good team" and said that if every team in the Eastern Conference was fully healthy, his top two teams would be the Milwaukee Bucks and the Celtics.

Hear Forsberg's confidence in the Celtics along with more analysis from Blakley and Chin on the latest episode of "The Celtics Talk Podcast," which drops every week on YouTube and as a part of the NBC Sports Boston podcast network.

BLAKELY: Could Marcus Morris be on the move from the Knicks?>>>

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Mavericks, which tips off Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike & Scal have the call at 9:30 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.