Celtics

Tacko Fall (finally) brings Tacko Time to an NBA game

Tacko Fall (finally) brings Tacko Time to an NBA game

Don’t miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Bucks, which tips off Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. ET with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike & Tommy have the call of the game at 7:30 p.m. You can also stream the game through the MyTeams App.

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NEW YORK -- When Tacko Fall is on the bench, more times than not he’s paying attention to the action on the floor, chatting with teammates or an assistant coach, looking at the way Boston’s bigs are moving on the floor and executing with the knowledge that someday he would get an opportunity to do so. 

But on Saturday, Fall’s first NBA game on the Boston Celtics’ active roster, he found himself doing a bit more scoreboard watching than usual. 

Fall knew as well as anyone the bigger Boston’s lead grew against the New York Knicks, the more likely he was to get a chance to see his first NBA action. 

“The lead was 11, then 13, 15 … it got up to 20 and I was like, ‘it’s time,’” Fall told NBC Sports Boston. 

With 3:59 to play and the Celtics ahead by 25 points, Tacko Fall made his NBA debut before finishing with four points and three rebounds as part of Boston’s 118-95 win. 

Fall’s first points as an NBA player came on - what else? - a dunk just 21 seconds after he checked into the game. He followed that up seconds later with another basket as the Madison Square Garden crowd gave him the kind of applause you seldom hear given to a two-way contract player, let alone one who plays for the Boston Celtics. 

But as we have all seen with Tacko-mania, the connection that fans have drawn to him has no partisan divide. 

And Fall, as he has done throughout his time in Boston, doesn’t seem the least bit swayed or overwhelmed with all the adulation and attention that comes his way by doing the simplest things such as checking into a game or catching the ball on the block.

“It’s just a blessing to be out there,” Fall said. “Not everyone gets the opportunity I have right now. Like I said, it’s definitely a blessing and I don’t take it for granted.”

Celtics coach Brad Stevens is among those impressed with the way the 7-foot-7 Fall has handled the immense amount of attention that is primarily generated because of his height.

“I don’t know if anybody not drafted in the top two or three has ever felt the kind of stuff he feels when he touches the ball,” Stevens said. “I just want people to appreciate him for how good of a kid he is and how hard he is working to make the NBA. Everyone is yelling about his size; I get it. But I hope people appreciate him for who he is and how hard he’s working.”

His teammates certainly do, which is why they are among the first to cheer him on with each and every successful milestone he reaches. 

“Even somewhere like this, that’s so well known for basketball, is almost considered a rival, for them to be cheering for him, it’s crazy,” Boston’s Carsen Edwards told NBC Sports Boston. “But he deserves it. He’s a good guy, puts in the work. At the end of the day, he doesn’t want to be a distraction. He’s just trying to be the best he can for this team. At the end of the day, if anybody gets that kind of love I’m glad it’s Tacko.”

Click here to see highlights from Tacko Fall's debut>>>

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Celtics' Marcus Smart signs posters for 'biggest fans' Grant Williams, Javonte Green

Celtics' Marcus Smart signs posters for 'biggest fans' Grant Williams, Javonte Green

Marcus Smart got a visit from two of his biggest fans in the Boston Celtics locker room on Friday.

Those fans were his rookie teammates Grant Williams and Javonte Green, who approached the longest-tenured Celtic with autograph requests.

Smart obliged, but he laughed off their requests to write "To Grant" or "To Javonte" on the Authentic Fan posters. Williams did, however, convince Smart to write "To Mini-Me" since Smart has referred to the 21-year-old as the younger version of himself.

Watch below:

To say the youngsters look up to Smart would be an understatement.

After missing the Celtics' win over the Heat with an illness and oblique injury, Smart will be back in action for Friday night's matchup vs. the Denver Nuggets.

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.

This historical stat bodes well for the Celtics chances of beating the Nuggets

This historical stat bodes well for the Celtics chances of beating the Nuggets

The Boston Celtics are trying to win their ninth consecutive home game at the TD Garden to start the season. To keep the streak alive, they'll have to take down a tough opponent in the Denver Nuggets.

The Celtics are on a three-game losing streak against the Nuggets, including a 96-92 defeat in Denver a couple of weeks. That said, history suggests that the Celtics shouldn't be worried about dropping a fourth game in a row.

According to Sean Grande, the Celtics have never lost four straight games to the Nuggets in the 44 years that the Nuggets have been part of the NBA.

Of course, it's important not to read into this too much, as trends are made to be broken. But still, it's an interesting nugget for the Celtics to be aware of before they take on the Nuggets.

After all, the C's did play hard against Denver at the end of a five-game west coast road trip and came back during a game in which Kemba Walker suffered a scary-looking injury. So, perhaps in the friendly confines of the TD Garden, they'll have a chance to emerge victoriously.

Heading into the game, the Celtics are favored by 3.5 points as the home team. Click here for our predictions about how the second meeting between the Celtics and Nuggets this season will shake out.

A. Sherrod Blakely's latest NBA Power Rankings>>>

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Nuggets, which tips off Friday at 7 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live, and then Mike & Tommy have the call at 8 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.