at Sacramento Kings (33-33) at Boston Celtics (41-27)
Thursday, March 14, 2019
7:30 PM ET
Regular Season Game #69, Home Game #35
TV: NBCSB, NBCSCA, NBA-LP 755(DTV)/755(xfinity)
Radio: WROR 105.7, KHTK 1140 AM
TD GardenProbable Starters
PG: Kyrie Irving
SG: Marcus Smart
SF: Jayson Tatum
PF: Marcus Morris
C: Al HorfordCeltics Reserves
Marcus Smart (illness) probable
Daniel Theis (illness) questionable
Jayson Tatum (shoulder) available
Terry Rozier (illness) out Two Way Players
P. J. DozierCoach
Brad StevensProbable Kings Starters
PG: De'Aaron Fox
SG: Buddy Hield
SF: Bogdan Bogdanovic
PF: Harrison Barnes
C : Willie Cauley-Stein
Harry Giles III
Frank Mason III
Marvin Bagley III (knee) questionable Two Way Players
Troy Williams Head Coach
Dave Joerger Game Notes
The Celtics returned from a 3-1 West coast trip that included a 111-109 win over the Sacramento Kings. Now, 8 days later, their first game back at the Garden is against those same Kings. Gordon Hayward hit the game winner in that game with 2 seconds left.
This is the third game of a four game road trip for the Kings. They are 1-1 on the trip so far. This game is the first of back to back games for the Kings with the Philadelphia 76ers waiting in the wings for the second game on Friday. The Kings are 5-5 on the first game of back to back games.
The Celtics are still in 5th place in the East, 2 games behind both Indiana (3rd) and Philadelphia (4th). They are 4-6 in their last 10 games and are coming off a loss in their final game of the road trip. They are 24-10 at home and 13-14 against Western Conference teams.
The Kings are in 9th place in the West. They are 4 games out of playoff position behind the 8th place Utah Jazz. And they are 4.5 games behind the 7th place Clippers. They are 13-19 on the road and 16-9 against Eastern Conference teams. They are coming off a loss to the Wizards on Monday.
Marcus Smart did not practice on Wednesday and is listed as questionable for this game with an illness. If he can't play, I'd expect Jaylen Brown to start in his place. Daniel Theis is also listed as questionable with an illness. Jason Tatum, who missed the Clippers game with a sore shoulder is listed as probable. For the Kings, Marvin Bagley III missed 5 games with a knee injury and has returned to basketball activities and is listed as questionable. Key Matchups
Kyrie Irving vs De'Aaron Fox
Fox is averaging 17.5 points, 3.7 rebounds, 7.2 assists and 1.7 steals per game. He is a very quick point guard and Kyrie will need to stay with him on the breaks to prevent easy baskets.
Marcus Smart (or Jaylen Brown) vs Buddy Hield
With Marcus being listed as questionable, if he can't play, Jaylen Brown may get his second straight start. Hield is averaging 20.0 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 2.4 assists. He is also shooting 44% from beyond the arc so the Celtics will need to stay with him especially on the perimeter. In the game in Sacramento, Hield had 23 points and 8 rebounds. Honorable Mention
Marcus Morris vs Harrison Barnes
Barnes is averaging 16.9 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.4 assists and can have big games. Against the Celtics in Sacramento, he had a team high 24 points along with 8 rebounds. Marcus needs to play tough defense as well as hopefully making Barnes play defense by making some shots himself. Keys to the Game Defense
- The Celtics are 5th in the league with a defensive rating of 106.1. The Kings are 17th with a defensive rating of 109.6. Defense wins games. They are coming off a game where they allowed 140 points and obviously didn't play much defense. The Celtics must make defense a priority. The Celtics also must particularly guard the perimeter as the Kings shoot the fourth highest percentage (37.5%) from beyond the arc as a team.Rebound
- Much of rebounding is effort and desire. The Celtics have to put out extra effort to grab the rebounds on both ends of the court. By doing so, they limit the second chance points and fast breaks for the Kings and also give themselves extra possessions. The Celtics were out-rebounded by the Clippers 47-29. The Celtics have to put out extra effort to beat the Kings to the boards if they want to get a win. Be Aggressive
- The Celtics must be the more aggressive team. They have to go after loose balls, and rebounds and also be more aggressive defensively. They have to be aggressive in going to the basket and also in moving the ball. The more aggressive team usually gets the calls and also the win. The Celtics have to play like the team that wants it more. The Kings will play hard to avenge their loss of 8 days ago. The Celtics have to match their effort and take it up another notch. Play Team Ball
- The Celtics play best when they keep the ball moving to find the open man. When they tend to dribble too much or play hero ball, the rest of their game seems to become stagnant. The Celtics need to take smart shots and if the outside shots aren't falling they need to get to the basket. They also need to play team defense and have each others' backs. X-FactorsHome Game
- The Celtics are back home after a successful road trip. They should get a boost from the home crowd and come out focused on protecting their home court. The Kings have struggled a bit on the road with a 13-19 record away from home. The Celtics need to take advantage of that. They call it home court advantage for a reason. Energy and Effort
-When the Celtics play with energy and effort as they did against the Warriors, they are tough to beat. When they come out with a lackluster effort and no energy as they did against the Clippers, they struggle. They need to play every game with energy, effort, grit and heart. Which Celtics team will we see in this game?