In their second NBA preseason game the Celtics matched up against the 76ers for the first time since last years 2012 NBA Playoffs. The offseason brought all new players to both teams shifting Doc's gameplan and match-ups. One of the most notable differences was the absence of Andre Iguodala who was shipped off to Denver in a multi-player deal that brought former Lakers center Andrew Bynum to Philadelphia. Due to an ongoing knee injury Bynum was sidelined along with Celtic's centerpiece Kevin Garnett.
The Celtics were blown out in the game falling 75 to 107. Doc began the game with a starting lineup of Rajon Rondo, Courtney Lee, Paul Pierce, Jared Sullinger, and Darko Milicic. Of the starters Rajon Rondo played the most minutes totaling 27 minutes with just 4 points and 6 assists. The 76er's backup center Spencer Hawes had a impressive game totaling 17 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists in just 18 minutes. For the Celtics, Paul Pierce scored a team-high 16 points on 5-of-10 shooting. The Celtics struggled from the start without their defensive anchor Garnett going into halftime trailing by 14 points largely due to their continued struggle with turnovers committing 14.
The Celtics started the third quarter hot opening up with a 9-2 run but fell to the 76ers once again in the quarter getting outscored 28-21. They finished with a mere 38% shooting percentage compared to the 48.9% of Philadelphia. Jeff Green continued to be aggressive in the 22 minutes he spent on the floor however, unlike his previous performances Green scored just a mere 8 points on 3 of 9 shooting. Nearing the end of the third quarter the reserves and rookies took over. Dionte Christmas was greeted with a round of applause as a Temple Alumni yet finished with only 2 points on 1 of 4 shooting. After a blowout loss like tonight Doc Rivers and the Celtics coaching staff will have more than enough to work on with the team. In fact, the Celtics were edged in every statistical category. The Celtics and 76ers will meet again Sunday, October 21 and will look to turn it around at home in the TD Garden.
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