BOSTON -- One of these days, and probably soon, the Boston Celtics won't make at least 17 3-pointers in a game. Safe to say they'd rather not see it happen Tuesday night. The Celtics, who fired home 18 treys in Saturday's 117-108 win over the New Orleans Pelicans, have made 71 3-pointers during a four-game winning streak and now head to Toronto to face the team they are fighting for second place in the Eastern Conference. The 18 3-pointers Saturday made the Celtics the second team ever with at least 15 in four straight games. The Houston Rockets did it twice earlier this season. "The two or three weeks before we were doing the same things and we weren't shooting it very well, and we talked about those will come back, and we'll make a few of those," coach Brad Stevens said after Isaiah Thomas continued his torrid scoring with 38 points, 27 in the second half and 17 in the fourth quarter. "It's just kind of the way the world works; sometimes you make them, sometimes you don't." The Celtics, who won all four games at home, where they had been struggling, are 71 of 139 (51 percent) from 3-point range. Thomas, averaging 35.8 points in the four games, is 22 of 36 from beyond the arc during the streak. "Threes are more contagious than the flu -- which is pretty contagious at this point," Boston's Kelly Olynyk said. Thomas, disappointed over Washington's John Wall being named player of the month for December, continues an MVP-type season (and gets to face Wall on Wednesday in Boston). He has scored at least 20 points in 21 games and in all but one game this season (he had 18 in the other). "I'll definitely see y'all in New Orleans," Thomas told NBA TV, referring to the All-Star Game. Marcus Smart, starting for injured Avery Bradley, scored a season- and home career-high 22 points, with 15 in the first half as the Celtics (23-14) made it 10 wins in their last 12. "When he plays like that, I bet we win 100 percent of the time," Thomas said of Smart. The Celtics (23-14) twice trailed in the first half but took control with a 36-20 third quarter and cruised to the win despite 36 points and 15 rebounds by New Orleans' Anthony Davis. Just as he had done in his career-high 52-point game against Miami on Dec. 30, Thomas had no assists. The last time that happened, he had a career-high 15 in the next game. Both of the no-assist games came with Bradley out, giving him 90 points and no assists in those two games. With Bradley down with an Achilles strain, Smart had 22 points, six assists, five rebounds and two steals. He was 7 of 10 from the floor, including 5 of 7 from behind the arc. The Celtics got plenty of help from the bench as Gerald Green scored 15 points and Olynyk added 12. Al Horford, whose dead-eye shooting won Friday night's game, was 3 of 18 from the floor and 1 of 6 on treys but had eight assists and seven rebounds. Davis was 14 for 22 from the floor and added two assists and two blocked shots for the Pelicans (14-24). He has four straight 20-point/15-rebound games and this was his eighth game of 35 points and 15 boards -- the rest of the league with six of those games combined. "We just had unforced turnovers," Davis said. "We took a lot of bad shots, we weren't moving the basketball and they came down and capitalized on each bad shot and turnover that we made. "We can't afford to turn the ball over, you just got to continue to move the basketball. The ball was sticking on one side of the floor and no pass shot, one pass shot and that's not the type of team we are." Langston Galloway came off the bench to contribute 20 points in 22 minutes. Jrue Holiday had 13 points and Donatas Montiejunas, making his New Orleans debut after signing Tuesday as a free agent, had 11 off the bench in his first NBA game since April 27. NOTES: The Celtics played home games on back-to-back nights for the first time in a full season since the first two games of the 1978-79 season. They also did it twice in a 1998-1999 season shortened by a work stoppage. ... Boston G Avery Bradley was out with a strained Achilles. Coach Brad Stevens said the club will be "appropriately conservative" with regard to the injury. ... Boston C Tyler Zeller missed his third straight game with illness. G James Young will miss another week with an ankle sprain. F Jordan Mickey was available after recovering from illness. ... With snow falling outside, Stevens on whether the team checked on players' arrivals in the snow: "Nobody checked on me, I know that." ... The Celtics are 5-3 on the back end of back-to-backs, including 5-1 in the last six. ... The Pelicans visit the Knicks on Monday night.
Celtics continue 3-point barrage, beat Pelicans
The Sports Xchange | Jan 7