At halftime, the Celtics were down 52-45 in the house of one of the Western Conference favorite this season. Even without Kevin Durant, the Thunder represent a great test for the Celtics, and the Celtics passed that test tonight. They outscored the Thunder 55-33 in the 2nd half. Durant or No Durant, they held a team with Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka to a measly 33 in the latter. That’s pretty damn impressive.
The game was exactly what you’d want to see from a long term perspective. Marcus Smart was the best playof on the court with 26 points on 9-14 shooting, 8 rebounds, and awesome defense. Every rebound that he got seemed to be highly contested, and his competitive drive was out in full force tonight. Over the past few games, Isaiah Thomas has been trying to convince fans and media that he could be a starting point guard on an elite team. Whenever the Celtics needed to stop a mini run by the Thunder in the 2nd half, Isaiah either hit a 3 or made a great driving pass. Avery Bradley has finally looked like what we thought Fall 2015 Avery Bradley would resemble in the Spring of 2012. Finally, Jared Sullinger made up for a 3-12 shooting night with 15 rebounds. That’s an awesome sign for his potential going forward.
After stumbling out of the gate at 1-3, the Celtics have shown why we were predicting them for a win total in the high 40s before the season. They’ll have their off nights because they’re so young and Stevens is still figuring out the best rotations, but when this team is on, they’re really, really good. The 2nd half tonight in OKC proved it.