NBA First Half Awards
With the season just over halfway done, let's look at the major awards. Feel free to disagree but it's James Hardens world right now and we're just living in it.
The Boston Celtics made it rain from downtown on Thursday night, sinking a franchise-record 24 three-pointers in a 117-113 victory to hand the Milwaukee Bucks their first loss of the season.
Kyrie Irving scored a team-high 28 points for the Celtics, making six treys. Al Horford had four triples in an 18-point outing with eight assists and five rebounds, Gordon Hayward added a season-high 18 points, including four 3-pointers, and Marcus Morris posted 17 points off the bench with five treys.
The Celtics topped their previous club record of three-pointers (19) before the end of the third quarter and came one shy of tying the NBA record.
The World Series champion Boston Red Sox were honored at the TD Garden during a timeout in the first quarter.
Morris admired the way the Red Sox utilized most of their active roster to capture a title.
That was special,” Morris said. “I’m a big Red Sox guy. I’d been watching them throughout the playoffs, even throughout the season. The way they came together and won that championship is special. The biggest thing is they had a lot of different guys step up. Even when guys played well, like when Brock Holt made the cycle, he sat out. (Andrew) Benintendi had a couple amazing catches and he sat out a game and they still won. That was special to watch that. They play together.
The Celtics have the best bench in the league and will look to take a page out of the Red Sox’s book by relying on their unmatched depth to win a championship. The Celtics' deep roster was on display against the Bucks as six players scored in double-figures, including 10 points from fill-in starter Semi Ojeleye, who replaced the injured Jaylen Brown (sore foot) in the first-unit. Backup guard Terry Rozier filled up the stat sheet with seven points, seven rebounds, three assists and two steals in 27 minutes.
Bucks superstar forward Giannis Antetokounmpo returned to the lineup after missing one game recovering from a concussion and registered game-highs in points (33) and rebounds (11). But Milwaukee (7-1) played terrible defense all night, allowing Boston to take far too many uncontested three-pointers.
“We got a lot of open looks. We were taking what they were giving us,” Hayward said after playing a season-high 27 minutes.
The Celtics begin a five-game road trip on Saturday night against the Indiana Pacers, while the Bucks return home to host the Sacramento Kings on Sunday afternoon.