Toronto Raptors (3-1) at Boston Celtics (2-2)
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
7:30 PM ET
Preseason Game #5, Home Game #4
Cumberland County Civic Center
Referees: Derek Richardson, Curtis Blair, Eric Lewis
The Celtics will look to avenge their loss to the Raptors as they host them in Portland, Maine. The Celtics took a day off after Saturday's game and were able have two days of practice in preparation for this game. Jeff Green was finally able to practice on Monday and Tuesday and is expected to make his preseason debut in this game. Coach Stevens hasn't said whether he will move Green back into the starting lineup or keep Evan Turner there but my thoughts are that Turner will continue to start for this game.
The Raptors are in the midst of a preseason 3 game road trip through New York, Maine and Kansas. The Raptors beat the Knicks on Monday and, after a day off, the Celtics are their second stop. They will head to Kansas to face the Durant-less Thunder on Friday. The Celtics are playing in the first of back to back games and will head to Philly to face the Sixers after this game.
Gerald Wallace, James Young, Vitor Faverani and Rajon Rondo will miss the game with their various injuries. For the Raptors, former Celtic Greg Stiemsma is day to day as he recovers from a concussion. Lucas Noguira is also day to day with a hamstring injury.
Marcus Smart, Avery Bradley, Evan Turner, Jared Sullinger, Kelly Olynyk
Off the Bench
Marcus Thornton, Rodney McGruder, Tim Frazier
Brandon Bass, Erik Murphy, Dwight Powell, Christian Watford
Tyler Zeller, Joel Anthony
Rajon Rondo (hand) out
Vitor Faverani (knee) out
Gerald Wallace (knee) out
James Young (hamstring) out
Kyle Lowry, Demar DeRozan, Terrance Ross, Amir Johnson, Jonas Valanciunas
Off the Bench
Will Cherry, Greivis Vasquez
James Johnson, Jordan Hamilton, Landry Fields
Tyler Hansbrough, Bruno Caboclo, Patrick Patterson
Lucas Noguiera (hamstring) day to day
Greg Stiemsma (concussion) day to day
Players to Watch
Jared Sullinger has been the Celtics most consistent player so far this preseason. Hopefully he can continue with his solid play and hot shooting. More importantly, the Celtics will need his rebounding in this game.
DeMar DeRozan is a dangerous scorer. He is averaging 22 points a game so far in the preseason and is the Raptors' leading scorer.
Marcus Smart has been talking about his first matchup with the Raptors in which Lowry put up a line of 18 points, 6 assists and 5 steals. Smart has vowed to be more aggressive this time and this matchup will be a good test for him.
Keys to the Game
Pace and Space
It has been fun watching the Celtics run and space the floor by moving the ball quickly. In their last two games as fatigue took over, we saw a lot less of this. Hopefully after a rest and some practice, they should be back to running and spacing the floor.
Defense has always been and always will be a key to winning. The Celtics have been playing good defense so far this season and have been very scrappy on that end of the court. Coach Stevens is stressing defense and hopefully will continue to do so.
The Celtics were out-rebounded by 10 in their first meeting with the Raptors. They need to make a strong effort to crash the boards as a team if they want to win this game.
Derek Richardson - Richardson is entering his 18th season in the NBA. Prior to joining the NBA, Richardson spent eight years officiating in the CBA, including the 1996 CBA All-Star game and two games of the 1996 CBA Finals. The Celtics are 8-2 in their last 10 games with Richardson while the Raptors are 3-7.
Curtis Blair - Blair is entering his 8th season as an NBA referee. Blair has six seasons of NBA D-League
experience and worked the 2008 NBA D-League Finals. He also officiated in several college conferences, including the Atlantic 10, Atlantic Coast Conference and the CAA. The Celtics are 4-6 in their last 10 games with Blair while Toronto is 7-3 in their last 10.
Eric Lewis - Lewis is entering his 11th season in the NBA. Prior to joining the NBA, Lewis spent two years
working in the USBL, officiating the Finals in 2002 and 2004. Prior to that he spent three seasons in the NBA D-League, where he worked the 2003 and 2004 Playoffs and 2004 Finals. He tallied eight years in the college ranks, participating in the Atlantic Sun, Ohio Valley, Sunshine State, Florida Sun and Mid-Florida conferences. Lewis also officiated in Florida high schools for six years The Celtics are 5-5 in their last 10 games with Lewis on the court while the Raptors are 4-6 in their last 10.