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Second Unit propels Boston to victory over Charlotte 107-106

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Celtics basketball is back, however so are third quarter lapses.

Charlotte Hornets v Boston Celtics Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images

Robert Williams got the starting nod in the Celtics first preseason clash of the 2019-20 season and had an immediate impact scoring the first points of the game with an impressive catch and flush off a brilliant one-handed lob pass from Gordon Hayward.

Hayward explosively looked to drive early and scored off a similar driving angle, the up and under on his right hand. The “old Gordon” looks to be back as his explosiveness was on full display. Gordo looked to drive almost every time he touched the ball and had 7 points in the first 9 minutes.

Kemba Walker in his first game in the kelly green got involved in a ton of play early, including a nice drive and dish to Gordon Hayward for a three pointer.

One underrated aspect of Kemba’s play is his court vision and passing. Kemba picked apart the Hornets quite a few times and found Enes Kanter rolling to the basket as the big man scored his first basket as a member of the Boston Celtics.

2nd Unit Watch:

Notably Semi Ojeleye was the third Celtic into the game, followed shortly after by Brad Wanamaker. Carsen Edwards (AKA Eddie House mk II) slotted in alongside Wanamaker to start the 2nd quarter and hit on his first two catch and shoot attempts as the crowd erupted.

Something tells me that Carsen Edwards is going to be a crowd favourite and fellow Rookie, Grant Williams not to be outdone, got in on the action blocking a Zeller brother for good measure.

Former Celtic, Terry Rozier played a great half, with an expanded role in Charlotte it will be interesting to see if he can help lead the Hornets toward a playoff birth in the weaker Eastern Conference.

Jayson Tatum has been shooting the ball extremely well in training camp and the team is hoping this translates into year three. Tatum’s 3 point shooting percentage dipped last season, but Tatum was in complete control on this nice corner play.

The Charlotte Hornets came out really strong in the third quarter reeling off 10 unanswered points as the starting Celtics looked in holiday mode and couldn’t find answers to a bruising display by Bismack Biyombo who had 8 points, 3 rebounds and a block in 5 minutes of play.

Defensive lapses, horrible positioning and lack of toughness translated to the last of line of defence on high alert time and again. Brad preaches to play the entire 48 minutes and by midway through the 3rd quarter, around the time Charlotte had rested it’s starters, the Celtics had 12 turnovers and were down double digits.

Marcus Smart returned to the fray to settle the bench play as the Celtics reeled off 15 unanswered points. The intensity of Smart led a team of Grant Williams, Carsen Edwards, Enes Kanter and Semi Ojeleye back to within a point at the end of the 3rd.

15th Man Watch:

Javonte Green (15 points, 4 rebounds) got into the game with 10 minutes to go and immediately had a one handed flush. Later in the quarter, Green flashed along the baseline for an explosive two handed pump jam. Green would go on a tear and be perfect 7-7 on countless incredible dunks as the crowd went berzerk with Fall and Green mania.

Tacko Fall (5 points, 3 rebounds and 2 blocks) got a standing ovation when he checked into the game alongside Tremont Waters. Fall got stripped on his first post play but managed to get a loud put back dunk a minute later. Fall was blocking and dunking on his way to an entertaining debut.